Past Event

BME WEBINAR SERIES: Elizabeth Hillman, PhD, Columbia University

October 2, 2020
11:00 AM - 12:00 PM
On Friday, October 2nd @ 11:00AM EDT, we welcome Elizabeth Hillman, a Herbert and Florence Irving Professor at Columbia University’s Zuckerman Mind Brain Behavior Institute and a Professor in the departments of Biomedical Engineering and Radiology as she presents, "High-speed 3D microscopy to study the dynamics of life." ABOUT THE SEMINAR Living things change over time. Harnessing the dynamics of life can permit interrogation of movements, cellular function, blood flow changes and physiological responses to perturbations and drugs. While many imaging systems are optimized for resolution at the expense of imaging speed, we have focused on developing imaging methods that enable holistic imaging of biological systems at higher and higher speeds. One method that we have developed, swept confocally aligned planar excitation (SCAPE) microscopy is a single-objective light sheet method that can image living samples in 3D at cellular resolution at up to 300 volumes per second, with high signal to noise and minimal photodamage. We have applied SCAPE microscopy to a wide range of living samples, including small organisms such as C. elegans worms, zebrafish larvae and fruit flies, but also intact mouse olfactory epithelium and in-vivo mouse brain. In these systems, we have leveraged the power of genetically encoded fluorescent indicators of cellular activity, as well as tracking and extracting 4D movements and tissue deformations to uncover new physiological processes. We have also developed a clinical version of SCAPE, for high-speed in-situ histopathology, as well as systems capable of high-throughput and high-content imaging of fresh, fixed, cleared and expanded samples. In further work, we have developed high-speed meso-scale and multi-spectral methods for imaging biological dynamics, permitting extraction of a wide range of valuable spatial and temporal features of physiological systems using novel dynamic unmixing image analysis approaches. Our work demonstrates the power of high-speed imaging for biomedical applications, opening up new ways to interrogate the real-time and functional features of physiology and disease across scales. ABOUT THE SPEAKER Elizabeth Hillman is a Herbert and Florence Irving Professor at Columbia University’s Zuckerman Mind Brain Behavior Institute and a Professor in the departments of Biomedical Engineering and Radiology. Hillman obtained her Ph.D. in Medical Physics and Bioengineering at University College London. After post-doctoral research at Massachusetts General Hospital, Harvard Medical School, she became faculty at Columbia University in 2006. She is now a full Professor in the Departments of Biomedical Engineering and Radiology, and a member of Columbia’s Zuckerman Mind Brain Behaviour Institute. Bringing her engineering and physics expertise to biomedical questions, Elizabeth Hillman has developed a wide range of multi-scale in-vivo imaging methods including SCAPE microscopy for high-speed 3D imaging. She has also developed a range of techniques for dynamic analysis of high-speed imaging data. She uses these methods to study whole-brain neural dynamics in a range of model organisms, as well as the cellular mechanisms of blood flow regulation in the brain as a way to improve human brain imaging. Hillman is a fellow of the Optical Society of America (OSA), the society of photo-optical instrumentation (SPIE) and the American Institute for Medical and Biological Engineering (AIMBE). She received the 2011 OSA Adolf Lomb Medal for contributions to optics at a young age, the 2018 SPIE Biophotonics Technology Innovator Award, a 2020 Royal Microscopical Society Mid-Career Scientific Achievement Award and early career awards from the Wallace Coulter Foundation, National Science Foundation and Human Frontier Science Program.

Contact Information

Alexis Newman