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Peter So

Contact Info

room NE47-279

Massachusetts Institute of Technology

77 Massachusetts Avenue

Cambridge, Masachusetts 02139


  • 1986


  • 1992



Research Interests

  • Optics
  • Microscopy
  • Spectroscopy
  • Bioengineering
  • Biophysics

Honors + Awards

  • 1999-2002    Ester and Harold E. Edgerton Chair, MIT
  • 2003    3M Innovation Award
  • 2003    Ruth and Joel Spira Award for Distinguished Teaching
  • 2004    Frank E. Perkins Award for Excellence in Graduate Advising, MIT
  • 2006-2010    Bio-Area Head, Mechanical Engineering Department, MIT
  • 2008-Present    Computation System Biology Program, Singapore-MIT Alliance 2, Chair
  • 2010-2012    BIOSYM, Singapore-MIT Alliance for Science and Technology Center, Associate Chair
  • 2010-2012    Singapore Research Professor of Bioinstrumentation and Bioimaging
  • 2010-2013    Biophysical Society, Council Member

Related Experience

  • 1992-1996     Postdoctoral Associate, Laboratory for Fluorescence Dynamics, UIUC
  • 1996-2000    Assistant Professor, Department of Mechanical Engineering, MIT.
  • 2000-2005    Associate Professor, Department of Mechanical Engineering and Division of Biological     Engineering, MIT
  • 2000-Present    Associate Director, Whitehead-MIT Bioimaging Center
  • 2005-Present     Professor, Department of Mechanical and Biological Engineering, MIT
  • 2009-2010     Chief Executive Officer, FemtoFab, Inc.
  • 2010-Present    Chief Technology Consultant, FemtoFab, Inc.
  • 2011-Present        Director, Laser Medical Research Center, a NIH NIBIB Research Resource.


  • SPIE- International Society for Optics and Photonics

Professional Service

  • a. Review Panel Member:
  • 1997-1999    NSF Advisory Panel, Major Research Instrumentation Programs
  • 1999-Present    NIH Member, Shared Instrument Program
  • 2008-Present    NIH Standing Member, Microscopic Imaging Study Section
  • b. Editorial Board:
  • 1998    Guest Editor, Optics Express, Special Issue on Microscopy Techniques
  • 2002-Present    Editorial Board Member: Journal of Fluorescence
  • 2008-Present    Editorial Board Member: Journal of Biophysics
  • 2014-Present    Editorial Board Member: Nature Scientific Reports
  • c. Conference/Symposium Chair and Instructor:
  • 1990-Present    SPIE BIOS, “Multiphoton Microscopy in the Biomedical Sciences,” Program co-Chair
  • 2005-Present    Workshop on Advanced FLIM Techniques (St. Ingbert, Germany), Instructor
  • 2008    Gordon Research Conference, “Laser in Medicine and Biology,” Chair
  • 2000-Present       SPIE ECBO, “Optical Microscopy,” Program co-Chair

MIT Service

  • 1996-2000    Assistant Professor, Department of Mechanical Engineering, MIT.
  • 2000-2005    Associate Professor, Department of Mechanical Engineering and Division of Biological     Engineering, MIT
  • 2000-Present    Associate Director, Whitehead-MIT Bioimaging Center
  • 2005-Present     Professor, Department of Mechanical and Biological Engineering, MIT


  • 2.671
  • 20.309
  • 2.715


  • 1.    Lee, W. C., Huang, H., Feng, G., Sanes, J. R., Brown, E. N., So, P. T. C., Nedivi, E., “Dynamic remodeling of dendritic arbors in GABAergic interneurons of adult visual cortex,” PLoS Biol., 4, e29 (2006). PMID: 16366735
  • 2.    Kim, K. H., Buehler, C., Bahlmann, K., Ragan, T. Lee, W. C. A., Nedivi, E., Heffer, E.L., Fantini, S., So, P. T. C., “Multifocal multiphoton microscopy based on multianode photomultiplier tubes,” Optics Express, 15, 11658-11678 (2007). PMID: 19547526, PMCID: PMC3060709
  • 3.    Lee, W. A., Chen, J. L., Huang, H., Leslie, J.H., Amitai, Y., So, P. T. C., Nedivi, E., "A Dynamic Zone Defines Interneuron Remodeling in the Adult Neocortex," PNAS, 105, 19968-73 (2008). PMID: 19066223, PMCID: PMC2604980
  • 4.    J. L. Chen, W. C. Lin, J. W. Cha, P. T. So, Y. Kubota and E. Nedivi, "Structural basis for the role of inhibition in facilitating adult brain plasticity," Nat Neurosci 14(5), 587-594 (2011).
  • 5.    Chen, J. L., Villa, K. L., Cha, J. W., So, P. T. C., Kubota, Y., Nedivi, E., “Clustered Dynamics of Inhibitory Synapses and Dendritic Spines in the Adult Neocortex,” Neuron, 74(2) 361-373 (2012). PMID: 21478885, PMCID: PMC3083474
  • 6.    Choi, Y., Hillman, T. R., Choi, W., Lue, N., Dasari, R. R., So, P. T. C., Choi, W., Yaqoob, Z., “Measurement of the Time-Resolved Reflection Matrix for Enhancing Light Energy Delivery into a Scattering Medium,” Phys. Rev. Lett., 111, 24, 243901 (2013). PMID: 24483661, PMCID: PMC4092257
  • 7.    So, P. T. C., Yew, E. Y. S., Rowlands, C. J., “High Throughput Nonlinear Optical Microscopy,” Biophysical Journal, 105, 12, 2641-2654 (2013). PMID: 24359736, PMCID: PMC3882500
  • 8.    Rowlands, C. J., So, P. T. C., “On the correction of errors in some multiple particle tracking experiments,” App. Phys. Lett., 102, 2, 021913 (2013). PMID: 23405035, PMCID: PMC3562246
  • 9.    Rowlands, C. J., Yew, E. Y. S., So, P. T. C., “Parallel super-resolution imaging,” Nat. Method, 10, 8, 709-710 (2013). PMID: 23900251, PMCID: PMC4280568
  • 10.    Yew, E. Y. S., Sheppard, C. J. R., So, P. T. C., “Temporally focused wide-field two-photon microscopy: Paraxial to vectorial,” Opt. Exp., 21, 10, 12951-12963 (2013). PMID: 23736515, PMCID: PMC3686358
  • 11.    Cha,J.W., Singh, V.R., Kim, K.K., Subramanian, J., Peng, Q., Yu, H., Nedivi, E., So, P.T.C., "Reassignment of Scattered Emission Photons in Multifocal Multiphoton Microscopy," Sci. Rep., 4, 5153 (2014). PMID: 24898470, PMCID: PMC4046171
  • 12.    Stanciu, S.G., Xu, S., Peng, Q., Yan, J., Stanciu, G.A., Welsch, R.E., So, P.T.C., Csucs, G., Yu, H., "Experimenting liver fibrosis diagnostic by two photon excitation microscopy and Bag-of-Features image classification," Sci. Rep., 4:4636 (2014). PMID: 24717650, PMCID: PMC3982167
  • 13.    Sukup-Jackson, M. R., Kiraly, O., Kay, J. E., Na, L., Rowland, E. A., Winther, K. E., Chow, D. N., Kimoto, T., Matsuguchi, T., Jonnalagadda, V. S., Maklakova, V. I., Singh, V. R., Wadduwage, D. N., Rajapakse, J., So, P. T. C., Collier, L. S., Engelward, B. P., “Rosa26-GFP Direct Repeat (RaDR-GFP) Mice Reveal Tissue- and Age-Dependence of Homologous Recombination in Mammals in vivo,” PLOS Genetics, 10, 6, e1004299. PMID: 24901438, PMCID: PMC4046920
  • 14.    Sung, Y., Lue, N., Hamza, B., Martel, J., Irimia, D., Dasari, R.R., Choi, W., Yaqoob, Z., So, P.T.C., “Three-Dimensional Holographic Refractive-Index Measurement of Continuously Flowing Cells in a Microfluidic Channel,” Phys. Rev. Applied 1, 014002 (2014). PMID: 25419536, PMCID: PMC4236915
  • 15.    Xu, S., Wang, Y., Tai, D. C., Wang, S., Cheng, C.L., Peng, Q., Yan, J., Chen, Y., Sun, J., Liang, X., Zhu, Y., Rajapakse, J. C., Welsch, R. E., So, P. T., Wee, A., Hou, J., Yu, H., “qFibrosis: A fully-quantitative innovative method incorporating histological features to facilitate accurate fibrosis scoring in animal model and chronic hepatitis B patients,” J. Hepatol, S0168-8278(14)00121-4 (2014). PMID: 24583249, PMCID: PMC4278959