Welcome to the Wang Lab!

NCI-Funded Program Targets Early Detection of Liver Cancer

covered in MHealth Lab, Jina Sawani, Nov 14, 2018

The rapidly rising incidence of liver cancer motivates the need for more effective methods of surveillance and increased detectability of early cancer in patients with cirrhosis. The Wang Lab has been funded by the Division of Cancer Prevention (DCP) in the National Cancer Institute (NCI) at the National Institutes of Health (NIH) to establish a Research Center in the Translational Liver Cancer (TLC) Consortium. The overarching goal of this Center is to advance new methods of molecular imaging to determine the natural history of indeterminant liver nodules. Patients undergoing liver cancer surveillance frequently have <1-2 cm nodules seen on conventional imaging whose benign versus malignant potential cannot be definitively determined. Other members of the TLC include the Baylor College of Medicine, UT Southwestern Medical Center, George Washington University, and UCLA.

Chen Y, Zhou Q, Li X, Wang F, Heist K, Kuick R, Owens SR, Wang TD. Ultra-small iron oxide nanoprobe for EGFR-targeted MRI of hepatocellular carcinoma in vivo. Bioconjugate Chemistry 2017;28:2794-2803. PubMed

U of M Researchers Awarded NIH Grant for Early Detection of Esophageal Cancer

covered in Michigan Medicine, Lauren Love, June 16, 2017

The Wang Lab has been renewed for funding by the Divisions of Cancer Prevention (DCP) and Cancer Biology (DCB) at the National Institutes of Health (NIH) to support a Research Center in the Barrett’s Esophagus Translational Research Network (BETRNet). The overarching goal of this Center is to advance new methods of imaging to visualize the effects of spatial distribution of genetic alterations in Barrett's Esophagus by evaluating tumor heterogeneity and their impact on the progression toward esophageal adenocarcinoma. We will build on our previous results in genomic characterization, peptide biochemistry, and clinical translation to achieve our ultimate goal to perform early cancer detection at the stage of high-grade dysplasia where therapeutic intervention can be most effective.

Abrams JA, Appelman HD, Beer DG, Berry LD, Chak A, Falk GW, Fitzgerald RC, Ginsberg GG, Grady WM, Joshi BP, Lynch JP, Markowitz S, Richmond ES, Rustgi AK, Seibel EJ, Shaheen NJ, Shyr Y, Umar A, Wang KK, Wang TC, Wang TD, Yassin R. Barrett's Esophagus Translational Research Network (BETRNet): the pivotal role of multi-institutional collaboration in esophageal adenocarcinoma research. Gastroenterology 2014;146:1586-90. PubMed

Molecular Imaging Advances Cardiovascular Medicine

covered in Michigan Medicine, Haley Ottman, Feb 10, 2017

The Wang Lab has published ground breaking work on use of molecular imaging to assess risk for rupture of atherosclerotic plaques from increased presence of matrix-metalloproteinases. We demonstrate a novel endoscope that collects multi-modal images of vulnerable plaques by targeting proteolytic activity with a fluorescent probe activated by these enzymes. This cutting edge technology can be used to identify subtle thrombogenic lesions and define the risk for plaque rupture. Multimodal laser-based angioscopy may be a platform for future diagnosis, prognosis, and image-guided therapy of atherosclerosis.

Savastano LE, Zhou Q, Smith A, Vega K, Murga-Zamalloa C, Gordon D, McHugh J, Zhao L, Wang M, Pandey A, Thompson BG, Xu J, Zhang J, Chen YE, Seibel EJ, Wang TD. Multimodal laser-based angioscopy for structural, chemical, and biological imaging of atherosclerosis. Nature Biomedical Engineering 2017;1:0023. PubMed

Imaging Technology and Molecular Probes Advance Gastrointestinal Therapy

covered in Colleagues in Care, Carolyn Mogan, July 29, 2016

Research in the Wang Lab focuses on molecular imaging in the digestive tract, and emphasizes the development and validation of novel molecular imaging methods and systems for early cancer detection. Molecular probes are developed to visualize cell surface targets that are over-expressed in a number of human diseases. With the instrument and peptides developed in the Wang lab, cancer diagnoses can be made based on the expression of molecular targets specific to certain diseases, rather than on the gross visible appearance of mass lesions.

Lee JH, Wang TD. Molecular endoscopy for targeted imaging in the digestive tract. Lancet Gastroenterology and Hepatology 2016;1:147-55. PubMed

Located on the Medical School campus near the main hospital, in between the Engineering and Science campuses, the Wang Lab focuses on cutting edge translational research that bridges the College of Engineering with the School of Medicine at the University of Michigan. Collaborative efforts between investigators from these two separate campuses accelerate biomedical research performed to advance high resolution imaging methods to investigate the molecular properties of biology and disease within the native tissue microenvironment in living animals and human subjects.

Bridging medicine with engineering

We are located in the BSRB

Medical Procedures Unit, University Hospital

Photonics West, Moscone Center

Thanksgiving at Asia City, Ypsilanti, MI

UMHS-PUHSC Joint Institute, Beijing, China

Christmas party at NCRC, Ann Arbor, MI

Thomas D. Wang, MD,PhD

PI: Thomas D. Wang, MD, PhD

Professor of Medicine, Biomedical Engineering, Mechanical Engineering

H. Marvin Pollard Collegiate Professor of Endoscopy Research

University of Michigan

Dr. Wang is a physician scientist who has developed a number of novel methodologies for in vivo imaging in the digestive tract for early cancer detection and staging. He has pioneered the use of fluorescence-labeled peptides to detect overexpressed cell surface targets in vivo to identify pre-malignant mucosa. Furthermore, he has developed the first video endoscope that is sensitive to fluorescence for rapidly identifying pre-malignant lesions over large mucosal surface areas. This approach has been patented, commercialized, and developed for clinical use, and is widely cited as a major impetus for the accelerated convergence of fluorescence spectroscopy and endoscopy. He has mentored a total of 3 visiting scholars, 5 junior faculty (research investigators), 34 post-docs (research fellows), 4 M.D. (clinical) fellows, 13 graduate students, 3 medical residents, 2 medical students, and 9 undergraduates. In addition, he has filed 18 patents with the US Patent & Trademark Office (USPTO) on novel optical imaging technologies.

M.D, Harvard Medical School in Health Sciences and Technology (HST)

PhD in Medical Engineering/Medical Physics, MIT

MS, Electrical Engineering, MIT

BS, Mathematics, Physics, Harvey Mudd College

Residency, Internal Medicine, Boston University

Fellowship, Gastroenterology, Stanford University

Biology Laboratory: Professor Wang has a biochemistry and molecular biology laboratory located on the 1st floor in the Biomedical Science Research Building (BSRB) at the University of Michigan. This laboratory is ~2,000 square feet in size, and includes 14 wet benches, desks with computers, and common space shared with other research faculty. The laboratory is equipped with 4, -20, -80 deg C, and liquid nitrogen freezers, water baths, top loading and analytical balances, orbital shakers, microcentrifuges, high speed centrifuges, pH meter, cell culture facility equipped with a refrigerated centrifuge, chromatography refrigerator, two sterile laminar flow hoods, dual chamber CO2 incubators, and several brightfield microscopes including white light and fluorescence for immunofluorescence and histology.

Optics Laboratory: Professor Wang also has an optical imaging laboratory located on the Level D basement in the Biomedical Science Research Building (BSRB). This space is used to develop prototype instruments for optical imaging. This laboratory is ~1000 square feet in size, and includes 2 optical tables with a variety of optical mounts, positioners, and stages. This facility has equipment needed to develop novel optical imaging systems, including function generators, spectrometer, laser beam profiler, optical spectrum analyzer, oscilloscopes, photomultiplier tube (PMT) detectors, and power supplies. Equipment is also available for assembly, alignment, and integration of the novel prototype endoscopes. Software for imaging system development include Matlab, Labview, Solid Works, and Zemax.

Center for Molecular Imaging (CMI): This state-of-the-art small animal imaging facility houses instruments for performing real time imaging, including Olympus FV1000MPE twin multi-photon microscope with Spectra-Physics Deep See femtosecond lasers, Endra Nexus 128 photoacoustic tomography scanner, Edgewave diode pumped Q-switched Nd-YAG laser, Opotek Phocus laser with optical parametric oscillator (OPO), IVIS Spectrum, 200, and 100 (Caliper) systems, Siemens Inveon PET/CT, GE Healthcare integrated eXplore speCZT/CT 120, and two Varian horizontal bore MRI systems (9.4, 7, and 3T).

Medical Procedures Unit (MPU): This state-of-the-art facility, we perform cutting-edge studies in a broad patient population from the state of Michigan and the neighboring midwest. The MPU supports “first-in-human” clinical studies to demonstrate safety and early evidence of efficacy for fluorescently-labeled peptides and novel MEMS-based imaging instruments. There are 12 endoscopy rooms and over 60 Olympus endoscopes to support completion of over 30,000 procedures each year. The MPU offers multiple diagnostic and advanced therapeutic services, including ERCP, EUS, EMR, ESD, POEM, balloon-assisted endoscopy, and radio-frequency ablation. Two procedure rooms provide fluoroscopy. The University of Michigan Medical Center is a major referral center for gastrointestinal diseases. Michigan is widely recognized as a Center of Excellence for the treatment of digestive tract cancers. The major teaching hospitals include the University Medical Center and the Ann Arbor VA Medical Center, which have 960 and 420 beds respectively. The inpatient gastroenterology consultations at the University Hospital average between 200-250 per month and the outpatient clinic visits average between 800-1000 per month. In addition, the GI Physiology Lab provides various tests, such as mannometry, for evaluation of functional gastrointestinal diseases.