UMD Bioengineers, Modulight Team Up to Launch Drug Photosafety Project

The Huang Laboratory in the University of Maryland Fischell Department of Bioengineering (BIOE) has partnered with Modulight Corp. to establish new standardized guidelines for drug photosafety testing. The three-year project focuses on high-throughput screening of phototoxicity and drug-dye interactions.

The benefits of combining fluorescent dyes and drugs to improve health care have become apparent over the past decades. However, there is little knowledge regarding the drug-dye interactions and phototoxicity at doses and exposure levels used for fluorescence imaging and therapy, as well as best practices for safety testing guidelines of products incorporating these agents.” This collaboration fills a major gap by high-throughput screening (HTS) of the possible causes of drug-dye interactions of already approved – as well as clinically emerging – cancer drugs and imaging dyes.

The joint project will combine the expertise of each party of their respective fields. BIOE assistant professor Huang Chiao (Joe) Huang and members of his Lab will conduct HTS research to evaluate the performance of existing regulatory guidelines and implement new testing protocols. Modulight’s automatic system for illuminating well plates (ML8500) will be used and further optimized to serve as a platform for the standardized drug phototoxicity screening. ML8500 will also support big data acquisition, analysis, and sharing in Modulight Cloud ecosystem.

“Drug-dye interactions are a crucial factor in the processes of combination product discovery and development,” Huang said. “This HTS research collaboration between my lab and Modulight is the first attempt to identify this potential as early as possible and reduce the costs of combination product development. We're very grateful for Modulight’s generous support.” 

For more information about this project and the program, contact

About Modulight

Modulight Corporation is a biomedical laser company that designs and manufactures products for oncology, ophthalmology and genetics. The company also provides solutions for selected high value-add applications including quantum computing and digital press. The company’s products include medical devices, subsystems, software, cloud services and specialized semiconductors. Modulight’s products are used worldwide by many Fortune 500 companies, pharmaceutical companies, and well-known cancer centers and universities. Modulight was founded in 2000 and is headquartered in Tampere, Finland.


Published January 9, 2023