Thiele Laboratory

Welcome to Dr. Thiele's Lab

The purpose of our research laboratory is to develop and test novel biomedical technology. This technology ultimately helps us take better care of both patients undergoing surgery and anesthesia, as well as those who are critically ill. Specific areas of interest for our group include the following:

Mitochondrial Near Infrared Spectroscopy

Our laboratory built and validated Mitochondrial Near Infrared Spectroscopy (NIRS) technology that is capable of measuring the oxidation state of cytochrome aa 3 (CYT OX ), the terminal component of the electron transport chain, in addition to tissue hemoglobin oxygenation (StO 2 ). Unlike StO 2 , which does not interrogate tissue directly, CYT OX measures whether or not tissues are adequately oxygenated, and correspondingly whether the electron transport chain functions as it should. Our interest now is to make this technology both smaller and more affordable, to the point that the hardware could be realistically utilized in an operating room or in an ICU environment.

Physiologic Waveform Analysis

We spent years analyzing photoplethysmographic, systemic arterial, central venous pressure, and pulmonary artery pressure waveforms. These efforts improve upon the dynamic measures of fluid responsiveness (e.g. pulse pressure variation), which are currently utilized by clinicians. Our current work focuses on the interaction between various waveforms, including central venous pressure and how these interactions can offer predictive value.

Wearables and Exercise Preconditioning

We study the amount of physical activity performed by pre-surgical patients and the role that this activity plays in complications after surgery. In our laboratory, we also expose animals to three weeks of treadmill training prior to undergoing surgery, in order to better understand the clinical impact of exercise training, as well as understand the underlying biological mechanism. We collaborate with our surgical and engineering school colleagues on a randomized pilot study for patients undergoing cancer surgery on a smart-phone based, heart-rate guided pre-surgical training program.

Thermography and Infrared Videography

Both cardiac pulsatility and airflow through the oropharynx can be detected using camera equipment with sensitivity in the infrared range of the electromagnetic spectrum. We are interested in using this equipment to develop technology to measure vital signs (respiratory rate, heart rate, and oxygen saturation) from camera systems that require no patient contact.

About Dr. Thiele's Lab