Lihong Wang Receives $3.8 million NIH Director’s Pioneer Award

Research to explore transporting light into body’s tissues beyond classical limits for high-sensitivity imaging Read More

From the WUSTL Newroom

Lihong Wang, PhD, has received a National Institutes of Health (NIH) Director’s Pioneer Award to explore novel imaging techniques using light that promise significant improvements in biomedical imaging and light therapy.

One of only 11 recipients of the highly competitive award, Wang was selected from among 600 applicants. The award supports individual scientists of exceptional creativity who propose pioneering — and possibly transforming — approaches to major challenges in biomedical and behavioral research, according to the NIH.

The award will provide Wang with a total budget of $3.8 million over five years.

Wang, the Gene K. Beare Distinguished Professor of Biomedical Engineering at Washington University in St. Louis, says his research will explore transporting light into the body’s tissues far beyond the classical penetration limits for high-sensitivity imaging and low-side-effect therapy.

“I am honored to have received this award from among such a competitive group,” Wang says. “This award will allow us the intellectual freedom and resources to develop a brand new technology. If successfully implemented, it would impact many disciplines of biomedicine with applications, including imaging, such as functional brain imaging and reporter gene imaging; sensing (oximetry and glucometry); manipulation (optogenetics and nerve stimulation); and therapy (photodynamic therapy and photothermal therapy).”

A leading researcher on new methods of cancer imaging, Wang has received more than 30 research grants as the principal investigator with a cumulative budget of more than $38 million. His research on non-ionizing biophotonic imaging has been supported by the NIH, National Science Foundation (NSF), the U.S. Department of Defense, The Whitaker Foundation and the National Institute of Standards and Technology.

“I am extremely pleased and proud that Lihong is receiving this award which recognizes his tremendous creativity and innovativeness,” says Frank Yin, MD, PhD, the Stephen F. and Camilla T. Brauer Distinguished Professor of Biomedical Engineering and chair of the department.

For more from Beth Miller of the WUSTL Newsroom, click here.

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Posted on September 19, 2012
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