Seminar: Adam de la Zerda, "Imaging Cancer Biomolecules using Light, Sound and Bio-orthogonal Chemistry", Monday Feb 14 4PM Allen 101X

Jose Padovani josep at
Fri Feb 10 10:37:41 PST 2012

Hi all,

Please plan on attending this interesting seminar by Adam de la Zerda on dynamics of cancer-specific biomolecules using molecular imaging technologies.

Who: Adam de la Zerda, PhD 
When: Tuesday, Feb 14 4:00-5:00 pm
Where: Allen 101X Auditorium

Title: Imaging Cancer Biomolecules using Light, Sound and Bio-orthogonal Chemistry

Many cancer-specific biomolecules are dynamic in space, time and local environments. Hence,
in order to truly understand their role in cancer progression, it is important to visualize them in
living subjects – their most natural environment. In this talk, we introduce a number of new
molecular imaging technologies as well as new chemistry that allows interrogation of many
cancer biomarkers for the first time. We first introduce photoacoustic molecular imaging, a
technology where short light pulses are converted into ultrasound waves by a contrast molecule.
By measuring the ultrasound waves emanating from the body, one can create a detailed 3D
image of contrast molecules that target cancer. Second we will introduce our current work on a
novel chemistry approach for targeting cancer-specific glycans (sugars). Altered glycan patterns
are a hallmark of cancer but are very difficult to image. We will present a novel chemistry
method for labeling cell-surface glycans based on specific chemical reactions that are orthogonal
to all other biological processes, hence, allowing very specific and sensitive detection.

Dr. Adam de la Zerda will be joining the faculty of Structural Biology at Stanford Medical School in September
2012 as an Assistant Professor. In 2011 Dr. de la Zerda finished his PhD in Electrical Engineering at Stanford
University, and is currently a postdoctoral fellow in Chemistry at UC Berkeley. He is working on the development
of new molecular imaging technologies to visualize and interrogate various biomolecules in cancer. Dr. de la Zerda
has received numerous awards for his research including the Damon Runyon Cancer Research Foundation
Fellowship (2011), Era of Hope Distinguished Predoctoral Award (2011), Best Poster Presentation at SPIE
Photonics West (2009), the Young Investigator Award at the World Molecular Imaging Congress (2008), the
Department of Defense Breast Cancer Research Program Predoctoral Award (2008), and the Bio-X Graduate
Student Fellowship (2008). He published over 13 papers in leading journals including Nature Nanotechnology,
Nature Medicine, Nano Letters, and PNAS, some of which received significant press coverage from Forbes
Magazine, US News and The Washington Post. He holds a number of patents and is the co-founder of a medical
imaging device company, OcuBell Inc. He studied Computer Engineering at the Technion – Israel Institute of
Technology where he graduated with a B.Sc. Summa Cum Laude .

Hope to see you all there.


Jose Padovani
Graduate Student
Electrical Engineering Department
Stanford University
(650) 796-1971

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