Optical components and subsystems from micro- to nano-scale in Biophotonics

Optical components and subsystems from micro- to nano-scale are enabling technologies in Biophotonics. The development includes size reduction and packaging, either because this is a requirement for routine application or due to space limitations. An important point here is that the components must be cost-effective, otherwise the systems may not be competitive in the economic sense compared to conventional methods or not able to cut down health care costs.
Accordingly, Photonics4Life aims at supporting research on a European level e.g. by enabling the use of new Biophotonics principles by application of existing micro optics technologies and by developing new technologies and by filling technology gaps along the Biophotonics roadmap.

Examples of joint research projects in Photonics4Life:

  • Towards identification of molecules by means of Raman spectroscopy using lab-on-a-chip micro-optical detection systems. As most present Raman detection systems are still composed of bulky optical components, the scope of this project is to build and develop a micro-optical system that integrates the input light delivery and th output collection of Raman scattering around a microfluidic channel, and to demonstrate its working principle. The project is carried out by VUB, IPHT and FZK.
  • Integrated zebrafish detectro "EmbryoSort". As the title implies it is aimed to develop a machine that is able to do fluorescence sorting for large zebrafish embryos (such machines are so far only available on the level of cells) something which is carried out by hand so far. The work in this project is performed joinlgy by FZK and the VUB.

Contact person(s):


Thienpont Hugo

Prof. Dr. Hugo Thienpont

Phone: +32-2-6293569
Fax: +32-2-6293450
Mail:hthienpo [at] vub [dot] ac [dot] be

Involved partners:

Round Robin Experiment

Raman spectroscopy has already proved its effectiveness in many cases for medical diagnostics such as for cancer, cardiovascular diseases and infections. However, there are no standards in the different working groups, e.g. for sample preparation, implementation of the Raman experiments, spectra pre-treatment, data evaluation, etc.In a round robin experiment, the required groundwork will take place in order to define standardised Raman measurement methods, which will be fundamental for establishing Raman spectroscopy for clinical diagnostic procedures.

Latest News

5th International Conference on Biophotonics

20 March 2017

Continuing the success of the previous meetings held in Sacramento, Ottawa, Jena, and Florence, the 5th conference will come to Perth, Western Australia, running over two full days, and back-to-back with the Science on the Swan medical research conference, which delegates are strongly encouraged to also attend, at discounted rates. [more]

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Visit our wiki to consult our latest technologies and techniques. [more]


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