Dr. J. Paul Robinson

Areas of Research:

Single cell analysis & instrumentation, fluorescence & atomic spectroscopy, pathogen identification, nano-particle detection (more details at http://www.cyto.purdue.edu/robinsonlab)


Robinson imageLIBS: We have combined Laser Induced Breakdown Spectroscopy (LIBS) with lanthanide-antibody tags to create a unique way to detect pathogens or toxins. We currently designed and built a custom LIBS instrument and we plan to move this to a field deployable hand-held instrument for biological detection. The opportunities extend from bioterrorism, to food pathogens and chemical contaminants. This exciting technology has the opportunity for an innovative approach that incorporates detection, diagnostics and quantification.

Robinson imageELS: We developed a technology for identification of bacterial pathogens using elastic light scatter (ELS). It uses a laser to interrogate a bacterial colony and the scatter forms a unique pattern onto an imaging sensor. We have developed a number of projects from this technology including new approaches to classification, instrumentation and automation.

robinson photoSP: We are very excited about the opportunities in expanding our current PMT/APD photon measurement technologies to single photon (SP) detection. Of particular interest is the unique expansion of spectral analysis in flow cytometry using single photon detectors. We have developed our own unique high-speed, low-noise detector and we are moving toward building a 42 ch array detector which we believe will be transformational in biological imaging and the first such detector robinson 4 ever created. The opportunities for integration into multiple detection technologies are endless! Single photon detectors will one day replace many current photon detectors.

NP: It seems everyone wants to study nano-particles (NP) but few if any technologies can actually achieve measurement of single NPs and let alone characterize them. We have designed a Blu-Ray based technology as a robinson 5 Point Of Care (POC) technology that can analyze particles as small as 20nm. We want to advance this technology by integrating multiple fluorescent detection options, and in the future determine how to sort or separate these particles. There are many applications for this technology – detection of cancer-markers in plasma, monitoring cancer after therapy, monitoring HIV or HBV or potentially any perhaps any viral 

robinson 6 disease or even plastic particles in the environment.

Recruitment Needs:

PhD students (BME and IBSC) wanting to experience multidisciplinary science mixing biology and instrumentation. Must be highly motivated, and ready to travel the world to carry our lab flag!  

 Also interested in recruiting Post Doctoral Researchers.

robinson 7For more information:

robinson 8Please feel free to contact Dr. Robinson directly at

Email: wombat@purdue.edu