2022 Stella Zhang New Venture Competition Winners

The Merage School’s Beall Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship is pleased to present the winners of this year’s Stella Zhang New Venture Competition, outscoring almost 100 concepts that were initially submitted back in February.

The top ten teams conducted a LIVE “Shark Tank” style pitch to our panel of four esteemed Orange County investors and entrepreneur ecosystem influencers in the NVC Grand Finale. Our judge panelists included Isabelle Bart, Rodrigo Mahs, Lori Mazan, Debbie Lin – who contributed excellent insights and thoughtful questions to our teams.

After a passionate deliberation, the judges selected the top finalist to receive the $20,000 grand prize: Noveil.

The hard work of these teams, openness to coaching and feedback, and innovative ideas truly speak to the amazing depth and breadth of talent found among the University of California, Irvine students.

Please join us in congratulating the following teams:

GRAND PRIZE WINNER – $20,000: Noveil

AUDIENCE FAVORITE – $5,000: Enjovu Paper

BUSINESS PRODUCTS AND SERVICES:

1st place: $10,000
Nutripair: Everyday technology that pairs people with the best foods for their dietary preferences while helping restaurants’ raise revenues by 10% with the use of menu management and allergen/nutrition analyses.

2nd place: $5,000
EmpowerMi: EmpowerMi is a technology-driven mental wellness platform that empowers users with a holistic approach to mental wellbeing.

CONSUMER PRODUCTS:

1st place: $10,000
HAI: HAI offers sustainable and fashionable jewelry for consumers who are looking for attractive and high-quality products that match their passion for eco-friendly lifestyle.

2nd place: $5,000
GaleGauge: GaleGauge is a golf training tool that uses live wind, temperature, and distance data to calculate how you need to adjust your swing to the elements to sink the perfect shot.

CONSUMER SERVICES:

1st place: $10,000
Noveil: Noveil is the first dating platform for Gen Z college students with no profiles and no swipes, and we increase the number of matches and in-person dates a user receives.

2nd place: $5,000
SnapHealth: Our mission is to improve the healthcare experience for patients by empowering them to take back control over their health record data with a simple mobile application that “just works.”

LIFE SCIENCES:

1st place: $10,000        
forMED Technologies: forMED offers patients and doctors an at-home, non-contact IOP monitoring system that measures eye pressure daily to ensure medication effectiveness and prevent blindness.

2nd place: $5,000
Sayenza Biosciences: Sayenza Biosciences is a medical device company developing the industry’s first fully-automated platform for the processing of liposuction fat, the largest source of adult stem cells in the body, for limitless point-of-care aesthetic and regenerative medicine applications.

SOCIAL ENTERPRISE:

1st place: $10,000    
Blue Aqua Food Tech: Blue Aqua Food Tech, is developing an alternative protein for fish feed to help solve the global issue of fishmeal shortages and food waste mismanagement with the use of insects.

2nd place: $5,000
Enjovu Paper: Enjovu Paper is a sustainable paper-making brand creating products with regenerated fibers from elephant feces and aiming to lessen the environmental impact of paper production and raise awareness for the endangered wild elephants worldwide.

Click here to visit the UCI Paul Merage School of Business website.

Choi receives DoD HBCU/MI award to establish UCI Core Optical Laboratory Resource

Advanced instrumentation and new dedicated space to train the next generation of scientists and engineers

Dr. Bernard Choi, Associate Director of UCI Beckman Laser Institute, received a 2022 Department of Defense (DoD) Research and Education Program for Historically Black Colleges and Universities and Minority-Serving Institutions (HBCU/MI) award.  The award supports the establishment of the UCI Core Optical Laboratory Resource (COLR), which will feature a dedicated space and advanced instrumentation, enhancing the Institute’s capabilities to attract and train the next generation of scientists and engineers. Through UCI COLR, students will expand their skills by developing basic and applied optical systems and observing, measuring and interpreting fundamental optical phenomena.

Optical technologies enable minimally- and non-invasive functional imaging, multiscale diagnostics, image-guided therapy and laser surgery. Since its founding in 1986, UCI Beckman Laser Institute and Medical Clinic has served as a premier interdisciplinary research institute for optics and photonics in biology and medicine. Research teams at the Institute develop and apply new optical technologies and methodologies to address biological and biomedical problems.

“Hands-on training in optics and photonics is a significant bottleneck in the education of students and researchers, stated Choi. “The UCI COLR will enable us to provide a robust and broad education in fundamental optical principles.”

New instrumentation in UCI COLR will augment Institute capabilities, as researchers pioneer advanced optical technologies for trauma and critical care.  New lab-based coursework in multiple departments will provide trainees with opportunities to develop optical system design and data acquisition skills. In addition, general optics and photonics courses and specialty courses in imaging approaches will rely heavily on UCI COLR technologies and equipment. Topics of interest include laser fundamentals, imaging system design and understanding health disparities associated with optical measurements.

Institute teams will develop formal and informal summer workshops and boot camps.  UCI COLR will impact approximately 30 students annually through the Institute’s Access to Careers in Engineering and Sciences (ACES) program and other UCI multi-year partnerships with HBCU and local minority service community college programs.  During these visits, UCI COLR will strengthen the hands-on training and engagement of the summer students in optics and photonics.

“I look forward to working with the 15 outstanding UCI faculty who comprise the COLR management team, to enhance the training of our undergraduate and graduate students,” stated Choi.  “The experiential learning opportunities that will result from the UCI COLR will give our trainees a stronger foundation in optics and photonics, and we believe that these experiences will increase the enthusiasm of our students and stimulate their interest in pursuing careers in biophotonics and STEM [science, technology, engineering and math] in general.”

Engineering Students Celebrate Major Wins in 2022 New Venture Competition

By Rachel Karas, UCI Samueli School of Engineering

UCI’s Merage School of Business Beall Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship hosted its “Shark Tank”-style grand finale of the Stella Zhang New Venture Competition on June 3. A total of $100,000 was distributed to winning teams across five different categories; engineering students were members of five different winning teams. The panel of four esteemed Orange County investors and entrepreneur ecosystem influencers contributed insights and thoughtful questions to the teams.

Here are the winning teams that included Anteater Engineers among their members:

Noveil earned the grand prize of $20,000, along with first place in the Consumer Services category. Noveil is the first dating platform for Gen Z college students with no profiles and no swipes, and it increases the number of matches and in-person dates a user receives.

forMED Technologies took home first place ($10,000) in the Life Sciences category. forMED offers patients and doctors an at-home, noncontact intraocular pressure monitoring system that measures eye pressure daily to ensure medication effectiveness and prevent blindness.

Sayenza Biosciences won second place in the Life Sciences category ($5,000). Sayenza Biosciences is a medical device company developing the industry’s first fully automated platform for processing liposuction fat, the largest source of adult stem cells in the body, for point-of-care aesthetic and regenerative medicine applications.

GaleGauge was awarded second place in the Consumer Products category ($5,000). GaleGauge is a golf training tool that uses live wind, temperature and distance data to calculate how players need to adjust their swings to the elements for sinking the perfect shot.

SnapHealth placed second in the Consumer Services category ($5,000). SnapHealth’s mission is to improve the healthcare experience for patients by empowering them to take control over their health record data with a simple mobile application.

The Stella Zhang New Venture Competition is open to all UCI students, staff members and researchers as well as community members interested in the opportunity to form a team, launch a startup and potentially fund a business idea.

Click here to read the full article on the UCI Samueli School of Engineering website.

F.D.A. Approves Alopecia Drug That Restores Hair Growth in Many Patients

The drug, made by Eli Lilly, is already used for rheumatoid arthritis, and could be followed by two more drugs from other companies.

By Gina Kolata, New York Times

The disease can vary in severity, but for some, it can be life-altering — a total loss of body hair, including eyelashes and eyebrows, even nose hair and hair in the ears. And, until recently, for those with alopecia areata, there was no treatment to make the hair grow back.

But on Monday, the Food and Drug Administration approved baricitinib, a drug made by Eli Lilly that regrows hair by blocking the immune system from attacking hair follicles. Two other companies, Pfizer and Concert Pharmaceuticals, are close behind with similar drugs, known as JAK inhibitors. The drugs are already on the market for the treatment of rheumatoid arthritis and other autoimmune diseases. F.D.A. approval is important for insurance coverage of these expensive drugs, which have a list price of nearly $2,500 a month.

The Lilly drug was studied in two trials, sponsored by the company and published last month in the New England Journal of Medicine, involving 1,200 patients with severe alopecia areata. Nearly 40 percent who took the drug had complete or near-complete hair regrowth after 36 weeks. After a year, nearly half of the patients had their hair back.

Dr. Brett King, a dermatology professor at Yale University, was the principal investigator for the two Lilly trials and is also leading trials sponsored by the other companies. He said he was optimistic that the success rate for the drugs would get better. Manufacturers may be able to improve the JAK inhibitors for alopecia areata. And when all three companies have drugs on the market, patients who do not respond to one company’s drug might respond to one of the others.

Patients in the Lilly study experienced relatively mild side effects, including a small increased risk of acne, urinary tract infections and other infections. Those side effects were easily treatable or improved without treatment.

The Lilly trial results “are impressive,” wrote Dr. Andrew Messenger of the University of Sheffield and Matthew Harries of the University of Manchester in an accompanying editorial. They added that the findings “represent the first published phase 3 trials of any treatment for this condition.”

More than 300,000 Americans live with severe alopecia areata, according to the F.D.A. The impact of the disease is hard to overstate, Dr. King said.

For most people with alopecia areata, the disease manifests as one or a few small bald patches on the head. But those with severe cases have something much worse. They may notice small bald spots on their heads one day. Three months or even three weeks later, they have no hair on their bodies.

Dr. King is widely credited by colleagues for piquing interest in the use of JAK inhibitors to treat alopecia areata. He said it all began when he noticed three abstracts presented at medical meetings in 2012 and 2013. The studies, led by Dr. Raphael Clynes and Dr. Angela Christiano of Columbia University, involved mice but indicated that JAK inhibitors might reverse alopecia areata.

Shortly afterward, a 25-year-old man named Kyle came to see Dr. King for the treatment of psoriasis. He had almost no hair and his head and body had big, red scaly psoriasis plaques.

“I looked at him and said, ‘You have alopecia areata,’” Dr. King said.

Kyle began noticing he had severe hair loss when he was at a dance in high school, wearing a hat. He went to the bathroom, took off his hat and, to his horror, found a large amount of hair in the hat.

“It’s a Twilight Zone episode,” Dr. King said.

He looked at Kyle and said, “If you want to try something wild that has not been done before, there is a medicine approved for rheumatoid arthritis and being developed for psoriasis. There is some suggestion in mice that it might work.”

Kyle agreed to take tofacitinib, a JAK inhibitor made by Pfizer that is similar to the Lilly drug. Eight months later, he had his hair back.

After Dr. King published a report on Kyle, other dermatologists began trying JAK inhibitors.

Dr. Maryanne Makredes Senna, the director of the Hair Loss Center of Excellence at Beth Israel Lahey Health in Massachusetts, was among them.

She would prevail upon insurers to cover the drugs, and sometimes she would succeed.

“It’s a beautiful thing to see the amazing impact,” said Dr. Senna, who has received consulting fees from Eli Lilly and Pfizer. “They come in with no hair, totally withdrawing from life. Their eyes are cast down. They come back and say, ‘I have my life back. I have my self back.’”

Dr. Natasha Atanaskova Mesinkovska, the chief scientific officer at the National Alopecia Areata Foundation and a dermatology professor at the University of California, Irvine, helped the pharmaceutical companies find patients for their trials. She, too, has been impressed by the results in those who have responded to the drugs.

Severe hair loss not only “robs a person of their identity” but is “a medical issue,” she said, adding that when people lose hair in their nose and ears, it affects allergies and hearing.

Christian Daniels, 27, a data center technician who lives in Peoria, Ill., said hair loss also affected his eyes. Without eyelashes, dust would get into his eyes and irritate them so much he began putting Vaseline on his eyelids.

Mr. Daniels’s hair started falling out when he was 25. Within a month, all of his body hair was gone.

Covid-19 was “a blessing in disguise,” he said, because he could work at home.

“I felt like my life had been put on hold,” he said. “I felt like the only thing that mattered was how to get my hair back.”

He found the Lilly trials by “Googling and Googling.”

Now, he said, “it’s almost like it never happened,” although he still has flashbacks sometimes when he looks in a mirror and remembers his hairless self.

Dr. Brittany Craiglow, a dermatologist in private practice in Fairfield, Conn., who is married to Dr. King, said severe alopecia areata was especially difficult for children.

One patient, Cassidy Mackwell of Canton, Mass., lost her hair when she was 8. When adults saw her, they assumed she had cancer.

“People would come up to Cassidy when we were in a restaurant having dinner,” said her mother, Melissa Mackwell. Some would even try to pay for their meals. “They would hug her and say, ‘I’m so sorry. Keep fighting.’”

One of Dr. Craiglow’s patients, Brooke Nelson, who lives in Belleville, N.J., lost all of her long blond hair when she was in first grade. Brooke was so embarrassed by her hair loss that her mother, Danielle Nelson, home-schooled her.

She took Brooke to medical center after medical center, to doctor after doctor, but to no avail. “I would have given up my house, given up everything if that meant giving Brooke back her hair,” Ms. Nelson said.

Ms. Nelson was ready to take Brooke to China for stem cell therapy when she found Dr. Craiglow, who gave Brooke a JAK inhibitor. Her hair grew back.

“It was a miracle,” Ms. Nelson said.

Click here to read the full New York Times article.

Melanoma researcher covers all the bases

UCI Health dermatologist Anand Ganesan created new compounds that slow skin cancer growth

By Matt Coker

Dr. Anand Ganesan probably won’t be hanging from a ceiling `a la Tom Cruise in Mission Impossible, but the UCI Health dermatologist and School of Medicine professor of dermatology and biological sciences does compare part of what he does to a plot device in the 1996 action thriller.

“You know where the guy opens the switch box, there are all these wires coming down, and he’s trying to figure out which wire to cut to stop something bad from happening? That’s kind of what we’re trying to do: Cut the right wire to short- circuit cancer,” says the co-director of the Biotechnology, Imaging & Drug Discovery program at the Chao Family Comprehensive Cancer Center.

Ganesan says being a cancer researcher pays dividends when it comes to his own practice as a dermatologist. Unlike other health systems in Orange County, UCI Health has a roster of physicians who double as world-class researchers in their specialties.

“Most doctors don’t know how a drug is developed and what goes into the thought process of doing that,” Ganesan says. “Knowing that really helps guide my practice a lot more.”

Not to mix Tom Cruise movies, but the researcher/dermatologist is a top gun when it comes to embodying the CFCCC mission to facilitate and promote interdisciplinary and transdisciplinary cancer research across UCI; disseminate state-of-the-art cancer knowledge to caregivers, patients and families, and the public; train the next diverse generation of cancer researchers and care providers; and deliver the highest quality multidisciplinary clinical care to cancer patients.

This would not be possible, Ganesan says, without grants from the National Institutes for Health and UCI’s Anti-Cancer Challenge that have helped pave the way for his decade-plus research into identifying genes that are activated in cancer and developing ways to prevent them from sending the signals that spur the disease.

The Anti-Cancer Challenge, a ride-run-walk event that raises awareness and funds for pilot studies and clinical trials that support research at the CFCCC, provided Ganesan’s team with about $40,000 in seed money. That led to the development of a new drug to treat melanoma ­– which may have broad applications for other tumor types – that received substantially more funding from the NIH.

A $10 million, five-year National Cancer Institute grant recognizes the university’s deep expertise in biology, mathematics, chemistry and other research areas and led to the creation of the UCI Center for Cancer Systems Biology. The university is among just 13 research institutions nationwide that are part of the NCI’s Cancer Systems Biology Consortium.

“Our mission is to translate the findings of our research into treatments that can benefit patients, driven by a strong commitment to scientific discovery and clinical innovation,” Dr. Richard A. Van Etten, the CFCCC’s director, has said. “Institutions lacking their own research base can follow and adopt advances developed at NCI centers like ours, but they cannot lead in the same way as comprehensive cancer centers that integrate research with clinical care.”

For an idea of how this has played out for Ganesan and his team, their latest paper in Cell Reports, “New molecule holds promise of therapies for cancer and rare diseases,” builds on their 2017 Cell Reports paper, “Key mutation in melanoma suppresses the immune system,” which builds on their 2012 Cancer Research paper, “Researchers find cause of chemotherapy resistance in melanoma.”

Melanoma gets top billing because it is what Ganesan and his fellow dermatologists in sunny Southern California deal with most frequently.

“Fortunately, 90 percent of melanoma is curable by surgery,” he says. “Almost two-thirds of the other 10 percent we see is what we call Stage III disease, which means the tumor has moved to the lymph node but hasn’t moved to the rest of the body. The remainder of it is where the tumor has moved to the rest of the body.”

Ganesan and his fellow researchers are trying to develop new therapies for most patients with Stage III tumors. “The strategy scientists have taken initially was to say, ‘OK, these tumors have the same mutations as the metastatic tumors, so the immune system is potentially activated in the same way,’ ” he explains. “But mutation-directed therapies and immunotherapies for patients with metastatic tumors have side effects. Can we think of a way that we can target these tumors in a more direct fashion, targeting their ability to move, that’s more selective than for those that are starting to metastasize?”

Step one was establishing a genetic strategy, which was the point of the 2012 paper that identified a class of genes called CDC42 that are important in chemotherapy resistance and the function of some genes in tumor progression.

“These genes are like switches,” says Ganesan, returning to the Mission Impossible scenario. “We use the genetic approach to find out which wire is important or which signaling pathway is important. The next logical question is how do we cut it? How do we target the right switch? Switches go on and off, on and off, on and off, all the time. But they only do something that induces cancer when they’re on. So, how can we develop a drug to target these switches when they are on?”

It was a question perplexing Ganesan when he happened to be in Italy and met Marco De Vivo, group leader of the Molecular Modeling & Drug Discovery Lab at the Italian Institute of Technology (IIT) in Genoa.

“I told him about what I was working on,” Ganesan recalls, “and I said, ‘The switch is important, but how do I target it? How do I make a cancer drug out of it?’ And he said, ‘Oh, I think I could do that.’ I said, ‘Oh, let’s work together.’ So, then we started working together.”

They eventually identified the lead molecule to target the switch, based on computational models, and developed a drug that could bind to it to prevent it from sending a cancer signal. According to Ganesan, the research by the IIT and his own Ganesan Lab offers hope to Stage III patients who would have previously “fallen through the cracks.”

“We’ve made a new chemical that’s never been made before,” he says. “We show how the drug works. And we show that the drug slows cancer growth. But there’s still a journey from having a drug that does that in the models we have and having a drug that we give to people. That’s the journey we’re on right now.”

To take the leap from academic research to clinical therapy, Ganesan, De Vivo and two other partners started Alyra Therapeutics to develop the medication further. The startup is currently in fundraising mode.

To further explain how Ganesan’s research helps him as a practitioner, we shift from the movie theater to the pool hall.

“Great pool players line up three shots ahead of the shot they are playing,” he says. “Like the ball is here and they want to stop it in the right place so they can play the next ball and stop that shot so they can play the next one. That’s the way I think about drugs for patients. You are trying to figure out what will the patient respond to best – that’s your first shot – and when that person responds or does not respond, what do you do next? That’s your next shot, and you have all your shots lined up before you take the first one.”

As a drug developer, he goes through the same process.

“You hit the ball into the first one, and it bounces off where you want to line up the second shot,” he explains. “How are you going to get there? That’s kind of the way I think about things. It’s not just for melanoma or diagnostics of patients but also for other diseases that I treat. Conducting research has really changed the way that I think and care for patients.”

Coming up with therapies to make melanoma and the other diseases he treats less prevalent “is kind of the idea” of his research and practice, he notes. Because patients treated for melanoma often see it return at some point, the direction he is now taking is finding ways to keep it from developing in the first place. One way his team is doing that is by refining theranostics, in which imaging guides diagnostics.

“We are trying to apply theranostics to melanoma,” says Ganesan. “Immunotherapy is the gold standard of treatment. What that does is make the immune system fight the tumor and the tumor goes away. And when it does, it’s amazing because it could be a lifelong cure.”

Why Pigment Doesn’t Always Return in Vitiligo

New research reveals the unique cell-to-cell communication networks that can perpetuate inflammation and prevent re-pigmentation in people with vitiligo disease.

The study appears in the journal JCI Insight.

“In this study, we couple advanced imaging with transcriptomics and bioinformatics to discover the cell-to-cell communication networks between keratinocytes, immune cells and melanocytes that drive inflammation and prevent re-pigmentation caused by vitiligo,” says Anand K. Ganesan, professor of dermatology and vice chair for dermatology research at the University of California, Irvine School of Medicine.

“This discovery will enable us to determine why white patches continue to persist in stable vitiligo disease, which could lead to new therapeutics to treat this disease.”

Vitiligo is an autoimmune skin disease that is characterized by the progressive destruction of melanocytes, which are mature melanin-forming cells in the skin, by immune cells called autoreactive CD8+ T cells that result in patches of white depigmented skin. This disease has shown to cause significant psychological distress among patients. Melanocyte destruction in active vitiligo is mediated by CD8+ T cells, but until now, why the white patches in stable disease persist was poorly understood.

“Until now, the interaction between immune cells, melanocytes, and keratinocytes in situ in human skin has been difficult to study due to the lack of proper tools,” says Jessica Shiu, assistant professor of dermatology and one of the first authors of the study.

“By combining non-invasive multiphoton microscopy (MPM) imaging and single-cell RNA sequencing (scRNA-seq), we identified distinct subpopulations of keratinocytes in lesional skin of stable vitiligo patients along with the changes in cellular compositions in stable vitiligo skin that drive disease persistence. In patients that responded to punch grafting treatment, these changes were reversed, highlighting their role in disease persistence.”

MPM is a noninvasive imaging technique capable of providing images with sub-micron resolution and label-free molecular contrast which can be used to characterize keratinocyte metabolism in human skin. Keratinocytes are epidermal cells which produce keratin.

Most studies on vitiligo have focused on active disease, while stable vitiligo remains somewhat of a mystery. Studies are currently underway to investigate when metabolically altered keratinocytes first appear and how they may affect the re-pigmentation process in patients undergoing treatment.

The findings of this study raise the possibility of targeting keratinocyte metabolism in vitiligo treatment. Further studies are needed to improve the understanding of how keratinocyte states affect the tissue microenvironment and contribute to disease pathogenesis.

This work was possible, in part, through access to the Genomics High Throughput Facility Shared Resource of the Cancer Center Support Grant at the University of California, Irvine and three National Institutes of Health shared instrumentation.

Funding came from the National Institutes of Health, the National Science Foundation, the Simons Foundation, National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin diseases, and the National Cancer Institute.

Click here to read the full article on Futurity.org.

Best Vitamins and Supplements for a Full, Healthy Head of Hair

By: David McGlynn, Men’s Health

So your hair isn’t what it used to be. Maybe your forehead is a little higher, the crown a little thinner. Though male baldness is common—two thirds of men shed at least some of their hair by the time they hit 35—the reasons for it are varied. In addition to genetics, hair loss results from certain diseases, meds, infections, radiation, toxins, and stress. And in some parts of the world, nutritional diseases and vitamin deficiencies can also cause hair to fall out.

Serious vitamin deficits are rare among American men, but scientists have begun to explore whether supplements might slow the rate of hair loss or even help hair grow back. “Though we’ve yet to see large, randomized clinical trials to show that vitamins aid hair growth, a number of smaller studies have shown some results,” says Men’s Health advisor and dermatologist Adnan Nasir, M.D.

The supplements market is awash with products promising to thicken your mane, and vitamins alone aren’t likely to work as well as the prescription treatments or procedures.

What that in mind, we dug into the scientific research to see which vitamins and minerals might be worth checking out. And while you’re looking around, we checked into the most common supplements containing numerous vitamins, herbs, minerals and other natural compounds for hair loss—ones often lumped under the term “nutraceuticals”—for you, too.

Read the full article on the Men’s Health website.

Click here to read UCI , Cedars-Sinai Medical Center and the Arizona College of Osteopathic Medicine research study.

Dual-wavelength fibre-laser platform enables bloodless brain surgery

By: Cynthia E Keen

Photo By: The Optical Society

BLI Director Thomas Milner and BLI Researcher Nitesh Katta involved in development of the fibre laser platform.

A dual-wavelength fibre-laser platform designed for bloodless brain tissue resection has been developed by researchers at the UCI Beckman Laser Institute & Medical Clinic and the University of Texas at Austin. Configuration of the platform for clinical use will enable neurosurgeons to rapidly remove brain tumours, forming the basis of a flexible cutting tool for precision tissue resection.

“Development of the fibre laser platform was enabled by two key scientific advances,” principal investigator Thomas Milner, director of the Beckman Laser Institute, tells Physics World. “The first is the laser dosimetry required to coagulate blood vessels of variable sizes. Large calibre blood vessels (250 µm or larger) have previously evaded laser coagulation due to fast flowing blood. My colleague Nitesh Katta worked out the scientific rationale for establishing the laser dosimetry to coagulate blood vessels up to 1.5 mm in diameter.”

Click here to read the full article on the PhysicsWorld website. 

Milner elected as an ASLMS Board of Directors Basic Science Division Representative

Photo: ASLMS

Institute Director Thomas Milner was elected to a two-year term on the American Society for Laser Medicine and Surgery (ASLMS) Board of Directors as a representative for Basic Science.

Milner officially assumes the office on Saturday, April 30, 2022, after the Annual Business Meeting held in conjunction with the Annual Conference.  

Click here for more information about the ASLMS Board of Directors. 

Berns and Preece selected as Associate Editors of Frontiers Editorial Board of Optics and Photonics

Photo: Frontiers Science News

UCI Beckman Laser Institute & Medical Clinic Founding Director Michael Berns and Assistant Professor Daryl Preece were selected as associate editors on the editorial board of Optics and Photonics, led by Lorenzo Pavesi of University of Trento.  As associate editors, Berns and Preece will play a role in the strategic development of their specialty, while editing manuscripts.

The selection was in recognition of a special issue of three Frontiers journals about Optical Trapping (Laser Tweezers) and Nanosurgery (Laser Scissors), which was one of the top-performing collections in the specialty section Optics and Photonics in 2021.  The research topic attracted 59,807 views and 13,225 downloads.

Co-editors Halina Rubensztein-Dunlop from the University of Queensland in Australia and Monika Ritsch-Marte from the Medical University, Innsbruck in Austria were also selected as associate editors.

 “The success of our special issue is a testament to the high level of interest in the burgeoning field of optics and photonics, and particularly in the sub-specialty area of cellular biophotonics,” stated Berns.

Click here for more information about Frontiers.