Zoomposium 13: 11 December 2020

Published: 10 December 2020

Prof DELPHINE GOURDON: 'Mechanobiology and tribology of materials' Dr WILLIAM PETTERSSON: 'Algorithms on graphs: solving all the problems' Dr CAROLINE MUELLENBROICH: '3-photon microscopy and optogenetic stimulation deep inside the heart'

Watch Zoomposium 13 (passcode ZqS7ti.&)


Pr Delphine Gourdon, James Watt School of Engineering

'Mechanobiology and tribology of materials'

Our laboratory integrates approaches from engineering, physics and biology to focus on mechanobiology and tribology of biomaterials. In the first project, we use freezecasting techniques to generate fibronectin-collagen 3D matrices with tuneable microarchitecture, protein conformation and mechanics that mimic healthy or tumorous microenvironments. These platforms are utilized to investigate effects of the microenvironment on tumour growth and metastasis. In the second project, we use a unique tool called the Surface Forces Apparatus to characterize the lubrication of synovial fluid components. Our research aims at finding cheap alternatives to synovial fluid for use in articular joints and prosthetic implants in vivo.


Dr William Pettersson, School of Computing Science

'Algorithms on graphs: solving all the problems'

I am a Research Associate in the School of Computing Science, where I am currently working on multi-layer graph algorithms.

Graphs can model many real-world problems, from helping allocating kidney donors to finding adoptive families for children in need and modelling the spread of infectious diseases. Multi-layer graphs allow us to model different aspects of these problems in different ways to determine characteristics of the graph as a whole. I particularly enjoy working with real-world applications, as they often have inherent structure that turns NP-hard problems into tractable problems that I can quickly solve.


Dr Caroline Muellenbroich, School of Physics & Astronomy

'3-photon microscopy and optogenetic stimulation deep inside the heart'

My research interests lie primarily in the field of novel optical imaging and stimulation technology to investigate excitable tissues, i.e. the brain and the heart. Currently, I am interested in the challenge of overcoming the depth limitation in highly scattering tissues, for example with 3-photon microscopy or novel quantum sources of light. Additionally, I am interested in causal correlations between tissue structure and its physiological function by employing tissue clearing and light-sheet microscopy. 

This is a highly interdisciplinary field where the road from data to information involves many disciplines. Areas of interest for collaboration include: 

  • Relevant studies in the heart or the brain which would benefit from deep 3-photon microscopy (>600um) or imaging of clarified tissue with light-sheet microscopy 
  • Complementary expertise in optics, photonics, engineering relevant to microscopy technology development, particularly light delivery in scattering media 
  • Modelling of biological tissues and organs, e.g. of action potential propagation in cardiac tissue including optogenetic stimulation 
  • Extraction of information on biological structures from large fluorescence image data sets, e.g. automated segmentation, tracing and counting 

First published: 10 December 2020