Irina Larina Lab

Larina Lab News



January – We are excited to welcome new graduate student Guzel Musina who joined us through the UH Bioengineering program and will be pursuing her Ph.D. degree in Larina lab!

January – Tian and Michaela presented talks at SPIE Photonics West conference in San Francisco.

January – Congrats to Kohei! His first-author publication “Optical coherence tomography for dynamic investigation of mammalian reproductive processes” was featured on the cover of Molecular Reproduction and Development journal! Beautiful cover, Kohei!


September – New funding! Our NIH R01 grant “Multimodal Optical Imaging on the Effect of Maternal Polysubstance Exposure on Fetal Brain Microvessel Function” (MPI: Irina Larina) in collaboration with the University of Houston and TAMU has been funded for five years!

September –Our manuscript “Mouse embryo phenotyping with optical coherence tomography” has been published in Frontiers in Cell and Developmental Biology journal. Congratulations to Dee as a first author!

August – Irina Larina has been awarded a 2022 Michael E. DeBakey Excellence in Research Award!

August – Our collaborative study with Dr. Franco DeMayo lab "Myometrial Progesterone Receptor Determines a Transcription Program for Uterine Remodeling and Contractions During Pregnancy" has been published in PNAS Nexus.

August – Dee Scully has been recognized with $3,000 Dean's Award of Excellence!!!

August – Our video of the beating embryonic heart captured with 4D OCT was selected as Video of the Month and was featured in a story by BCM From The Labs.

July – Congratulations to Dee Scully for receiving the prestigious NIH F32 postdoctoral fellowship, which was awarded to study preimplantation embryo transport, and on her first attempt!

July – Our collaborative publication with Dr. Martin Matzuk lab "The testis-specific E3 ubiquitin ligase RNF133 is required for fecundity in mice" has been published in BMC Biology.

June - Congratulations to Tian for receiving 2nd place poster award at the Texas Forum for Reproductive Sciences 2022! So proud of you, Tian!

May - Our manuscript "Dynamic volumetric imaging and cilia beat mapping in the mouse male reproductive tract with optical coherence tomography" has been published in Biomedical Optics Express. Congratulations to Kohei for his first first-author paper in the lab! Congratulations to Tian for his first paper in graduate school!

May – Congrats to Kohei Umezu for receiving $3,000 Dean's Award of Excellence!

May – We are excited to welcome new graduate student Michaela McCown, Quantitative and Computational Biology program.

March 15 – Our star graduate Andrew Lopez has received the prestigious 2022 Lehmann Outstanding Ph.D. Graduate Student Award and will be delivering a commencement speech on behalf of the graduate school at the commencement ceremony.

March 8 – Congrats to Kohei Umezu for receiving very competitive 2-year postdoctoral fellowship from Japan to study sperm rheotaxis!

Jan. 22 – Tian Xia, Kohei Umezu, Dee Scully, Zheng-Chen Yao and Irina Larina attended SPIE Photonics West conference in San Francisco (finally in person!), where all lab members gave oral presentations, and Irina presented at Hot Topics.

Jan. 18 – We are happy to welcome new graduate student Mohammad Salemizadeh (Sam) Parizi. Sam recently came from Iran and joined Larina lab through University of Houston Bioengineering program.


December – Kohei Umezu and Dee Scully gave platform presentations at the Annual Society for the Study of Reproduction Meeting in St. Louis, Mo..

November – Our postdoctoral alumnus Professor Shang Wang received $1.9M NIH MIRA Grant to develop high-resolution, multi-contrast imaging platform. So proud of you, Shang!

Nov. 3 - Irina Larina was elected a fellow of Optica Society/OSA, a major professional organization in optics and photonics with over 100 yrs history.

July 22 – We have a baby in the lab! Kohei Umezu and his wife Narumi welcomed a baby girl into the world.

July 13 – Our study "In vivo dynamic 3D imaging of oocytes and embryos in the mouse oviduct" has been published in Cell Reports journal and highlighted by multiple news outlets!

June 18 – Congrats to Dee Scully for receiving third place platform presentation award at the Texas Forum for Reproductive Sciences!

April 17 – Dee Scully delivered a great talk at the Pathology and Immunology Trainee Symposium and received first place postdoc presentation award!

March 1 – Tian Xia successfully passed his qualifying exam and is now a Ph.D. candidate!

Feb. 23 – Andrew Lopez successfully defended his Ph.D. dissertation! Congratulations, Dr. Lopez!

Jan. 21 – We are happy to welcome Dr. Deirdre (Dee) Scully all the way from Ireland joining the lab as a postdoc.


Nov. 23 – Welcome our to new postdoc Dr. Kohei Umezu coming from Japan and joining us in the middle of a pandemic.

Sept. 1 – Congrats to Andrew Lopez for his first-author paper in Journal of Cardiovascular Development and Disease "Cardiodynamic Imaging in Mouse Embryos with Optical Coherence Tomography."

July 1 – Congrats to Andrew Lopez for his first-author paper in Journal of Biophotonics "Optogenetic cardiac pacing in cultured mouse embryos under imaging guidance."

June 1 – We welcome new QCB graduate student Tian Xia!

Nov. 15 – Andrew Lopez received Deborah K. Martin Award, the highest honor presented by the Graduate School to one student in recognition of outstanding research accomplishments, personal character and intellectual leadership.


July 15 – All the best to Shang Wang as he sets up his own new research lab at the Stevens Institute of Technology as a tenure-track assistant professor!

May 11 – Andrew Lopez received a travel award to Society for Developmental Biology (SDB) meeting in Boston July 26-30 this year!

May 9 – Our research has been highlighted on the Advanced Science News website: Optical Coherence Microscopy Provides New Insight into Infertility.

May 1 – Congrats to Andrew Lopez for his first-author paper and front cover image selection in Biomedical Optics Express "Second harmonic generation microscopy of early embryonic mouse hearts."

April 12 - Congrats to Andrew Lopez for receiving 1st place Outstanding Platform Presentation Award at the Texas Forum for Reproductive Sciences in College Station, Texas.

Jan. 20 – $2.5M NIH R01 grant “In vivo analysis of mammalian fertilization” has been funded; PI: Irina Larina.

Jan. 9 – Congratulations to Emma Moore for her first-author publication in Journal of Biophotonics “Staging mouse preimplantation development in vivo using optical coherence microscopy".