The CBE has grown over the past couple of years to over 40 researchers with expertise in engineering, physics, immunology, molecular biology and biology working in newly constructed state-of-art-laboratories occupying approximately 14,000 sq ft. Research at the Center ranges from fundamental studies of electric field and plasma effects on biological cells to applied research including medical and commercial applications. Currently, there are many cutting edge research projects being conducted at the CBE such as water decontamination, imaging, wound healing, vaccine development, cardiovascular therapies, gene delivery, membrane physiology, biomechanical properties and tumor treatment. The productivity of the CBE is evident by the more than 100 publications which have been published by researchers in the Center over the past four years. The Center coordinates an International Consortium on Bioelectrics including groups in United States, Japan, Germany and France. I invite you to learn more about us, and please feel free to contact the bioelectrics faculty if you have questions about our research programs.
Dr. Richard Heller
The Frank Reidy Research Center for Bioelectrics (FRRCBE) exemplifies Old Dominion University's leadership role in this new field along with substantial federal agency support. The mission of the Center is to increase scientific knowledge and understanding of the interaction of electromagnetic fields and ionized gases with biological cells and to apply this knowledge to the development of medical diagnostics, therapeutics, and environmental decontamination. The objectives of the Center are to perform leading edge interdisciplinary and multi-institutional research, recruit top faculty and exceptional graduate students, support regional, national and international programs, and to increase external funding and institutional visibility.
Approximately 40 researchers from more than 10 countries work in the 14,000 sq ft center on research topics reaching from bacterial decontamination of food to novel cancer therapies.
- Pulsed power technology for biological/medical applications in the nanosecond and subnanosecond range through to the microsecond, millisecond and second range.
- Design and modeling of pulse delivery systems ranging from needle electrodes over coaxial plane electrodes to antennas.
- Development of applications for ultrashort pulse technology ranging from wound healing to tumor treatment to neuromuscular effects.
- Development of devices and protocols for pulse delivery systems for drugs and genes.
- Platelet gels - nanosecond pulse electric fields to activate platelets
- Gene therapy – delivery of plasmids encoding angiogenic factors to accelerate wound healing
- Use of cold plasma to destroy bacteria
- prevention of wound infections
- decontamination of food
Treatment of Cancer
- Ablation therapy – nanosecond pulse electric fields to destroy tumor cells – work performed in melanoma, squamous cell carcinoma, liver cancer, pancreatic cancer and breast cancer
- Gene therapy – micro-millisecond pulse electric fields to deliver plasmid DNA to stimulate immune system. Phase I clinical trial successfully completed.
- Use of picosecond pulse electric fields to image malignancies
- Coronary artery disease – gene therapy to assist revascularization
- Peripheral vascular disease - gene therapy to assist revascularization
Electroporation -Gene Therapy
Cancer therapy NIH funding
Wound healing NIH and DOD funding
Coronary Artery Disease NIH funding
DNA Vaccines DARPA funding
Nanosecond Pulsed Electric Fields
Cancer therapy NIH funding; license negotiations are underway
Tissue ablation licensed
Neuromuscular effects ONR funding
Wound healing DOD & Internal funding
Medical Imaging AFOSR and Industry funding
Bacterial Decont. of Food Industry funding
Bacterial decontamination of surfaces Internal Funding