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Mission Statement:

Antibiotic resistance of pathogenic microbes in healthcare and community settings is a quickly growing and extremely dangerous health threat. There is consequently a critical need for the development of alternative therapeutics. The mission of Dai lab is to develop light-based nonpharmacological approaches to counteract the increasing emergence of antibiotic-resistant infections.

Research Focus:

Antimicrobial blue light: Antimicrobial blue light (aBL), a novel light-based approach, has attracted increasing attention due to its intrinsic antimicrobial effect without the involvement of exogenous photosensitizers. The mechanism of action of aBL is still not fully understood. A common hypothesis is that aBL excites naturally occurring endogenous PS (iron-free porphyrins or/and flavins) within microbial cells and subsequently leads to the production of cytotoxic oxidative species.

Antimicrobial photodynamic therapy: Antimicrobial photodynamic therapy (aPDT) uses a combination of non-toxic photosensitizers (PSs) together with harmless visible light. Originally developed as a tumor therapy some of its most successful applications are for non-malignant disease such as localized infections.

VIC Projects List

Highlighted Publications

Leanse LG, ** Goh XS, Cheng J-X, Hooper DC, Dai T JCI Insight 2020; 5:134343. PMID: 32493838

Antimicrob Agents Chemother. 2013 Mar;57(3):1238-45. doi: 10.1128/AAC.01652-12. Epub 2012 Dec 21. PubMed PMID: 23262998; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC3591931. Dai T, Gupta A, Huang YY, Yin R, Murray CK, Vrahas MS, Sherwood ME, Tegos GP, Hamblin MR.

J Infect Dis. 2014 Jun 15;209(12):1963-71. doi: 10.1093/infdis/jit842. Epub 2013 Dec 30. PubMed PMID: 24381206; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC4038138. Zhang Y, Zhu Y, Gupta A, Huang Y, Murray CK, Vrahas MS, Sherwood ME, Baer DG, Hamblin MR, Dai T.

Virulence. 2016 Jul 3;7(5):536-45. doi: 10.1080/21505594.2016.1155015. Epub 2016 Feb 24. PubMed PMID: 26909654; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC5026794. Zhang Y, Zhu Y, Chen J, Wang Y, Sherwood ME, Murray CK, Vrahas MS, Hooper DC, Hamblin MR, Dai T.

Invest Ophthalmol Vis Sci. 2017 Jan 1;58(1):586- 593. doi: 10.1167/iovs.16-20272. PubMed PMID: 28129422; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC5283079. Zhu H, Kochevar IE, Behlau I, Zhao J, Wang F, Wang Y, Sun X, Hamblin MR, Dai T.

J Infect Dis. 2019 Jul 31;220(5):873-881. doi: 10.1093/infdis/jiz018. PubMed PMID: 30629196; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC6667797. Wang Y, Ferrer-Espada R, Baglo Y, Goh XS, Held KD, Grad YH, Gu Y, Gelfand JA, Dai T.

Adv Sci (Weinh). 2019 Mar 30;6(11):1900030. doi: 10.1002/advs.201900030. eCollection 2019 Jun 5. PMID: 31179216 Dong PT, Mohammad H, Hui J, Leanse LG, Li J, Liang L, Dai T, Seleem MN, Cheng JX.

Antimicrob Agents Chemother. 2011 Dec;55(12):5710-7. doi: 10.1128/AAC.05404-11. Epub 2011 Sep 19. PubMed PMID: 21930868; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC3232820.
Dai T, de Arce VJB, Tegos GP, Hamblin MR.

Lasers Surg Med. 2010 Jan;42(1):38-44. doi: 10.1002/lsm.20887. PubMed PMID: 20077489; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC2820267. Dai T, Tegos G, Zhiyentayev T, Mylonakis E, Hamblin MR.

Research Team

Tianhong Dai, PhD

Principal Investigator

Jeffrey Gelfand, MD

Senior Scientist

Leon Leanse, PhD

Research Fellow

Xiaojing Liu, MD, PhD

Research Fellow

Carolina Dos Anjos, MS, DVM

Graduate Student

Gizem Dilara Ozdemir

Graduate Student



2020-2021 Sana Mushtaq BS, Pakistan

2013-2014 Yingbo Zhu, MD. Medical Student, School of Medicine, Tongji University

2013-2014 Rehab M Amin, PhD. Assistant Professor Cairo University Egypt

2013-2016 Yucheng Wang, MD. Resident Aviation General Hospital China

2014-2015 Hong Zhu, MD, PhD. Associate Professor Shanghai First People’s Hospital, Shanghai Jiao Tong. University China

2015 Xinyi Jiang. Medical Student School of Medicine Tongji University China

2015 Min Lu, PhD. Research Fellow Wellman Center for Photomedicine MGH; Shanghai Jiao Tong University China

2015-2016 Moonseok Kim, PhD. Research Professor Institute of Basic Science and Korea University

2015-2016 Shivani Krovvidi, MS. Research Assistant Gel4Med Harvard Innovation Lab Boston

2016-2017 Olivia D Harrington, BS. Research Technician Wellman Center for Photomedicine, MGH Boston

2016-2017 Imran Ahmed, BS. Research Technician Wellman Center for Photomedicine MGH Boston

2016-2017 Yanyan Fang, PhD. Teacher Tsinghua University High School China

2016-2017 Quan Yan, MD, PhD. Attending Physician Shanghai First People’s Hospital Shanghai Jiao Tong University China

2016-2018 Ying Wang, MD, PhD. Attending Physician Chines PLA General Hospital Beijing China

2017-2018 Mengie Wu, MD, PhD. Research Fellow Shriners Hospitals for Children Boston; Department of Surgery MGH Boston; Associate Professor Zhejiang Stormology Hospital Zhejiang University China

2017-2019 Raquel Ferrer Espada, PhD. Research Fellow Wellman Center for Photomedicine MGH Boston

2017-2019 Yan Baglo, PhD. Posdoctoral Fellow Fischell Department of Bioengineering University of Maryland

2017-2019 Sharon X. Goh, BS. Research Technician 1 Wellman Center fir Photomedicine MGH Boston

2019 Qihang Chang. Medical Student School of Medicine Tongji University China

2019 Xiaojing Zeng, BS. Medical Student School of Medicine Tongji University China


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