Postdoctoral Research and Teaching Fellow, Georgia Institute of Technology, 2024Ph.D. in Biomedical Engineering, Georgia Institute of Technology, 2020M.Eng. in Biomedical Engineering, Duke University, 2014B.A. Biological Sciences, University of Chicago, 2012

"For our lab, biomedical imaging is a key research focus, but not an isolated interest. We are excited about developing imaging technologies that integrate biology, nanotechnology, and therapy to create unique theranostic platforms."

Kelsey Kubelick, Ph.D.

Kelsey Kubelick leads an interdisciplinary, applications-driven, biomedical imaging research program. Her lab team leverages light, sound, nanoconstruct design, and cellular engineering strategies to develop advanced theranostic imaging techniques, with a particular interest in ultrasound and photoacoustic (PA) technologies. 

PA imaging is a hybrid acoustic and optical modality, in which pulsed laser light irradiation of optical absorbers ultimately produces a sound wave. The unique mechanism of PA signal generation enables deep, optical contrast that complements ultrasound. Together, US/PA imaging conveys cellular, molecular, and functional information with anatomical context in vivo. 

By developing a versatile set of imaging tools, her lab customizes US/PA imaging approaches to provide guidance, diagnostic feedback, and enhance therapies in vivo in a variety of contexts. Examples include guiding regenerative therapies by tracking stem cell location/status and monitoring adoptive T cells to inform strategies to enhance cancer immunotherapies.

In addition, Dr. Kubelick is passionate about biomedical innovation for resource-limited settings. During her graduate and postdoctoral years, she co-founded and led a Capstone program focused on locally-sustainable, medical device development to address health disparities and solve unmet clinical needs in global health.  

Join Us
We are currently recruiting at all levels. Interested candidates are encouraged to reach out to Dr. Kubelick directly at


  • UVA Emerging Leaders in Biomedical Engineering 2022
  • Rising Stars in Engineering in Health 2021
  • BME Outstanding Teaching/Mentorship award, Georgia Tech 2020
  • Emory University Zebrowitz Award for research excellence in neuroscience 2019
  • Research featured in the special session, “Latest Advances in Photoacoustic Technology and Applications,” IEEE International Ultrasonics Symposium 2019
  • Winner of the “Seeing More Matters” competition in ultrasound and photoacoustic imaging, FujiFilm VisualSonics 2018

Research Interests

  • Biomedical and Molecular Imaging
  • Theranostics and Image-Guided Therapies
  • Multi-Functional Nanoconstructs and Cellular Engineering
  • Cancer Immunotherapy
  • Regenerative Medicine

In the News

Selected Publications

  • Jhunjhunwala, A., Kim, J., Kubelick, K.P., and Emelianov, S.Y. (2023). Photoacoustic Tracking of Stem Cell Viability Augmented with Triblock Peptide and Plasmonic Nanoparticles. ACS Nano. 17(18), 17931-17945.
  • Lee, J.*, Kubelick, K.P.*, Choe, A., and Emelianov, S.Y. (2023). Combined Ultrasound and Photoacoustic Thermal Imaging for Improved Temperature Mapping when Tissue Composition is Unknown. Photoacoustics, 100554. *Equal contribution.
  • Kubelick, K.P. and Mehrmohammadi, M. (2022). Particles in Motion: Magneto-motive Imaging and Sensing. Theranostics. 12.4, 1783.
  • Kim, J., Yu, A.M., Kubelick, K. P., and Emelianov, S.Y. (2022). Gold Nanoparticles Conjugated with DNA Aptamer for Photoacoustic Detection of Human Matrix Metalloproteinase-9. Photoacoustics, 25, 100307.
  • Kubelick, K.P. and Emelianov, S.Y. (2020). A Trimodal Ultrasound, Photoacoustic, and Magnetic Resonance Imaging Approach for Longitudinal Postoperative Monitoring of Stem Cells in the Spinal Cord. Ultrasound in Medicine & Biology, 46(12), 3468 – 3474.
  • Kubelick, K.P.,* Snider, E.J.,* Ethier, C.R., and Emelianov, S.Y. (2019). Development of a Stem Cell Tracking Platform for Ophthalmic Applications using Ultrasound and Photoacoustic Imaging. Theranostics, 9(13), 3812 – 3824. *Equal contribution.