Ph.D. Columbia University.
Dr. Kopelman's group includes students of analytical chemistry, physical chemistry, chemical biology, materials, applied physics, all interested in nanosystems and nanoexplorer devices. The problems range from the theoretical, such as stochastic formalisms and supercomputer simulations related to the patterns of reaction fronts in capillaries, to the applied, such as the development of biochemical nano-sensors, energy transducer supermolecules (artificial photosynthetic antenna), and in-vivo chemical measurements in brain cells, in collaboration with researchers from Neurotoxicology and the Medical School. The most recent work involves novel molecular nano-explorer devices for the early detection and therapy of cancer.
His lab has produced the world's smallest light sources and the smallest and fastest chemical sensors. This enables optical, spectral and chemical imaging on a nanometer scale. Novel fiber-optic and nano-sphere sensors (for pH, calcium, zinc, potassium, sodium, chloride, nitrite, nitric oxide, glucose and oxygen) reduce the sample volume and detection limit a billion-fold, and simultaneously the response time by a factor of a thousand. These sensors have been used to monitor biological processes, e.g., organogenesis in live rat-embryos, as well as pathogenic processes due to chemical pollution or poisons. Investigations are also performed on the primary chemical processes inside single neuron and cancer cells. Their recent molecularly targeted in-vivo nano-devices detect (with MRI) and kill (photo-dynamically) tumor cells.
The group has successfully produced some of the smallest non-trivial molecular architectures with directed energy transport (excitonics). An example is the dendrimer "nanostar" molecule with 39 phenyl-acetylene repeat units and a perylenic pendant. This is a new approach to molecular electronics and molecular optics, with applications to photosynthesis, biochemical nano-sensors, and nanotechnology. They have also made integrated organic light-source/sensor mini-arrays.
His research on reaction nano-fronts has established important links between fractal and heterogeneous reaction kinetics. Experiments include reactions on enzymatic and industrial catalysts, micro-capillaries and porous membranes and materials. These new insights also enable them to study the local morphology in systems such as membranes, polymeric blends, thin crystalline films and catalytic surface islands, as well as intracellular biochemical reactions. Computer simulations and stochastic theories accompany the experimental work.
Effect of a Slit-Shaped Trap on Depletion Kinetics Within a Microchannel, S.H. Park, H. Peng, R. Kopelman, P. Argyrakis and H. Taitelbaum, Phys. Rev. E 73 (2006).
Cu+ and Cu2+ Sensitive PEBBLE Fluorescent Nanosensors Using Ds Red as the Recognition Element, J. P. Sumner, N. Westerberg, A.K. Stoddard, C.A. Fierke and R. Kopelman , Sensors and Actuators B 113, 760-767 (2005).
Multifunctional Nanoparticle Platforms for In Vivo MRI Enhancement and Photodynamic Therapy of a Rat Brain Cancer, R. Kopelman, M. Philbert, Y.-E.L. Koo, B.A. Moffat, G.R. Reddy, P. McConville, D.E.Hall, T.L. Chenevert, M.S. Bhojani, S.M. Buck, A. Rehemtulla and B.D. Ross, J. of Magnetism and Magnetic Materials 293, 404-410 (2005).
Real-time Measurements of Dissolved Oxygen Inside Live Cells by Ormosil (Organically Modified Silicate) Fluorescent PEBBLE Nanosensors, Y.-E. Koo, Y, Cao, R. Kopelman, S.M. Koo, M. Brasuel and M.A. Philbert, Analyt. Chem. 76, 2498-2505 (2004).
Metal Capped Brownian Modulated Optical Nanoprobes (MOONs): From Aqueous to Biological Microenvironments, C.J. Behrend, J.N. Anker, B. H. McNaughton, M. Brasuel, M.A. Philbert, and R. Kopelman, Gerald Small Festschrift, Editors: R.M. Hochstrasser, S. Mukamel and J. Norris, J. Phys. Chem 108, 10408-10414 (2004).