Jennifer Barton

Current Position Title: 
Alternate Position: 
Interim Director of the BIO5 Institute
External Website:

Short Bio

Barton develops miniature endoscopes that combine two novel imaging techniques: optical coherence tomography and fluorescence spectroscopy. She also evaluates the suitability of these optical techniques for detecting early cancer development in patients and preclinical models.

Her research into light-tissue interaction and dynamic optical properties of blood laid the groundwork for a novel therapeutic laser to treat cutaneous vascular disorders. She has published more than 60 peer-reviewed journal papers in these research areas.

Barton is interim director of the BIO5 Institute, a collaborative research institute dedicated to solving complex biology-based problems affecting humanity. She previously served as inaugural head of the College of Engineering biomedical engineering program, chair of the UA biomedical engineering graduate interdisciplinary program and UA associate vice president for research.

She is a fellow and leader of SPIE -- the International Optics Society, a fellow of the American Institute for Medical and Biological Engineering, and a fellow of the American Society for Laser Medicine and Surgery.

Educational Background

1988    B.S., Electrical Engineering, The University of Texas at Austin

1993    M.S., Electrical Engineering, The University of California, Irvine

1998    Ph.D., Biomedical Engineering, The University of Texas at Austin

Selected publications

1.    Barton JK, Pfefer TJ, Welch AJ, Smithies DJ, Nelson JS, van Gemert MJC:  Optical Monte Carlo modeling of a true port wine stain anatomy.  Optics Express 2, 391, 1998. No PMCID

2.    Barton JK, Rollins A, Yazdanfar S, Pfefer TJ, Westphal V, Izatt JA:  Photothermal coagulation of blood vessels: a comparison of high-speed optical coherence tomography and numerical modeling.  Physics in Medicine and Biology, 46:1665-1678, 2001. No PMCID

3.    Barton JK, Frangineas G, Pummer H, Black JF:  Cooperative phenomena in two-pulse, two-color laser photocoagulation of cutaneous blood vessels.  Photochemistry and Photobiology, Jun;73(6):642-50, 2001. No PMCID

4.    16. Barton JK, Popok D, Black JF:  Thermal analysis of blood undergoing laser photocoagulation.  IEEE Journal of Selected Topics in Quantum Electronics, 7:936-943, 2001. No PMCID

5.    Black JF and Barton JK, “Chemical and Structural Changes in Blood Undergoing Laser Photocoagulation,” Photochemistry and Photobiology, 80:89-97, 2004. No PMCID

6.    Tumlinson AR, Hariri LP, Utzinger U, Barton JK, “A miniature endoscope for simultaneous OCT-LIF measurement. Applied Optics,” 43:113-121, 2004. No PMCID

7.    Black JF, Wade N, Barton JK, “Mechanistic comparison of blood undergoing laser photocoagulation at 532 and 1,064 nm,” Lasers Surg. Med. 36:155-165, 2005.

8.    Hariri LP, Tumlinson AR, Wade NH, Besselsen D, Utzinger U, Gerner E, Barton JK, “Endoscopic optical coherence tomography and laser induced fluorescence spectroscopy in a murine colon cancer model,” Lasers in Surgery and Medicine, 38:305-313, 2006. No PMCID

9.    Tumlinson AR, Povazay B, Hariri LP, McNally J, Unterhuber A, Hermann B, Sattmann H, Drexler W, Barton JK, “In vivo ultrahigh-resolution optical coherence tomography of mouse colon with an achromatized endoscope,” Journal of Biomedical Optics, 11:064003, 2006. No PMCID

10.    Hariri LP, Tumlinson AR, Wade NH, Besselsen DG, Utzinger U, Gerner EW, Barton JK, “Ex Vivo Optical Coherence Tomography and Laser-induced Fluorescence Spectroscopy Imaging of Murine Gastrointestinal Tract,” Comparative Medicine, 57 02 04, 2007. No PMCID

11.    Hariri LP, Bonnema GT, Schmidt K, Winkler AM, Korde V, Hatch KD, Davis JR, Brewer MA, Barton JK, “Laparoscopic optical coherence tomography imaging of human ovarian cancer,” Gynecologic Oncology, 114:188-194, 2009. PMC3073086

12.    Winkler AM, Rice PF, Drezek RA, Barton JK, “Quantitative tool for rapid disease mapping using optical coherence tomography images of azoxymethane treated mouse colon,” Journal of Biomedical Optics, 15(04), 041512, 2010. PMC2912936

13.    Winkler AM, Rice P, Weichsel J, Watson J, Backer M, Backer J, Barton JK, “In vivo, dual modality OCT/LIF imaging using a novel VEGF receptor targeted NIR fluorescent probe in the AOM-treated mouse model,” Molecular Imaging and Biology, 13(6):1173-1182, 2011. PMC3085637

14.    Watson J, Rice P, Marion S, Brewer M, Davis JR, Rodriguez JJ, Utzinger U, Hoyer PB, Barton JK, “Analysis of Second Harmonic Generation Microscopy in a Mouse Model of Ovarian Carcinoma,” Journal of Biomedical Optics, 17(7):076002, 2012. PMC3389559

15.    Wall RA, Barton JK, “Fluorescence-based surface magnifying chromoendoscopy and optical coherence tomography endoscope, Journal of Biomedical Optics, 17(8):086003, 2012. PMC3411934

Awards and Honors

1996 - 1997    NASA/Texas Space Grant Fellowship
1996 - 1998     A.D. Hutchinson Fellowship, University of Texas Fellowship
1997     SPIE D.J. Lovell Scholarship
1998    Award for Excellence at the Student Interface, UA College of Engineering and Mines
2008    University of Arizona Leading Edge Researcher Award
2011    College of Engineering DaVinci Faculty Fellow
2012    Michael A. Cusanovich Arizona Bioscience Educator of the Year
Fellow, American Institute for Medical and Biological Engineering
Fellow, SPIE, the international optics society
Fellow, American Society for Laser Medicine and Surgery

Industry Experience

1988-1994     McDonnell Douglas Aerospace (now Boeing Corp.), Huntington Beach, CA. Engineer/Scientist Specialist, International Space Station


6,275,726  E.K. Chan, J.K. Barton, A.J. Welch, “Methods of enhanced light transmission through turbid biological media,” August 14, 2001
6,766,187 J.F. Black and J.K. Barton, “Method for detecting coagulation in laser treatment of blood vessels”, July 20, 2004
6,942,663  G. Vargas, J.K. Barton, E.K. Chan, T.E. Milner, A.J. Welch, “Laser treatment of cutaneous vascular lesions,” September 13, 2005
PCT/AT2006/000277 A. Tumlinson, W. Drexler, J.K. Barton, “Optical Coherence Tomography Endoscope Utilizing a Distally Integrated Interferometer”
20,120,307,326 G. Barbastathis, Y. Luo, R.K. Kostuk, J.K. Barton, “System, Method, and Apparatus for Phase Contrast Enhance Multiplexing of Imaging”
13/500,467, G. Barbastathis, Y. Luo, R Kostuk, J. Barton “System, Method and Apparatus for Contrast Enhanced Multiplexing of Images” April 5, 2012

Classes Taught

  • BME 295c: Challenges in Biomedical Engineering
  • BME 517: Measurement and Data Analysis in Biomedical Engineering
  • BME/OPTI: 630 Biophotonics

    Research Website

University of Arizona College of Engineering
Department of Biomedical Engineering 1127 E James E. Rogers Way P.O. Box 210020 Tucson, AZ 85721-0020