Minh Lam, Ph.D., joined the Department of Dermatology in 2008 after extensive training in both photodynamic therapy (PDT)-induced apoptosis and confocal microscopy at Case Western Reserve University (CWRU). Currently, besides overseeing a Photobiology/Photomedicine laboratory, Dr. Lam also serves as the primary consultant for live-cell confocal imaging in the Skin Diseases Research Center’s (P30) Morphology Core within the Department of Dermatology. The department maintains a state-of-the-art UltraVIEWVox spinning disc confocal system for both fixed specimen and live-cell imaging.
Dr. Lam has also been serving as a consultant for investigators who perform fluorescence and confocal microscopy in their basic and translational research within (Departments of Biochemistry, Pathology, Ophthalmology and Pharmacology) and outside of CWRU (The Louis Stokes Cleveland VA medical center and Cleveland Clinic Foundation) for over a decade. Scientifically, one of Dr. Lam’s interests is to investigate the fundamental mechanism of PDT using a second generation photosensitizer, the silicon phthalocyanine Pc 4, both in vitro and in vivo. With his associate, Dr. Elma D. Baron - Professor of Dermatology, Dr. Lam is exploring ideas that will lead to improvements in Pc 4-PDT, specifically facilitating its clinical development in treating cutaneous T cell lymphoma as well as other skin-related non-malignant diseases, including psoriasis. Recently, Dr. Lam has also been investigating the mechanism of action in Pc 4-PDT-induced apoptosis in the pathogenic yeast-like fungi, such as Trichophyton rubrum and Candida albicans in collaboration with Dr. Mahmoud Ghannoum, an expert in the area of fungal pathogenesis with special focus on adhesion and biofilm formation. Dr. Lam’s other basic science interests in the laboratory include the Bcl-2 family proteins and the role(s) of calcium plays in apoptosis. Techniques that Dr. Lam frequently employs in his research include: Immunocytochemistry, qRT-PCR, Western blot, mammalian cell culture, molecular cloning, live-cell wide-field and confocal microscopy, FRET, FRAP and multiphoton microscopy.