Video interview: Tayyaba Hasan on developments in photodynamic therapy
The clinical uses of PDT have expanded, and research is underway on a variety of cancers as well as infectious diseases.
Tayyaba Hasan is a Professor of Dermatology at Harvard Medical School (and the Harvard-MIT Division of Health Sciences and Technology), and Director of the Office for Research Career Development at the Wellman Center for Photomedicine, Massachusetts General Hospital. She received her PhD in Physical Organic Chemistry from the University
Her research involves absorption of light leading to molecular excitation that can be exploited for therapy, treatment monitoring and diagnostics. The best known example of this is in medicine is Photodynamic therapy (PDT). The laboratory focuses on photophysical and biological mechanisms of PDT (such as singlet oxygen formation, cytokine secretion, etc) and exploiting this information for new combination strategies. In addition, programs are targeted on the development of therapies for diagnostic online monitoring of biological and chemical processes in the animal model and for targeted delivery of photoactivatable molecules to specific sites.
She has received numerous awards for her work, including the William Silen Lifetime Achievement in Mentoring Award from Harvard Medical School, and the Pioneers in Biomedical Optics for Bench-to-Bedside Translation from the National Institutes of Health, both in 2009.