Dr Woei Ming Steve Lee

PDF- BioEng (Harvard Med, USA), PhD - Optics (St Andrews Uni, UK), B.Eng- EE (NTU, Singapore)
Group Leader
College of Engineering & Computer Science
T: +61261256058

Areas of expertise

  • Biological Physics 029901
  • Medical Physics 029903
  • Fluidisation And Fluid Mechanics 091504
  • Optical Physics 0205
  • Biomedical Instrumentation 090303
  • Biomedical Engineering 0903
  • Photonics, Optoelectronics And Optical Communications 020504
  • Medical Biotechnology Diagnostics (Incl. Biosensors) 100402

Research interests

My research direction is aimed at the development of high dimensional optical bioimaging platforms capable of elucidate biological dynamics under fluidic flow.  A major hurdle in expanding optical microscopy imaging techniques in biological relevant models under fluidic forces is the complex light-matter interaction within the microenvironment that cells and molecules are exposed to. In order to assess biological dynamics at cellular and sub-cellular level, my laboratory adopts a multi-pronged approach which is to develop a series of quantitative volumetric imaging techniques suitable for in vitro (biomicrofluidics) and in vivo (living animals) studies. The 4D (volumetric, time) information under flow critically reflects the functional aspects of biological cells under pathological conditions. For example, we developed quantitative optical microscopes tools (holographic, multiphoton, lightsheet, oblique scanning, TIRF, computational) that measures the elevated fluid shear, platelets activate and adhere to sites of vascular injury which can results in arterial thrombosis, responsible for major clinical sequelae such as heart attack and ischaemic stroke.


Steve Lee completed his undergraduate training in Electronics Engineering at the Nanyang Technological University (Singapore) and a PhD in Optics at Optical Trapping Group at the University of St Andrews (UK) . Prior to his PhD studies, Dr Lee has worked as an optical engineer/senior technical consultant for 3 years that focus on developing commerical laser scanning instruments (Einst Tech Pte Ltd). During his PhD with Kishan Dholakia and Ewan Wright , he developed novel optical manipulation technologies. He performed the first conclusive nonlinear light measurements on artifical kerr medium and built a multimodality bioworkstation. In 2010, he left the UK to pursue a 2-year postdoctoral training at Wellman Photomedicine/Harvard Medical School (USA) with Seok-Hyun Andy Yun, where he developed adaptive intravital endomicroscopy for live small animal imaging. That is followed by a short stint as a Vice Chancellor Fellow at UNSW on nanowire optical manipulation. In mid-2013, he started his own research group (Optical Biofluidics Imaging Group-oBIG) at ANU to develop novel optical techniques and instruments to harness light for application in biomedicine and nanotechnology, where he won the 2014 ANSTO Eureka Prize for developing low cost elastomer optics. In 2014, he joins ARC Centre of Excellence for Advanced Molecular Imaging as an Associated Investigator to develop the next generation of intravital microscopy for in-vivo imaging. In 2015, he receive an ARC Discovery Early Career Research Award (DECRA). In 2016, he joins ARC Centre of Excellence for Nanoscale Biophotonics as an Associated Investigator. In 2021, he is the Director of Technology and a Chief Investigator of ACRF Centre for Intravital Imaging of Niches for Cancer Immune Therapy (InCite)


Researcher's projects

oBIGGoogle Scholar , ORCID

  1. Biomedical Photonics: Engineering Optics for medical application
  2. Biofluidic Imaging: Combine advanced optics/software/optical instrumentation to quantify microscopic biological fluidics events.


Current student projects

Contact me at steve.lee@anu.edu.au for enquires.

Past student projects

Graduate students

2015 -  2019:     Mr Yongxiao Li, PhD Candidate, Postdoctoral Researcher, Rockefeller Uni

2014 -  2018:     Miss Xuefei (Sherry) He, PhD Candidate  Imaging Engineer, HiSilicon

2014 -  2018:     Miss Tahseen Kamal, PhD Candidate Research Associate UNSW

2016 -  2017:    *Miss Wei Zhong, Master Student (Uni Twente, Netherlands)  Research Scientist, Science Sport

2013 -  2016:     Mr Niko Eckerskorn, PhD Candidate (Australian National University)  Analytics Engineer - CoreLogic RP Data

2015 -  2016:    *Mr Wengou Zhu, Visiting PhD candidate(Sun Yat University, China)        Lecturer

2014 – 2015:    *Mr Redmar Vileg, Visiting Master Student (Uni Twente, Netherlands) PhD student, Leiden Uni 

2013 – 2014:     Mr Huang Longyao, Master by Research  (Australian National University)

2013 – 2014:    *Miss Sjoukje Schoustra, Visiting Master Student (Uni Twente, Netherlands)   PhD student, Twente Uni

2013 – 2014 :   *Miss Li Li,Visiting PhD candidate(Sun Yat University, China) Research Engineering Huawei


2018           :    *Ms Hui Wang Undergraduate, Tsinghua University

2017-  2018:     Mr Yonglin Ren

2017-  2017:     Mr Oliver Johnson, University Medal  | ANU-HST-MIT summer scholar

2016 - 2016 :    Ms Emily Campbell  Tillyard prize recipient | ANU-HST-MIT Summer scholar

2016-  2017:     Mr Tienan Xu  ANU-PhD student

2015 - 2016:     Mr Thomas McMenamin  ANU-MPhil student

2015 - 2016:     Mr Avinash Upadhya, University Medal  | ANU-HST-MIT summer scholar ANU-PhD student

2015 - 2016:     Mr Yang Lu  CSIRO-PhD student 

2015 - 2016:     Mr Tao Xu    ANU-MSc student

2014 - 2015:     Mr Misha Petkovic System Engineer, Seeing Machine

2015 - 2016      Miss Yi Du

2015 - 2016      Miss Yujie Zheng   ANU-PhD student

2015 - 2016      Mr Lyle Halliday,  University Medal, IET Medal  System Engineer, S Medical

2014 - 2015      Mr Zachary Shafron,  Honorable mention(undergraduate project) System Engineer, Thales

2013 –2015      Mr Avinash Upadhya, Yao Su Student Research Award ANU-PhD student

2014 2015      Ms Rachel Watkins,YouFab Global Creative Awards, Finalist Teacher (STEM)

2014 2015      Mr David Wright

2014 2015      Mr Jaden Rubstein

2014 –2015      Mr Zi Cen (Kenny) Senior Product Analytics Engineer ResMed

2014 2015      Mr Alan Harrison 

2013 2014      Miss Siti Mohd Shariaf   

* visiting


Projects and Grants

Grants information is drawn from ARIES. To add or update Projects or Grants information please contact your College Research Office.

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Updated:  04 December 2020 / Responsible Officer:  Director (Research Services Division) / Page Contact:  Researchers