Campus alert status is yellow: For the latest campus alert status, news and resources, visit

Search Close Search
Search Close Search
Page Menu

Illuminating Biological Processes With Chemistry

The Lab

The Lab.jpg

Work in our lab uses optical imaging to study live cells and organisms. Our multi-disciplinary approach brings together the areas of synthetic organic chemistry, molecular biology, biochemistry, and cell biology, with translation into mouse models of disease. 

Meet the Lab

Research Focus

Research Focus image.jpg

The current focus of the lab is on the study of bioluminescence and its use to probe biological processes. Our interests range from basic research into the molecular basis for the light-emitting chemistry to its practical application to report on gene expression and enzymatic activity in mouse models of disease. 

Firefly bioluminescence occurs when the enzyme firefly luciferase catalyzes the oxidation of its natural substrate, D-luciferin. Oxidation of this substrate forms an excited-state molecule that is the source of the emitted photon. This bioluminescent reaction is widely used as a sensitive reporter for biological assays. Nonetheless, the properties of luciferase are inherently limited by the ability of the luciferin substrate to access the luciferase, and by its photophysical properties (such as emission wavelength). Work in our lab ranges from curiosity-driven basic science questions (e.g., what are the key molecular features necessary for bioluminescence?) to the directed development and optimization of luciferases and luciferins for bioluminescence imaging in mice using adeno-associated virus (AAV) to deliver designer luciferase-based reporters to specific tissues.

Read More


Total: 1 results
  • Global Current Practice Patterns for the Management of Open Globe Injuries

    Friday, August 20, 2021
    Author(s): Sarah C Miller,Michael J Fliotsos,Grant A Justin,Yoshihiro Yonekawa,Ariel Chen,Annette K Hoskin,Richard J Blanch,Kara Cavuoto,Prajna Meeralakshmi,Rebecca Low,Matthew Gardiner,Tin Yan Alvin Liu,Rupesh Agrawal,Fasika A Woreta,None The International Globe And Adnexal Trauma Epidemiology Study Igates
    Source: American journal of ophthalmology
All Publications


Follow our research, stay in touch – join the lab! 

Contact Us

LRB 805

LRB 870X-Z and LRB 840E

Campus Map (pdf)

508-856-8865 (office)


Mailing Address:
University of Massachusetts Medical School
Attn: Dr. Stephen Miller/BMP Department
364 Plantation St. LRB 805
Worcester, MA 01605

Join Us

We are always interested in applications from qualified candidates at postdoctoral and research associate levels.

Read more here

Undergraduates interested in pursuing a PhD at UMass Medical School should apply directly to the Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences Program.