R. Michael Van Dam Phd


Assistant Professor
Department of Medical and Molecular Pharmacology

4323 CNSI | 4310 CNSI (lab)
310-206-6507 | 310-794-1731 (lab)


Research Interests

My group is interested in novel microfluidic technologies and automated systems for solving problems in cancer research and molecular imaging. Currently, we are developing a robust automated microfluidic platform for on-demand multi-step chemical synthesis of radiolabeled imaging probes for positron emission tomography (PET). Our aims are to make a wider variety of probes more readily available to scientists and physicians for research and clinical use, and to facilitate the discovery and optimization of new probes. Other research directions include reconfigurable microfluidic chemistry chips that facilitate process optimization, modular plug-and-play microfluidic components that simplify application development, and cell-based molecular imaging platforms for studying cancer biology and developing diagnostics and therapeutics. Because we are developing technology tools that we hope can ultimately be used by others and automated, we emphasize issues such as robustness, reliability, manufacturability, and user interface in our approaches. Our work is very multi-disciplinary in nature and we collaborate extensively with others in the Crump Institute.

Recent Papers


  1. Liu K., Chen Y.C., Tseng H.R., Shen C.K., van Dam R.M., “Microfluidic device for robust generation of two-component liquid-in-air slugs with individually controlled composition,” Microfluid Nanofluidics. 2010 Oct;9(4-5):933-43. Epub 2010 Apr 22.
  2. Sun J., Masterman-Smith M.D., Graham N.A., Jiao J., Mottahedeh J., Laks D.R., Ohashi M., DeJesus J., Kamei K., Lee K.B., Wang H., Yu Z.T., Lu Y.T., Hou S., Li K., Liu M., Zhang N., Wang S., Angenieux B., Panosyan E., Sameuls E.R., Park J., Williams D., Konkankit V., Nathonson D., van Dam R.M., Pehlps M.E., Wu H., Liau L.M., Mischel P.S. lazareff J.A., Kornblum H.I., Yong W.H., Graeber T.G., Tseng H.R., “A microfluidic platform for systems pathology: multiparameter single-cell signaling measurements of clinical brain tumor specimens,” Cancer Res. 2010 Aug 1;70(15):6128-38. Epub 2010 Jul 14.
  3. Cho J.S., Taschereau R., Olma S., Liu K., Chen Y.C., Shen C.K., van Dam R.M., “Cerenkov radiation imaging as a method for quantitative measurements of beta particles in a microfluidic chip,” Phys Med Biol. 2009 Nov 21;54(22):6757-71. Epub 209 Oct 21.
  4. Maltezos G., Garcia E., Hanrahan G., Gomez F.A., Vyawahare S., van Dam R.M., Chen Y., Scherer A., “Design and fabrication of chemically robust three-dimensional microfluidic valves,” Lab on a Chip. 2007;7:1209-11.
  5. van Dam R.M., Elizarov A.M., Ball C.E., Shen C.K-F., Padgett H., Kolb H.C., Rolland J., Diener L., Williams D., Edgecombe B., Jeffires J., Stoianova D., Stephen T., Motamedi F., Heth J.R., “Automated microfluidic-chip-based stand-alone instrument for the synthesis of radiopharmaceuticals on human-dose scales,” Prceedings of NanoTech 2007. 2007 May 20-24:300-03.
  6. Elizarov A.M., van Dam R.M., heath J.R., Kolb H.C., Huang J., Daridon A., “Microfluidic device with ‘coin-shaped reactor’ for radiopharmaceutical synthesis,” Proc 231st ACS Natl Meeting. 2006 Mar 26-30.
  7. Elizarov A.M., Kolb H.C., van Dam R.M., Heath J.R., Padett H.C., Huang J., Daridon A., “Coin-shaped reactor in microfluidic devices used for radiopharmaceutical synthesis,” Proc of Nanotech 2006. 2006 may 7-11:542-45.
  8. Rolland J.P., van Dam R.M., Hagberg E.C., Carter K.R., Quake S.R., DeSimone J.M., “Functional perfluoropolyethers as novel materials for microfluidics and soft lithography,” Polymer Preprints. 2004;45(2):106-07.
  9. Rolland J.P., Zhou Z., Kelly J.Y., Denison G.M., van Dam R.M., Hagberg E.C., Carter K.R., Quake S.R., DeSimone J.M., “Liquid precursors for applications in microfluidics, soft lithography, and fuel cells,” PMSE Preprints. 2004;91:254-55.
  10. Rolland J.P., van Dam R.M., Schorzman D.A., Quake S.R., DeSimone J.M., “Solvent-resistant photocurable liquid fluoropolymers for microfluidic device fabrication,” J Am Chem Soc. 2004;126:2322-23.