The inner workings of the human brain have always been a subject of great interest. Unfortunately, it is fairly difficult to view brain structures or intricate tissues due to the fact that the skull is not transparent by design. The reality is that light scattering is the major obstacle for deep penetration into tissue.
Dr. Vladislav Yakovlev, professor in the Department of Biomedical Engineering at Texas A&M University, has been developing a more efficient way of propagating light through an opaque medium. Propagation of light refers to the way that light travels from one point to another, in this case, through a medium, such as human tissue.
The new method involves making a minimally invasive hole within the medium, which is smaller in diameter than needles that are currently being used within the medical field. The process shows a great deal of promise in many uses, including viewing brain structure through the skull and imaging blood through skin tissue.
The technology could even be extended outside the realm of biomedical engineering to develop a more efficient way of seeing through fog while driving. This can be accomplished by deploying a laser pulse that could be sent through fog and evaporate water. This would allow drivers to have a safer experience during hazardous driving conditions and would work exactly as the method used in biomedical engineering applications… Continue reading.
A newly developed method for detecting glucose based on how it absorbs a specific type of light could spell the end of the painful, invasive finger-prick tests diabetics rely on to monitor their condition, says a Texas A&M University biomedical engineer who is developing the technology.
Using optical technology that essentially sends a twisting, directional type of light at a glucose-containing sample, a team of researchers led by Vladislav Yakovlev, professor in Texas A&M’s Department of Biomedical Engineering, has been able to accurately detect glucose concentrations by measuring how glucose absorbs this light at a molecular level. His findings may translate into a more effective means of diabetes management for the millions suffering from the disease.
The research, which was spearheaded by undergraduate student Carlos Tovar, under the guidance of Yakovlev and graduate students Brett Hokr and Zhaokai Meng, was presented at this year’s SPIE Photonics West conference. Authorities on biophotonics, nanophotonics and biomedical optics from throughout the world convene annually at the high-tech conference to discuss their cutting-edge work. Each year, the conference attracts more than 20,000 people who want to see, learn about and purchase the latest devices, components and systems that are driving trends such as state-of-the art medical technologies, smart manufacturing and autonomous vehicles.
Vladislav Yakovlev, professor in the Department of Biomedical Engineering at Texas A&M University, has been elected Fellow of the American Physical Society (APS).
Yakovlev, who was elected upon the recommendation of the APS Division of Atomic, Molecular and Optical Physics, is being recognized for outstanding contributions to the development of ultrafast lasers, optical instrumentation, and the resulting spectroscopic advances that have important applications in physics, chemistry, biology, engineering and medicine. Election to fellowship in APS is limited to no more than one half of 1 percent of society membership.
Yakovlev, who joined Texas A&M in 2012, has made many significant contributions to the field of optical instrumentation for biomedical sensing and imaging, including advancing the technology of ultrafast solid-state lasers, making it an indispensible tool for multiphoton microscopy, imaging and sensing.
A new lightweight, energy-efficient tool for analyzing a material’s chemical makeup could improve the detection abilities of various technologies, ranging from bomb-detecting drones to space rovers searching for signs of life, says a Texas A&M University biomedical engineer who is part of the team developing the instrument.
The tool makes use of optical communications fiber to collect and transmit light as it interacts with the material being studied, explains Vladislav Yakovlev, professor in the Department of Biomedical Engineering at Texas A&M. Compared with conventional technology, the newly designed measurement system is 95 percent lighter, requires 65 percent less energy and is only about a third of the cost, he says. The system is detailed in the latest issue of the scientific journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.
Perhaps just as important, because of the way in which the system is constructed, it’s significantly sturdier than current technology, Yakovlev notes. This increased robustness, coupled with a massive reduction in the system’s overall weight and decreased energy requirements, makes the technology a prime candidate for integration into lightweight unmanned aircraft vehicles used for remotely sensing explosives, he says. But Yakovlev’s technology is not limited to terrestrial applications; those same attributes make the system an ideal tool for use on space-based vehicles where mechanical shocks and excessive vibrations associated with the launchings and landings have often damaged analysis technologies, Yakovlev notes.
A team of researchers led by Vladislav Yakovlev, professor in the Department of Biomedical Engineering, and Arum Han, associate professor in the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering at Texas A&M University, has been awarded a Major Research Instrumentation grant from the National Science Foundation for its efforts in developing a new tool for studying large populations of cells with single-cell resolution without destroying them.
The instrument, Yakovlev says, is expected to overcome many of the challenges associated with conventional cell analysis, such as the use of molecular labels or analytical approaches that destroy cell viability, while providing a more effective alternative to the labor-intensive and slow approaches used for characterizing cell’s biophysical and chemical properties.
Ultrasound technology could soon experience a significant upgrade that would enable it to produce high-quality, high-resolution images thanks to the development of a new key material by a team of researchers that includes a professor in Texas A&M University’s Department of Biomedical Engineering.
The material, which converts ultrasound waves into optical signals that can be used to produce an image, is the result of a collaborative effort by Texas A&M Professor Vladislav Yakovlev and researchers from King’s College London, The Queen’s University of Belfast and the University of Massachusetts Lowell. Their findings appear in the current issue of Advanced Materials.
The engineered material, known as a “metamaterial,” offers significant advantages over conventional ultrasound technology, which generates images by converting ultrasound waves into electrical signals, Yakovlev explains. Although that technology has advanced throughout the years — think of the improvement in sonogram images — it is still largely constrained by bandwidth and sensitivity limitations, he says. These limitations, he adds, have been the chief obstacle when it comes to producing high-quality images that can serve as powerful diagnostic tools.
Vladislav V. Yakovlev, who joined the faculty as professor in the Department of Biomedical Engineering in January, has been elevated to the rank of Fellow Member of the Optical Society (OSA).
He is one of just 66 individuals among OSA’s regular members to be so distinguished in 2012. Election to Fellow is based on outstanding contributions to optics through accomplishments in science and engineering, through technical leadership, and through impact on the optics community. Yakovlev is being recognized for the development of new nonlinear-optical techniques for diagnostics and imaging, and their applications to medicine and biology.
“Vladislav has served the optics community with distinction, and I am very pleased to recognize him with this honor,” said OSA President Tony Heinz. “He is part of a truly global group of individuals, this year’s fellows representing more than a dozen countries on four continents.”