Junjie Yao
Junjie Yao

Junjie Yao

Associate Professor of Biomedical Engineering


Our mission at PI-Lab is to develop state-of-the-art photoacoustic tomography (PAT) technologies and translate PAT advances into diagnostic and therapeutic applications, especially in functional brain imaging and early cancer theranostics. PAT is the most sensitive modality for imaging rich optical absorption contrast over a wide range of spatial scales at high speed, and is one of the fastest growing biomedical imaging technologies. Using numerous endogenous and exogenous contrasts, PAT can provide high-resolution images at scales covering organelles, cells, tissues, organs, small-animal organisms, up to humans, and can reveal tissue’s anatomical, functional, metabolic, and even histologic properties, with molecular and neuronal specificity.

At PI-Lab, we develop PAT technologies with novel and advanced imaging performance, in terms of spatial resolutions, imaging speed, penetration depth, detection sensitivity, and functionality. We are interested with all aspects of PAT technology innovations, including efficient light illumination, high-sensitivity ultrasonic detection, super-resolution PAT, high-speed imaging acquisition, novel PA genetic contrast, and precise image reconstruction. On top of the technological advancements, we are devoted to serve the broad life science and medical communities with matching PAT systems for various research and clinical needs. With its unique contrast mechanism, high scalability, and inherent functional and molecular imaging capabilities, PAT is well suited for a variety of pre-clinical applications, especially for studying tumor angiogenesis, cancer hypoxia, and brain disorders; it is also a promising tool for clinical applications in procedures such as cancer screening, melanoma staging, and endoscopic examination.


Associate Professor of Biomedical Engineering in the Pratt School of Engineering

2023 Pratt School of Engineering

Associate Professor in Neurology in the School of Medicine

2023 School of Medicine

Affiliate, Duke Global Health Institute in the University Institutes and Centers

2023 University Institutes and Centers

Faculty Network Member of the Duke Institute for Brain Sciences in the University Institutes and Centers

2018 University Institutes and Centers

Member of the Duke Cancer Institute in the School of Medicine

2017 School of Medicine


Ph.D. 2012

2012 Washington University in St. Louis

Publications, Grants & Awards

Offices & Contact

Hudson Hall Annex 261
Durham, NC
Room 1427, Fitzpatrick Ciemas, 101 Science Drive
Durham, NC