Principal Investigator

MugshotDr Chris Rowlands started his academic career in 2001 at Imperial College, but on the other side of campus, in the Chemistry department. After discovering that he couldn't sketch a hexagon well enough to be any good at synthetic chemistry, he decided to concentrate on physical chemistry, if only because it required remembering the names of fewer chemists. This proved a good career move, and he went on to study for a PhD in the physics and chemistry of chalcogenide glasses at Cambridge University, in the group of Prof. Stephen Elliott. It was there that he learned about glass synthesis, Raman microscopy, analytical chemistry techniques of all kinds, algorithm design, and several new swearwords for use when attempting to get the laser working again.

After leaving Cambridge in 2010, he spent a year at the University of Nottingham, studying the use of Raman microscopy in diagnosing cancer in the group of Dr Ioan Notingher, before receiving a three-year Wellcome Trust MIT Postdoctoral Research Fellowship to the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, in the group of Prof. Peter So. There he discovered the delights (and curses) of multiphoton microscopy, fluorescence lifetime microscopy, super-resolution imaging, light-sheet microscopy and many more fluorescence microscopy techniques. Five years, several papers, two snowpocalypses and multiple swearwords later, his visa ran out, so he came back to the UK to continue his fellowship back in Cambridge, as a guest in the laboratory of Prof. Clemens Kaminski. While nominally developing new super-resolution techniques, a suspiciously high fraction of his time was actually spent drinking tea and trying to sneak naughty acronyms into serious scientific journals.

The tea and naughty acroyms were clearly a good career move, because in 2017 he was invited to join the Bioengineering Faculty at Imperial College as a lecturer. His current research is focussed on the development of optical instrumentation, particularly for use in biological applications. Nevertheless, the main focus of the lab is on interesting research, so if there's a good idea and the resources are available to do it, the group will have a go. Science is supposed to be fun after all.

Postdoctoral Researchers

  • Dr Muhsincan Sesen

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    Personal details

    Dr Muhsincan Sesen Postdoctoral Research Associate

    Research

    Muhsincan develops end-user microfluidic devices for improving human health and well-being by utilising state of the art fabrication and automation techniques. He is currently developing a microfluidic platform capable of reconfiguring itself to synthesize a wide range of different drugs on demand.

  • Debora Machado Andrade Schubert

    Debora

    Personal details

    Debora Machado Andrade Schubert Postdoctoral Research Associate

    Research

    Debora works on two projects: building a system to map fluorescence in a bioreactor, and building a system to create optical filters extremely rapidly.

  • Glenn Howe

    Glenn

    Personal details

    Glenn Howe Postdoctoral Research Associate

    Research

    Glenn develops optical instrumentation for numerous areas of research. He is currently developing a novel optical ultrasound instrument that offers an increase in resolution and flexibility over conventional methods.

  • Ke Guo

    Ke Guo

    Personal details

    Ke Guo Postdoctoral Research Associate

    Research

    Ke Guo works on the development of an oblique plane microscope (OPM) with primed conversion labelling and Raman spectroscopy functionalities integrated. Such an instrument can potentially be useful for studying cell lineage and embryo development.

PhD Candidates

  • Abderrahim Boualam

    Abdi

    Personal details

    Abderrahim Boualam

    Research

    Abderrahim researches super-resolution microscopy, specifically Structured Illumination Microscopy (SIM). He is developing new methods for increasing speed and throughput in SIM.

  • Isabell Whiteley

    Isabell

    Personal details

    Isabell Whiteley

    Research

    Isabell researches neurophotonic holography, specifically methods to project 3D light patterns into the brain. This can be used to image membrane potentials and control neurons at high speed.

  • Neil Wright

    Neil

    Personal details

    Neil Wright

    Research

    Neil is researching the physical basis of memory, using a variety of methods including optical imaging and molecular biology.

Masters Students

  • Elias Rabbat

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    Personal details

    Elias Rabbat

    Research

    Elias is developing and optimising a Raman-Activated Cell Sorter (RACS) for early cancer screening.

  • Setthibhak Suthithanakom

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    Personal details

    Setthibhak Suthithanakom

    Research

    Setthibhak is developing a Configurable Microfluidic Device with the aim of making chemical synthesis cheaper and easier.

Undergraduates

  • Megan Allerton

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    Personal details

    Megan Allerton

    Research

    Megan is using an interferometer setup to develop rewritable optical filters.

  • Yacout Rtel Bennani

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    Personal details

    Yacout Rtel Bennani

    Research

    Yacout is exploring the possibilities of using Lego pieces to build low-cost optical systems, and is currently focusing on building a variable beam expander with lego pieces.

  • Callan Egan

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    Personal details

    Callan Egan

    Research

    Callan is working on building a low-cost rescan confocal microscope with the ultimate aim being greater access to confocal microscopy for labs that can’t afford the equipment.

  • Marta Masramon Muñoz

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    Personal details

    Marta Masramon Muñoz

    Research

    Marta is analysing hyperspectral oncological images. This involves using neural networks to characterise differences in the Raman spectra between healthy and cancerous cells, and studying the impact of pre-processing methods with respect to reducing noise in the data.

  • Craig Young

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    Personal details

    Craig Young

    Affiliations

    Craig is developing a method of speeding up Raman microscopy for potential interoperative diagnostic use.

Alumni

 
NameRoleDetails
Benjamin Warmington Undergraduate student  
Alfonso Parra Garcia Undergraduate student  
Roxanne Sabbag Undergraduate student  
Ioana Filipas Undergraduate student  
Marta Llorden de Paz Masters Student  
Pavlos Dimitriou Masters Student  
Clara Tavernier Masters Student  
Costanza Di Veroli Undergraduate student  
Ze Lum Undergraduate student  
David Chen Undergraduate student  
Yann Zhong Undergraduate student  
Ife Chinweze Undergraduate student  
Luka Lagator Undergraduate student  
Peerapong Rithisith Undergraduate student  
Gabrielle Convert UROP student  
Weng Foo Undergraduate student  
Christos Argyros Masters Student  
Summary of the table's contents