Andreas H. Hielscher

  • Biomedical Engineering Department Chair

  • Professor



Professor Hielscher leads the recently established Department of Biomedical Engineering and directs research in his Clinical Biophotonics Laboratory (CBL). The mission of the CBL is to establish optical tomography as a viable biomedical imaging modality and transfer this technology into clinical practice. The goal is to develop a
patient-centered approach that addresses all aspects of modern precision medicine in state-of-the-art healthcare. To this end, Prof. Hielscher's team is developing cutting-edge imaging hardware and software that provide 3-dimensional distributions of physiologically relevant parameters such as oxygen saturation or total hemoglobin concentrations and more. This includes the design of wearable devices that allow continuous patient monitoring. The CBL is currently applying this emerging technology in various clinical and preclinical studies that focus on the diagnosis and monitoring breast cancer, arthritis, peripheral artery disease (PAD), and diabetic foot syndrome (DFS). Furthermore, techniques are being developed for real-time monitoring of brain activities.

Dr. Andreas Hielscher is collaborating with clinicians to develop state-of-the-art biomedical optical imaging technology.
Research Interests
Biomedical Imaging, Medical Instrumentation, Biophotonics, Biomedical Optics, Near-Infrared Imaging, Tomography, Image Reconstruction, Medical Imaging Analysis, Wearable Devices, Imaging of: Breast Cancer, Skin Cancer, Prostate Cancer, Rheumatoid Arthritis, Lupus, Peripheral Artery Diseases (PAD), Diabetic foot Syndrome (DFS), Brain, Modeling of Light Transport in Tissue, Equation of Radiative Transfer (ERT), Health.

Los Alamos National Laboratories, Los Alamos, NM, 1995 - 1998
Postdoctoral Fellow, Division Biosciences and Biotechnology

Rice University, Houston, TX, 1991 - 1995
Ph.D., Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering

University of Hannover, Hannover, Germany, 1989 - 1991
"Diplom" (~ Master of Science), Department of Quantum Optics

  1. M.L. Altoe, K. Kalinsky, A. Marone, Hyun Kim, Hua Guo, H. Hibshoosh, M. Tejada, Ka. Crew, M. Accordino, M. Trivedi, D. Hershman, and A.H. Hielscher, “Effects of neoadjuvant chemotherapy on the non-tumor bearing breast assessed by diffusion optical tomography,” submitted to Breast Cancer Research, June 2020.
  2. Y. Kim, A. Marone, G. Danias, W. Tang, H.K. Kim, A.D. Askanase, I. Kymissis, A.H. Hielscher,  “A flexible optical imaging band system for the assessment of arthritis in patients with systemic lupus erythematosus,”  submitted to Advanced Healthcare Materials, June 2020.
  3. M.L. Altoe, K. Kalinsky, A. Marone, H.K. Kim, Hua Guo, H. Hibshoosh, M. Tejada, Ka. Crew, M. Accordino, M. Trivedi, D. Hershman, and A.H. Hielscher, “Changes in diffuse-optical-tomography images during early stages of neoadjuvant chemotherapy correlate with tumor response in different breast cancer subtypes, submitted to Clinical Cancer Research, March 2020.
  4. M.L. Altoe, A. Marone, H.K. Kim, K. Kalinsky, D.L. Hershman, A.H. Hielscher, and R.S. Ha, “Diffuse optical tomography of the breast: a potential modifiable biomarker of breast cancer risk with neoadjuvant chemotherapy,” Biomedical Optics Express 10(8), pp. 4305-4315 (2019). PMID: 31453012; PMCID: PMC6701514; <
  5. A. Marone, J. W. Hoi, M.A. Khalil, H.K. Kim, G. Shrikhande, R. Dayal, A.H. Hielscher, “Modeling of the Hemodynamics in the Feet of Patients with Peripheral Artery Disease,” Biomedical Optics Express 10(2), pp. 657-669 (2019). PMID: 30800506; PMCID: PMC6377885; <>
  6. A.H. Hielscher, J. Ramella-Roman, L.V. Wang, “Pioneer in Biomedical Optics: Introduction to the Special Section in Honor of Steven L. Jacques,” J. Biomedical Optics 23(12):1, December 2018. <>
  7. J.W. Hoi, H.K. Kim, C.J. Fong, L. Zweck, A.H. Hielscher, “Non-contact dynamic diffuse optical tomography imaging system for evaluating lower extremity vasculature,” Biomedical Optics Express, Vol. 9, No. 11, pp. 5597-5614, Oct. 19, 2018. PMID: 30460149; PMCID: PMC6238914 <>
  8. J.E. Gunther, E. Lim, H.K. Kim, M. Flexman, J.A. Campbell, H. Hibshoosh, K. Crew, K. Kalinsky, D.L. Hershman,  A.H. Hielscher, “Dynamic diffuse optical tomography for monitoring neoadjuvant chemotherapy in breast cancer patients,” Radiology  2018 Jun; 287(3):778-786. Epub 2018 Feb 12; PMID: 29431574; PMCID: PMC5978455  [Available on 2018-06-01]; <>
  9. H.K. Kim, L.D. Montejo, J. Jia, A.H. Hielscher, “Frequency-domain optical tomographic image reconstruction algorithm with the simplified spherical harmonics (SP3) light propagation model,” International Journal of Thermal Science 116, 265-277, 2017.  doi: 10.1016/j.ijthermalsci.2017.03.004; PMID: 29062243; PMCID: PMC5649649; <>
  10. C.J. Fong, M. Garzon, J.W. Hoi, H.K. Kim, C.T. Lauren, K. Morel, L. Geller, N. Antonov, N. Weitz, J. Wu, A.H. Hielscher, “Assessment of Infantile Hemangiomas Using a Handheld Wireless Diffuse Optical Spectroscopic Device, Pediatric Dermatology, 2017 May 26. doi: 10.1111/pde.13150. [Epub ahead of print] PMID: 28548465.
  11. E.A. Lim, J.E. Gunther, H.K. Kim, M. Flexman, H. Hibshoosh, K. Crew, B. Taback, J. Campbell, K. Kalinsky, A.H. Hielscher, D.L. Hershman, “Diffuse optical tomography changes correlate with Residual Cancer Burden after neoadjuvant chemotherapy in breast cancer patients” Breast Cancer Research and Treatment 162(3), pp. 533-540 (April 2017); PMID: 28190249; <> [6]
  12. J. Jia, H.K. Kim, A.H. Hielscher, “Fast linear solver for radiative transport equation with multiple right hand sides in diffuse optical tomography, Journal of Quantitative Spectroscopy and Radiative Transfer, Vol. 167, pp. 10-22 (Dec 1, 2015). PMID: 26345531; PMCID: PMC4556172. [9]
  13. M.A. Khalil, H.K. Kim, J.W. Hoi, I.-K. Kim, R. Dayal, G. Shrikhande, A.H. Hielscher, “Detection of Peripheral Arterial Disease Within the Foot Using Vascular Optical Tomographic Imaging: A Clinical Pilot Study,” European J. of Vascular and Endovascular Surgery, Vol 49(1), pp. 83–89 (2015). PMID: 25457299; PMCID: PMC4439381 <> [26]
  14. J.H. Lee, H.K. Kim, C. Chandhanayingyong, F.Y. Lee FY, A.H. Hielscher, “Non-Contact Small Animal Fluorescence Imaging System for Simultaneous Multi-directional Angular-dependent Data Acquisition,” Biomedical Optics Express, Vol. 5, Iss. 7, pp. 2301–2316 (2014). <> eCollection 2014 July 1] PMID: 25071965 [13]
  15. M.L. Flexman, H.K. Kim, J.E. Gunther, E.A. Lim, M.C. Alvarez, E. Desperito, K. Kalinsky D.L. Hershman, A.H. Hielscher, “Optical biomarkers for breast cancer derived from dynamic diffuse optical tomography,” Journal of Biomedical Optics 18(9), 096012 (Sep 18, 2013). <> PMID: 24048367 [46]
  16. L.D. Montejo, J. Jia, H.K. Kim, U.J. Netz, S. Blaschke, G.A. Muller, A.H. Hielscher, “Computer Aided Diagnosis of Rheumatoid Arthritis With Optical Tomography, Part 1: Feature Extraction,” Journal of Biomedical Optics 18(7), 076001 (2013). PMID: 23856915; <> [31]
  17. L.D. Montejo, J. Jia, H.K. Kim, U.J. Netz, S. Blaschke, G.A. Muller, A.H. Hielscher, “Computer Aided Diagnosis of Rheumatoid Arthritis With Optical Tomography, Part 2: Image Classification,” Journal of Biomedical Optics 18(7), 076002 (2013). PMID: 23856916; <> [27]
  18. M. A. Khalil, H.K. Kim, I.-K.Kim, M. Flexman, R. Dayal, G. Shrikhande, and A.H. Hielscher, “Dynamic Diffuse Optical Tomography Imaging of Peripheral Arterial Disease,” Biomedical Optics Express Vol. 3, No. 9, 2288-98, September 2012. PMID: 23024920 [37]
  19. B.J Beattie, D.L.J Thorek, C.R. Schmidtlein, K.S. Pentlow, J.L. Humm. and A.H Hielscher, “Quantitative modeling of Cerenkov light production efficiency from medical radionuclides,” PLoS ONE 7(2):e31402. [doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0031402 (2012)] PMID: 22363636 [69]
  20. S. Sirsi, M. Flexman, F. Vlachos, J. Huang, S.L. Hernandez, H.K. Kim, T.J. Johung, J. Gander, A. Reichstein, B.S. Lampl, A. Wang, A.H. Hielscher, D.J. Yamashiro, J.J. Kandel, M. Borden, “Contrast Ultrasound Allows Identification of Early Responder Tumor Models in Anti-Angiogenic Therapy,” Ultrasound in Medicine and Biology Vol.38, No.6, pp.1019–1029 (2012). [doi: 10.1016/j.ultrasmedbio.2012.01.014] PMID: 22425376 [64]
  21. M.L. Flexman, F. Vlachos, H.K. Kim, S. Sirsi, J. Huang, S.L. Hernandez, T.J. Johung, J. Gander, A. Reichstein, B.S. Lampl, A. Wang, M. Borden, D.J. Yamashiro, J.J. Kandel, A.H. Hielscher, “Monitoring Early Tumor Response to Drug Therapy with Diffuse Optical Tomography,” Journal of Biomedical Optics 17(1), 016014 (2012). [doi: 10.1117/1.JBO.17.1.016014] PMID: 22352664 [20]
  22. M.L. Flexman, H.K. Kim, R. Stoll, M. Khalil, C.J. Fong, A.H. Hielscher, “A wireless handheld probe with spectrally constrained evolution strategies for diffuse optical imaging of tissue,” Review of Scientific Instruments 83(3), pp. 033108 - 033108-8 (2012). [doi: 10.1063/1.3694494] PMID: 22462907 [35]

  1. JH Lee, HK Kim, LIM Emerson, AH Hielscher, “Transrectal Diagnostic Device,” US Patent App. 16/303,706, published as US20200008737A1 on 2020-01-09.
  2. AH Hielscher, M Khalil, R Dayal, IK Parrack, HK Kim, “Dynamic Optical Tomographic Imaging Devices Methods and Systems,” US Patent App. 16/216,137, published as US20190282134A1 on 2019-09-19.
  3. AH Hielscher, ML Flexman, K Yeager , “Interfacing systems, devices, and methods for optical imaging,” US Patent 10,376,150, 2019. published as US10376150B2 on 2019-08-13.
  4. AH Hielscher, ML Flexman, R Stoll, HK Kim, “Compact Optical Imaging Devices, Systems, and Methods,” US Patent App. 16/129,925, published as US20190239751A1 on 2019-08-08.
  5. AH Hielscher, CJ Fong, J Hoi, HK Kim, M Khalil,” Monitoring Treatment of Peripheral Artery Disease (PAD) Using Diffuse Optical Imaging,” US Patent App. 16/093,775, published as US20190125195A1 on 2019-05-02.
  6. HK Kim, AH Hielscher, “Tomographic Imaging Methods, Devices, and Systems,” US Patent App. 16/211,693, published as US20190110024A1 on 2019-04-11.
  7. A.H. Hielscher, A. Marone, I. Kymissis, Y. Kim, A.D. Askanase, “Flexible Optical Imaging Bands and Optical Imaging Methods for the Diagnosis and Monitoring of Systemic Lupus Erythematosus in Finger Joints,” Provisional patent application No. 62/747,728 filed on October 19, 2018.
  8. A.H. Hielscher, H.K. Kim, L.D. Montejo, S. Blaschke, U.J. Netz, G.A. Mueller, J. Beuthan,, “Medical Imaging Devices, Methods, and Systems,” Korean Application No. 2013-7018117, based off PCT/US2011/064723 filed December 12, 2011, allowed September 27, 2018. (patent number pending)
  9. H.K. Kim, A.H. Hielscher, “Tomographic Imaging Methods, Devices, and Systems,“ U.S. Application No. 14/356,924 filed May 8, 2014; based from PCT/US2012/064163 filed November 8, 2012,  allowed September 19, 2018. (patent number pending)
  10.  A.H. Hielscher, C.J. Fong, J. Hoi, H.K. Kim, M. Khalil, M. Khalil, “Monitoring treatment of peripheral artery disease (pad) using diffuse optical imaging,“ PCT/US2017/029027 filed 2017-04-23, WO2017189376A1 filed 2017-11-02.
  11. J.H. Lee, H.K. Kim, E. Lim, A.H. Hielscher, “Transrectal Diagnostic Device,” (PTC/US2017/ 034800, WO2017205808A1), Application filed 2016-05-27, published 2017-05-26.
  12. A.H. Hielscher, H.K. Kim, L. D. Montejo, “Systems, methods, and devices for image reconstruction using combined PDE-constrained and simplified spherical harmonics algorithm,” (PCT/US2013/071269), US Patent No. 9,495,516 (issued November 15, 2016).
  13. A.H. Hielscher, M. Khalil, R. Dayal, I.-K. Kim, H.K. Kim, “Dynamic Optical Tomographic Imaging Devices, Methods, and Systems,” Atty. Docket No. T4356-19064WO01, T4356-18602US01; PCT/US2011/060489, US 13/876,861) US Patent No. 9,429,089 (issued November 15, 2016); Announcement to  intention to grant by  European Patent Office on June 15, 2015.
  14. A.H. Hielscher, H.K. Kim, L. D. Montejo,  “Medical Imaging Devices, Methods, and Systems,” Atty. Docket No. T4356-18601US01, PCT/US2011/064723, US 13/993,592), US Patent No. 9,486,142 (issued November 8, 2016)
  15. A.H. Hielscher, C.F. Fong, “Imaging Interfaces for Full Finger and Full Hand Optical Tomography,” (Invention Report CU13042, Atty. Docket No. T4356-19064WO01, PCT/US13/54897) filed February 12, 2015; published June 4, 2015 (Publication No. 20,150,150,458)
  16. A.H.Hielscher, Y. Li, A. Bur, M. Flexman, J. Masciotti, C.J. Fong, “System and Methods for Dynamic Imaging of Tissue Using Digital Optical Tomography”, US Patent No. 9.037,216 (issued May 19, 2015)
  17. A.H. Hielscher, J.H. Lee, “Systems and Methods for Simultaneous Muli-Directional Imaging for Capturing Tomographic Data,” (CU12122 , PCT/US2012/064245, US 14/356,932,), filed November 8, 2012; National filings for US, Korea, Japan, and Europe submitted May 8, 2014; published November 6, 2014 (Publication No. 20,140,330,116)
  18. H.K. Kim, A.H. Hielscher, “Tomographic Imaging Methods, Devices, and Systems,” (Columbia Invention Report # CU12119, PCT/US2012/064163, Application # US 14/356,924), filed November 8, 2012; National filings for US, Korea, Japan, and Europe submitted May 8, 2014; published October 23, 2014 (Publication No. 20,140,313,305)
  19. A.H. Hielscher, M.L. Flexman, R. Stoll, H.K. Kim, “Compact optical imaging devices, systems, and methods,” (CU12093, PCT/US2012/058065, US 14/348,081), filed September 28, 2012; published August 28, 2014. (Publication No. 20,140,243,681)
  20. A.H. Hielscher, K. Yeager, M.L. Flexman, “Interfacing systems, devices, and methods for optical imaging,” (CU12094, PCT/US2012/058004, application # EP20120837252),filed September 28, 2012; published August 6, 2014 (Publication No. 20,140,236,003)
  21. A.H. Hielscher, H.K. Kim, L. D. Montejo, S. Blaschke, U. Netz, G.A. Mueller, J. Beuthan, “Medical Imaging Devices, Methods, and Systems,” (CU invention reports # M11-007 and M11-122, PCT/US2011/064747, US 13/993,578,) filed Dec 13, 2011; published on March 27, 2014 (Publication No. 20,140,088,415)
  22. J.M. Lasker, A.H. Hielscher, J.M. Masciotti, C.H. Schmitz, M. Schoenecker, "System and Methods for Digital Detection of a Tomographic Signal”, US Patent No. 7,728,986 B2 (issued June 1, 2010)
  23. J.M. Lasker, A.H. Hielscher, J.M. Masciotti, C.H. Schmitz, M. Schoenecker, "Digital Signal Processor Based Detection System, Method, and Apparatus for Optical Tomography” US Patent No. 7,463,362 B2 (issued December 9, 2008)
  24. A.H. Hielscher, J. Mourant, I. Bigio, "Characterization of highly scattering media by measurement of diffusely backscattered polarized light," US Patent No. 6,011,626 (issued January 4, 2000)

About Me:

I came to Tandon in the summer of 2021 as the new chair of the BME department. Before I was at Columbia for 20 years and chaired the Provost's Tenure Track Advisory Committee.

My Science:

Biomedical Optics, Clinical Studies, Inverse Problems

Research News

September 14, 2023

September 29, 2021