Present Members

Kirill V. Larin
Director of the lab, Ph.D.
2004-Present

Kirill V. Larin is Professor of Biomedical Engineering at the University of Houston. He also holds joint appointments in the Departments of Physiology and Biophysics at Baylor College of Medicine and Department of Optics and Biophysics at the Saratov State University (SSU) in Russia. Larin received his first M.S. in Laser Physics and Mathematics from the SSU (1995), his second M.S. in Cellular Physiology and Molecular Biophysics (2001) and Ph.D. in Biomedical Engineering from the University of Texas Medical Branch in Galveston (2002). His research contributions are in Biomedical Optics and Biophotonics and development and application of various optical methods for noninvasive and nondestructive imaging and diagnostics of tissues and cells. Larin is the recipient of Presidential Award from Russian President Boris Yeltsin recognizing his significant contributions in optics. He has also received Wallace Coulter Young Investigator Translation Award, Office of Naval Research Young Investigator Award, Outstanding Young Investigator Award from the Houston Society for Engineers in Medicine and Biology, and Herbert Allen Award from American Society for Mechanical Engineers. Larin currently serves as an Instructor for short courses on Tissue Optics for the Optical Society of America. He is Fellow of SPIE and OSA.

Salavat Aglyamov
Ph.D.
2017-Present

Dr. Salavat Aglyamov received the B.S. and M.S. degrees in applied mathematics in 1991 and 1993, respectively, from Moscow State University, Moscow, Russia. He received the Ph.D. degree in biophysics in 1999 from the Institute of Theoretical and Experimental Biophysics, Pushchino, Moscow region, Russia. From 2001 to 2002 he worked in the Biomedical Ultrasonics Lab at the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, as a postdoctoral fellow, where he was engaged in mathematical modeling of behavior of the soft biological tissue under externally applied loading and as  a research associate in the Department of Biomedical Engineering at the University of Texas at Austin. He joined University of Houston as Reseach Assistant Professor of Mechanocal Engineering in June 2017. He has authored more than 50 peer-reviewed publications and chapters in two books. His research interests are in the areas of tissue biomechanics, elasticity imaging, and applied mathematics.

Staff

Alexander Schill - Senior Research Scientist
Ph.D.

Alex received his Ph.D. from the Georgia Institute of Technology in 2006 and has more than 14 years combined experience working with optics & lasers.  Before coming to UH he worked for 6 years in R&D at Coherent, Inc. in Santa Clara, CA.  His research interests include biomedical and adaptive optics, state-of-the-art laser sources, and development of new OCT applications.

Postdocs

Maryam Hatami
Ph.D. in Physics
2020 - Present

Maryam is currently working in the field of imaging and biomechanical characterization of tissues and cells using Optoacoustics, Optical Coherence Tomography/Elastography, Brillouin spectroscopy, light-sheet microscopy. She received her PhD in Physics from the University of Sciences and Researches in Iran in 2012. Maryam has over 15 years combined experience working in industry and academia with experience in nonlinear optics, optical and photoacoustic characterization and basic science research on nanofabrication and characterization. Before coming to UH she was a postdoc at UMass Boston for 5 years. Her research interests include linear and nonlinear optics, light-matter interactions, nanotechnology, optical spectroscopy, biomedical imaging and sensing, image processing and data analysis.

Dr. Andrew Lopez
Ph.D. in Molecular Physiology
Fall 2021-Present

Dr. Andrew Lopez received his Ph.D. in Molecular Physiology and Biophysics from Baylor College of Medicine in the lab of Dr. Irina Larina. Currently, he is a Postdoctoral Research Fellow in the Department of Biomedical Engineering at the University of Houston in the lab of Dr. Kirill Larin. His research interests include the development biophotonic approaches to investigate topics in developmental biology using the mouse model. Dr. Lopez is currently working on developing multi-modality approaches such as Optical Coherence Tomography integrated with Light sheet microscopy to investigate neural tube closure defects using mouse and organoid models.

Taye Mekonnen
Ph.D in Biomedical Engineering
2021-Present

Taye Mekonnen is a postdoctoral fellow at Biomedical Engineering, University of Houston. He received his PhD from Macquarie University, Australia, in 2020. His research interest lies in the biomedical imaging and focuses on developing and applying Optical Coherence Tomography (OCT) methods to structural and functional imaging as well as image processing and analysis.

Manmohan Singh
Ph.D. in Biomedical Engineering
2014-Present

Dr. Manmohan Singh received his Ph. D. in Biomedical Engineering from the University of Houston in 2018. He is currently a Postdoctoral Fellow in the Department of Biomedical Engineering, also at the University of Houston. Since the fall of 2010, Manmohan has been with Dr. Kirill Larin’s Biomedical Optics Laboratory. His research interests include utilizing biomedical imaging for the detection and monitoring of diseases and utilizing and developing new elastographic methods for investigating the biomechanical properties of tissues. Dr. Singh is currently working on developing a high resolution compression elastography system and accompanying computational techniques for early identification of colon cancer.

Graduate Students and Research Assistants

Yogeshwari Ambekar
Ph.D. Candidate
2018-Present

Yogeshwari Ambekar is a Ph.D. student in the Department of Biomedical Engineering at the University of Houston. She received her Master's degree in Biomedical Engineering from Indian Institute of Technology Hyderabad, India. Her research interests include Optical Coherence Tomography and Elastography of biological tissues, Multimodal imaging, addressing the problems associated with embryonic development using the Brillouin-OCT Multimodal system.

Harshdeep Singh Chawla
Ph.D. Candidate
2018-Present

Harshdeep Singh Chawla is a Ph.D. student in Biomedical Engineering at the University of Houston. He completed his Master's in Computer Engineering from Rochester Institute of Technology, NY and Bachelor's in Electronics and Communication Engineering from Rajiv Gandhi Technical University, India. Presently he is working on Parallel computing algorithm for Bio-medical imaging, that uses CUDA. His areas of interest include GPU Computing, Biomedical Imaging and Embedded Systems.

Jessica Gutierrez
Graduate Student
2021-Present

Jessica received her bachelors in Biology from the University of Texas at El Paso in 2019. The focus of her research is utilizing Optical Coherence Tomography to assess the effects of ethanol and cannabinoids on embryo brain development.

MD. Mobarak Karim
Graduate Student
2021-Present

MS in Biomedical Science and Engineering from Gwangju Institute of Science and Technology(GIST), South Korea under Korean Government Scholarship.  B.Sc. in Electrical and Electronic Engineering from International Islamic University Chittagong(IIUC), Bangladesh. Research Interest: Multiphoton Optical Coherence Tomography and Elastography of biological tissues, Multimodal imaging.

Achuth Nair
Ph.D. Candidate
2016 - Present

Achuth Nair is a PhD Candidate in the Department of Biomedical Engineering at the University of Houston, where he also completed his undergraduate studies. The focus of his research is on Optical Coherence Elastography of biological tissues with specific focus on ocular tissue biomechanics.

Justin Rippy
Ph.D. Candidate
2016 - Present
Sajedeh Saeidifard
Graduate Student
2021-present

Sajedeh received her Master of Science in Biophotonics in 2019 from the University of Shahid Beheshti University in Iran and her Bachelor of Engineering in Optics and Laser from the University Of Shahid Bahonar University in Iran in 2016.  She worked on the detection of optical responses of HepG2 & Mesenchymal stem cells using phase-sensitive measurements and under infrared stimulation as her M.Sc. thesis. The focus of his research is on the development of novel technology and methods for the noninvasive assessment of biomechanical properties of the cornea. Her research interests include Optical coherence tomography, Bioimaging and optical spectroscopy, and Photoacoustic sensing.

Christian Zevallos Delgado
Graduate Student
2021-Present

Christian received his Master of Science in Bioinformatics and Molecular Biochemistry from the George Washington University in 2020 and Bachelor of Engineering in Biotechnology from the Universidad Catolica de Santa Maria, Arequipa-Peru in 2016. His research interest involves the use of computational methods for protein modeling, gene expression analysis, and biomedical imaging.

Hongqiu Zhang
Ph.D. Candidate
2017-Present

Hongqiu received his M. S. from Tsinghua University in 2016 and his B. S. from University of Science and Technology of China in 2011. His interests include biomedical optics and its application, amplification of OCT signals with magnetic nanoparticles.