Date of Degree


Document Type


Degree Name





Hyungsik Lim

Committee Members

Ying-Chih Chen

Neepa T. Maitra

Luat T. Vuong

Huizhong Xu

Subject Categories

Atomic, Molecular and Optical Physics | Biological and Chemical Physics


Second Harmonic Generation, Microscopy, Retinal Imaging, Microtubules, Nonlinear Optics, Polarization Resolved Second Harmonic Generation


Here we present the utilization of Second Harmonic Generation (SHG) for label-free imaging of microtubules (MTs) in the retinal nerve fiber layer (RNFL). MTs are an important part of axonal cytoskeleton, providing structural support and serving as a railroad in intracellular transport. We demonstrate the application of SHG microscopy to the following studies: 1) Can changes in MT conformation be detected when treated with a stabilizing drug (Taxol); 2) if disruption in MT precedes loss of axons in a mouse model of glaucoma (DBA/2J); and 3) if elevated levels of intraocular pressure affect MT integrity. Our results validate SHG imaging as a promising tool to research the biophysics of MTs and its possible role in neurodegenerative disorders

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