Group leader Prof. dr. Johannes de Boer
The long-term goal of the research is to develop the next generation optical techniques for the diagnosis, understanding, and treatment of disease.
In clinical medicine, significant progress in screening, diagnosis and treatment has been fuelled by the exact sciences and has for instance led to imaging techniques such as X-ray or Computed Tomography, positron emission tomography, ultrasound imaging and magnetic resonance imaging. Optical techniques have the advantages of using non-ionizing radiation, being non- or minimally invasive with unprecedented resolution (down to molecular level), and having the capability of spectroscopic analysis of tissue. In our group basic science experts and leading clinicians work together closely to develop and evaluate in clinical practice new instruments for (endoscopic) in vivo optical diagnosis (“The Optical Biopsy”). In vivo diagnosis provides the platform for immediate treatment with minimally invasive instrumentation, which leads to improved care and cost reduction.
The key for successful clinical acceptance of new optical techniques is the quantification of (physiological) relevant parameters for disease characterization. Therefore, the determination of optical diagnostic criteria like the path-length that the light has travelled, scattering and absorption, fluorescence, birefringence and molecular vibrations in the tissue in combination with appropriate and novel spectroscopic techniques and localized treatments will be an important challenge.
These objectives are being realized by bringing together Sciences Departments and Medical Centers to create a multidisciplinary environment of MD’s and PhD’s promoting close collaboration and feedback.
Current collaborations include the Rotterdam Eye Hospital and the Rotterdam Ophthalmic Institute, the Neuroscience center and the department of pulmonology at the VUmc (Dr. T. Sutedja).
Student projects and vacancies
There are always opportunities for motivated students to do their BSc or MSc research projects in our group. Have a look at the research topics we work on and contact the researchers for more information.
For information on current PhD and postdoc positions, contact Prof. dr. Johannes F. de Boer.