Michael Berns, Ph.D.Michael Berns, Ph.D.

Laser microsurgery – Dr. Berns’ research centers around studying basic cellular problems from a functional and structural point of view. Dr. Berns’ laboratory has developed and combined sophisticated techniques and instrumentation such as lasers, computers, light and scanning EM to study a variety of problems:

  1. mechanisms of chromosome movement and spindle fiber organization
  2. cell movement
  3. structure and organization of chromosomes, nucleoli, and mitochondria
  4. cardiac cell contractility
  5. cellular carcinogenesis and cancer diagnosis and treatment
  6. biophysics of light interaction with cellular systems
  7. laser applications in clinical medicine (oncology, surgery, cardiology, ophthalmology)
  8. computer enhancement of optical images for cell biology, genetics, and clinical medicine.

In addition, a major emphasis of the program is to facilitate the application of basic laser research to problems of the real world. This is accomplished by creating linkages between the laser program and a variety of industrial associates who translate the research into viable technology in the health and biotechnology field.

Recent Publications

  • Gomez-Godinez V, Wu T, Sherman AJ, Lee CS, Liaw LH, Zhongsheng Y, Yokomori K, Berns MW. (2010) Analysis of DNA double-strand break response and chromatin structure in mitosis using laser microirradiation. Nucleic Acids Res. [Epub ahead of print]
  • Stephens J, Mohanty SK, Genc S, Kong X, Yokomori K, Berns MW. (2009) Spatially sculpted laser scissors for study of DNA damage and repair. J Biomed Opt. 14(5):054004.
  • Kreuter KA, Mahon SB, Mukai DS, Su J, Jung WG, Narula N, Guo S, Wakida N, Raub C, Berns MW, George SC, Chen Z, Brenner M. (2009) Detection and monitoring of early airway injury effects of half-mustard (2-chloroethylethylsulfide) exposure using high-resolution optical coherence tomography.J Biomed Opt. 14(4):044037.
  • S, Zhang J, Genc S, Kim MK, Berns MW, Chen Z. (2009) Digital holographic microscopy for quantitative cell dynamic evaluation during laser microsurgery. Opt Express.17(14):12031-8.
  • Kong X, Mohanty SK, Stephens J, Heale JT, Gomez-Godinez V, Shi LZ, Kim JS, Yokomori K, Berns MW. (2009) Comparative analysis of different laser systems to study cellular responses to DNA damage in mammalian cells.Yu L, Mohanty. Nucleic Acids Res. 37(9):e68. Epub 2009 Apr 7.
  • Mohanty SK, Mohanty KS, Berns MW.(2008) Manipulation of mammalian cells using a single-fiber optical microbeam. J Biomed Opt.13(5):054049.
  • Yu L, Mohanty S, Liu G, Genc S, Chen Z, Berns MW. (2008) Quantitative phase evaluation of dynamic changes on cell membrane during laser microsurgery. J Biomed Opt. 13(5):050508.
  • Mohanty SK, Reinscheid RK, Liu X, Okamura N, Krasieva TB, Berns MW. (2008) In-depth activation of channelrhodopsin 2-sensitized excitable cells with high spatial resolution using two-photon excitation with a near-infrared laser microbeam. Biophys J. 95(8):3916-26. Epub 2008 Jul 11.
  • Berns MW.(2007) Optical tweezers: tethers, wavelengths, and heat. Methods Cell Biol.82:457-66.
  • Berns MW. (2007) A history of laser scissors (microbeams). Methods Cell Biol. 82:1-58. Review.
  • Wakida NM, Lee CS, Botvinick ET, Shi LZ, Dvornikov A, Berns MW. (2007) Laser nanosurgery of single microtubules reveals location-dependent depolymerization rates. J Biomed Opt. 12(2):024022.
  • Gomez-Godinez V, Wakida NM, Dvornikov AS, Yokomori K, Berns MW. (2007) Recruitment of DNA damage recognition and repair pathway proteins following near-IR femtosecond laser irradiation of cells. J Biomed Opt.12(2):020505.

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