UTA College of Biomedical Engineering Researchers


Dr. Khosrow Behbehani


Khosrow Behbehani, Ph.D., P.E.
Dr. Khosrow Behbehani received his B.S. in Mechanical Engineering from the Louisiana State University, his M.S. degree in Industrial and Systems Engineering from Georgia Institute of Technology and his Ph.D. from the University of Toledo in Engineering Science with Electrical Engineering focus. He has over 35 years of industrial and academic research experience with a focus on the development of medical devices and processes for pulmonary health care. He is currently a full professor in the Department of Bioengineering (BE) at UT Arlington. Dr. Behbehani has previously served as the BE Chair for over 11 years and as the Dean of the College of Engineering at UT Arlington from 2003 to 2016. He has published over 120 scientific articles and book chapters. He is also an inventor on 9 U.S. patents with an additional one currently pending. Licensing of some of these patents for commercialization and his other engineering innovations has helped the treatment of an estimated more than one million respiratory patients. He is a Charter Fellow of the National Academy of Inventors. He is also a Fellow of American Institute for Medical and Biological Engineering (AIMBE) and a Fellow of the institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE). He is a registered Professional Engineer in Texas and a member of Tau Beta Pi (The Engineering Honor Society), Phi Kappa Phi (the Collegiate Honor Society), Sigma Xi (The Scientific Research Society), ASEE (American Society for Engineering Education), BMES (The Biomedical Engineering Society), and ASME (The American Society of Mechanical Engineers). Dr. Behbehani is currently conducting ground-breaking work on the assessment and treatment of Sleep Apnea.


Dr. Hanli Liu


One of Dr. Hanli Liu’s research focuses is on functional brain imaging to better understand normal and diseased conditions of neurological activities and brain networks. Specifically, her research work includes:

1. Non-invasive neuromodulation with imaging by using near infrared light to improve human cognitions. Recent human studies have documented that transcranial laser stimulation in the near-infrared (NIR) wavelengths non-invasively induces cognitive-enhancing and brain-stimulatory metabolic effects. Also, advances in multi-channel near-infrared spectroscopy (NIRS) have shown the ability to non-invasively image cortical activities associated with prefrontal memory functions. Dr. Liu plans to integrate these two promising NIR techniques (NIR transcranial laser stimulation for cortical stimulation and NIRS for cortical imaging) as treatment of memory impairments and mapping corresponding improvements by the intervention.

2. Multi-modal human brain imaging using multi-channel EEG and NIRS to better understand resting-state human brain functional network and connectivity so as to diagnose and evaluate different types of neurological diseases, as well as to monitor treatment efficacies. Dr. Liu’s research interests include such neurological diseases as posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD), chronic back pain, and mild cognitive impairment (i.e., early stage of Alzheimer’s disease).


Dr. Fenghua Tian


I have over ten years of research experience in biomedical optics with focus on brain imaging and cerebrovascular functions. Currently I have three research directions:
1. Optical neuroimaging for diagnosis and treatment evaluation of brain diseases and disorders. I have a long-time research track to study the human cognitive functions. An ongoing study is to assess cognitive impairments in veterans with posttraumatic stress disorders (PTSD). The preliminary findings have demonstrated significant PTSD-related prefrontal abnormalities during memory process. In the next step, I will introduce transcranial laser stimulation (TLS) to treat the cognitive impairments in these patients. This will be a collaborative project by involving multiple researchers from UTA (Dr. Liu from Bioengineering Department and Dr. Gatchel from Psychology Department), UT Austin and UTSW.
2. Multimodal study of cerebrovascular functions in neonatal/pediatric patients. I have been collaborating with a number of clinicians and neurologists at UTSW to develop multimodal methodologies for monitoring cerebrovascular functions at the bedside, especially in neonatal and pediatric critical care units. The two ongoing studies are to: a) assess the cerebral autoregulation impairments during extracorporeal membrane oxygenation (ECMO) support, and b) investigate both cerebrovascular functions and neurovascular coupling in neonatal hypoxic-ischemic encephalopathy (HIE). Neonatal and pediatric patients due to severe asphyxia, respiratory and/or cardiovascular diseases, and so on often develop significant neural complications following treatments.  A better understanding of the pathophysiological mechanisms of cerebral injury in these populations is essential for developing new effective interventions to improve clinical outcomes. We are exploring multimodal approaches to comprehensively evaluate the cerebral electric, hemodynamic and metabolic activities.

3. Assessment of peripheral hemodynamics and metabolism. I have developed an all-optical approach to quantify blood flow, blood perfusion, metabolic rate of oxygenation, and cytochrome activities in human tissues in vivo. Currently I’m collaborating with Dr. Nelson in Kinesiology Department to explore its potential applications on patients with peripheral vascular diseases.