Dr. Yu joined the Department of Biomedical Engineering at the University of Kentucky as assistant professor in fall 2007. He was promoted to associate professor in 2012 and professor in 2016. Dr. Yu has established a solid research program focused on the technology development and clinical translation of near-infrared diffuse correlation spectroscopy and tomography technologies for noninvasive and simultaneous measurements/imaging of tissue blood flow, blood oxygenation, and oxygen metabolism. He has invented several optical imaging technologies, which are currently examined in the clinic for diagnosis and therapeutic monitoring of various vascular/cellular diseases. He developed a fast, high-resolution, portable, and noncontact speckle contrast diffuse correlation tomography device for intraoperative imaging of burns, wounds, and reconstructive tissue flaps, with the goal of optimizing individual interventions (US Patent #9861319, 2016-2036). He is the primary inventor in developing a low-cost wearable diffuse speckle contrast flow-oximeter for continuous monitoring of cerebral hemodynamics and metabolism in neonatal and infant brains (US Patent Application #15655988, 2016). He is an innovator in developing a wearable fluorescence imaging device for identifying brain tumor margins during surgery to promote complete tumor resection (International Patent Application: PCT/US2018/41418, 2018).
Dr. Yu’s research has been continually supported by federal agents (e.g., NIH, NSF, DOD) and national foundations (e.g., American Heart Association and Plastic Surgery Foundation). He has published 90+ research papers and 290+ abstracts/preceedings. Some of publications appeared in high impact journals such as Annals of Neurology, PNAS, APL, ATVB, Optics Letters, Neuroimaging, IEEE Transactions on Medical Imaging, Scientific Reports, and Clinical Cancer Research. He is the recipient of DOD Young Investigator Awards (2004), Second Place Winner (twice) of Young Investigators Awards Competition in the Society of Vascular Medicine and Biology (2004 and 2006), National Society of Black Engineers Notable Research Professor (2012), College of Engineering Dean’s Award for Excellence in Research (2015), Center for Clinical and Translational Science Mentor Recognition Award (2015), A Teacher Who Made A Difference (2016), and UK Researchers of the Month (Sep. 2019).