IEEE Photonics Society

Boston Photonics Society Chapter

Boston Chapter of the IEEE Photonics Society

Biomedical Optics Workshop  

Tuesday, March 16, 23, 30, April 6, 13, 2010, 7:00–9:30 PM
Located at Boston University Photonics Center, 8 Saint Mary's Street, Boston, MA, USA

March 30, 2010
8:15 PM

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Photodynamic Therapy: A Bridge Between Medicine and Technology

Prof. Tayyaba Hasan, Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA


Prof. Tayyaba Hasan, Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA

Abstract:  Photodynamic therapy (PDT) is a treatment modality for the destruction of cancerous and non-neoplastic pathologies that involves the simultaneous presence of light, oxygen, and a light-activatable chemical called a photosensitizer (PS) to achieve a cytotoxic effect. Most PDT agents currently in use have finite fluorescence quantum yields. This property is being used for image guided detection and resection of diseases. In addition, the complexity of photochemical and photobiological mechanisms associated with PDT requires robust and accurate dosimetry and treatment monitoring. Fluorescence properties of photosensitizer can also be exploited for functional imaging and quantitative spectroscopy to provide on-line dosimetry guidelines. In addition, the photophysics and mechanisms of cell killing by PDT have been extensively studied in recent years, and PDT has received regulatory approval for the treatment of a number of diseases worldwide. As the application of this treatment modality expands with regards to both anatomical sites and disease stages, it is important to develop strategies for enhancing PDT outcomes. This can be enhanced by: (i) PS packaging, (ii) understanding photochemical and photobiological mechanisms and (iii) therapy monitoring. In this presentation, an overview of the impact of optical activation in therapeutics and diagnostics will be discussed.


Biography:  Tayyaba Hasan, Ph.D. is a Professor of Dermatology at Harvard Medical School (HMS), Wellman Center for Photomedicine, Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH), Professor of Health Science Technology at Harvard-MIT, and the Director of the Office for Research Career Development at MGH. Her research is in photobiology and photodynamic therapy with over 200 publications and inventions. She is the Program Director for a National Cancer Institute multi-site Program Project, and holds several other grants. Dr. Hasan is an inventor of the FDA approved photodynamic treatment of Age-Related Macular Degeneration. She is the recipient of William Silen Lifetime Achievement in Mentoring Award (HMS) and Bench to Bedside Pioneer Award from the National Institutes of Health.


For more information on the technical content of the workshop, contact either:
1) Farhad Hakimi (, Biomedical Opitcs Workshop Committee Chair
2) Selim Ünlü (, Biomedical Opitcs Workshop Committee Co-Chair
3) Reuel Swint (, Boston LEOS Chair