||Fort Sam Houston, TX 78234
|Michael Lee Denton
The primary objective of this research is to investigate the immediate impact of optical radiation on metabolically important biomolecules in cells. Mechanisms of interest include photobiomodulation using low level VIS/NIR irradiation, photo-oxidation via blue/short green light, and photothermal damage pathways. Research will utilize biophysical methods, such as UV/VIS transient absorption and 2D-IR spectroscopy using state-of-the-art sub-100 femtosecond (fs) pulsed laser systems, to identify initial chromophores and subcellular localizations responsible for relevant photochemical and photothermal phenomena. Relevant biological systems include cultured mammalian cells, isolated organelles (e.g., mitochondria), and purified proteins (e.g., respiratory chain supercomplexes). Our group collaborates with other laboratories within AFRL, as well as with those at prominent universities to develop innovative methods and approaches to discover novel laser bioeffects. The laboratory offers extensive laser facilities and support equipment, including Light Conversion’s TOPAS Twins, Ultrafast Systems’ Helios Fire, regenerative amplified fs laser systems, FLIR thermal cameras, picosecond streak cameras, and core computational facilities. Using experimental biophysics and molecular dynamic modeling, the Optical Radiation Branch will be in a position to define game changing capabilities for protection from, and using, directed energy on the modern battlefield.
O’Connor, S.P., Powell, S.M., Rickman, J.M., Pope, N.J., Noojin, G.D., Scully, M.O., Denton, M.L., Yakovlev, V.V., Mammalian complex III heme dynamics studied with pump-probe spectroscopy and red light illuminations, Biomed. Opt. Express, 2021, 12(11), 7082-7091.
O’Connor, S.P., S.M. Powell, J.M. Rickman, N.J. Pope, G.D. Noojin, M.O. Scully, M.L. Denton, V.V. Yakovlev, 2021, Transient absorption spectroscopy to explore cellular pathways to photobiomodulation, J. Photochem. Photobiol. B, Biology 222,112271. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jphotobiol.2021.112271.
Pope, N.J., S.M. Powell, J.C. Wigle, M.L. Denton, 2020, Wavelength- and irradiance-dependent changes in intracellular nitric oxide level, J. Biomed. Opt. 24(6), 065002. https://doi.org/10.1117/1.JBO.25.8.085001.
Lalonde, J.W., G.D. Noojin, N.J. Pope, S.M. Powell, V.V. Yakovlev, M.L. Denton, 2021, Continuous assessment of metabolic activity of mitochondria using resonance Raman microspectroscopy, J. Bio. 14(4), e202000384, DOI: 10.1002/jbio.202000384
Laser bioeffects; Spectroscopy; Biochemistry; Physical chemistry; Light-induced conformational change; Photochemistry; Dynamic protein structure; Molecular dynamics; Mammalian cells;