Current Lab Members


David I. Walsh
PhD Candidate




B.S., Nuclear Engineering, 2011
Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, Troy, NY


“Microfluidic Immunophenotyping Device for the Diagnosis of Uveitis and Ocular Cancer”

The objective of this project is to create a microfluidic platform capable of characterizing the cellular and cytokine content of vitreous humor. This platform will be of direct benefit to patients suffering from uveitis or primary intraocular lymphoma (PIOL) who need to undergo surgical removal of the vitreous humor (vitreous biopsy) as a means of obtaining a detailed diagnosis of these diseases. A detailed diagnosis is critical for the early detection of PIOL as well as for identifying targeted therapeutic drugs to treat uveitis.  The current approach to analyzing the vitreous biopsy product consists of analysis by a skilled pathologist and flow cytometry. The current approach is limited in its efficacy for two reasons: (1) a large number of cells must typically be present in the sample for both the pathologic and flow cytometry analysis, and (2) the cells typically present in the biopsy sample are fragile and are often damaged in transit between the clinic and analytical laboratories. Indeed, the ‘diagnostic yield,’ which is the proportion of samples from which a conclusive diagnosis can be made, is only around 15% for flow cytometry, as reported in a recent study. The proposed microfluidic approach will be a valuable alternative to the current approach because of its ability to handle small and large sample volumes, immunophenotype cells with the resolution of individual cells, and quantitatively detect small (attomolar) quantities of cytokines.


D.I. Walsh (presenter), F. Cheng, and L. Liu. “Molecular Dynamics Simulation of Fuel and Cladding in Generation-IV Reactors,” American Nuclear Society National Student Conference, Gainsville, FL, April 1-5 2009.

D.I. Walsh (presenter), G.J. Sommer, A.K. Singh. “Rapid Biodosimetry Using an Integrated Microfluidic Immunoassay Platform,” American Nuclear Society National Student Conference, Ann Arbor, MI, April 8-11 2010.

D.I. Walsh (presenter), G.J. Sommer, A.K. Singh. “Rapid Trace Detection of Botulinum Neurotoxin A Using an Integrated Microfluidic Immunoassay Platform,” Sandia Intern Symposium, Livermore, CA, August 5, 2010.

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