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Prasad selected IEEE fellow

Paras Prasad (right) works in the lab with medicinal chemistry student Julia Bulmahn. Photo: Douglas Levere

By CHARLOTTE HSU

Published January 5, 2018

Paras Prasad

Paras Prasad, executive director of UB’s Institute for Lasers, Photonics and Biophotonics, has been named a fellow of IEEE, a professional association devoted to advancing technology for humanity.

The honor, effective Jan. 1, recognizes Prasad’s contributions in biophotonics, nanophotonics and novel biomedical technology.

The designation is conferred by the IEEE Board of Directors upon people with an outstanding record of accomplishments in IEEE fields of interest. The total number selected in any one year cannot exceed one-tenth of 1 percent of the total voting membership. IEEE fellow is the highest grade of membership and is recognized by the technical community as a prestigious honor and an important career achievement.

At UB, Prasad is a SUNY Distinguished Professor in the departments of Chemistry, Physics, Medicine and Electrical Engineering.

He is an internationally known expert on the study of light. In the 1990s, he became a pioneer in the field of light-based nanomedicine, which uses tiny, light-activated particles to diagnose, monitor and treat disease. Three decades later, he remains one of the most prominent thinkers in this field.

A prolific inventor and researcher, Prasad has received numerous regional, national and international awards for his lifetime achievements.

At UB, Prasad has worked with colleagues to develop or study a wide range of new materials that could advance technology in health care and other fields, ultimately improving lives around the world.

These materials include miniature luminescent crystals that could be used in image-guided surgery, light-activated particles that could enable the development of new bioimaging technologies for disease detection, and onion-like nanoparticles whose specially designed layers could convert invisible near-infrared light to higher energy blue and ultraviolet light efficiently — an advancement that could improve the performance of technologies ranging from deep-tissue imaging to security inks used for printing money.

In addition to conducting research, Prasad has mentored numerous students and researchers in the fields of optics and photonics. Notably, he helped guide the work of a UB postdoctoral researcher who went on to found a UB spinoff company in France called Nanobiotix, which is now a publicly traded company worth nearly 300 million Euros.

The IEEE, which stands for the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers, is a professional association dedicated to the advancement of technology. Through 400,000-plus members in 160 countries, the association is a leading authority on a wide variety of areas ranging from aerospace systems, computers and telecommunications to biomedical engineering, electric power and consumer electronics.