Lab Description

The Bioheat Transfer Laboratory at UMBC is focused on performing research in heat and mass transport in biological systems.  We are interested in research projects with clear clinical applications.  The major research projects in the past and ongoing include: development of vascular and continuum heat transfer models for quantifying thermal effects of vasculature in biological tissue; transuretheral microwave/RF hyperthermia for treatment of benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH); development, design, and evaluation of cooling devices for brain and spinal cord injury; design of treatment protocols for bacterial disinfection in root canal using a heating catheter; laser coagulation of choroidal feeder vessels for age-related macular degeneration (AMD) patients; magnetic nanoparticle hyperthermia in cancer treatment; treatment efficacy of laser photothermal therapy; evaluation of accuracy of digital thermometers; thermal effect in artificial joint simulator, imaging processing for skin cancer detection, development of whole body heat transfer for predicting body temperature changes when subject to hot/cold environments, heavy exercise, thermal treatments, or after death; multiscale modeling of nanoparticle transport in porous media; and CO2 capture and storage in power plant industry.  The lab is equipped with a dissection microscope, a thermocouple welder, data acquisition software and hardware for temperature measurements, a dental drill, a heating catheter for root canal procedures, a Transonic Doppler flowmeter for measuring blood flow rate in blood vessels, an RF generator and coils for generating alternating magnetic fields, and a high resolution microCT image facility.  We also have access to computational software such as MATLAB, FORTRAN, ProE, COMSOL, FLUENT, etc.  We have performed both experimental studies in tissue and tissue-equivalent phantom gels.  Theoretical simulations of heat and mass transport in tissue, organs, or the whole body has been routinely conducted using in-house codes and commercially available finite element simulation softwares.  Our research has been supported by NSF, the Whitaker Foundation, American Heart Association, State of Maryland TEDCO fund, the FDA, and UMBC.