About Kevin

Kevin Dean was raised in Northern California and received his B.A. in Chemistry at Willamette University in Oregon, where he was recognized as a 2x ESPN Regional Academic All-American in football.  He completed his Ph.D. in Biochemistry at the University of Colorado Boulder under the guidance of Prof. Amy Palmer and Prof. Ralph Jimenez, where his work focused on spectroscopy, protein engineering, and multiparameter high-throughput microfluidic analysis, and cell sorting. and cell sorting.  Following graduation, he served as the Director of the first campus-wide light microscopy facility and expanded its user base to >100 users from 8 different departments and multiple local biotechnology firms. 

He began his postdoctoral work in Gaudenz Danuser’s lab at UT Southwestern in May of 2014 and was awarded the Ruth L. Kirschstein National Research Service Award from the National Institutes of health in 2016.  His postdoctoral research integrated advanced light-sheet microscopy, computer vision, and biology to understand cytoskeletal dynamics and signal transduction in of breast cancer organoids in physiologically meaningful extracellular matrix environments. Today, Kevin’s lab is focused on developing or replicating transformative instrumentation and collaborating with biologists at UT Southwestern to address pressing biological questions.

Individual melanoma cells in a dense collagen extracellular matrix.

Individual melanoma cells in a dense collagen extracellular matrix.

Postdoctoral Fellow

UT Southwestern Medical Center

2014 - 2018

Development of high-resolution light-sheet microscopy systems for large field-of-view sub-cellular imaging.

3D Cell-Matrix Adhesions and Cytoskeletal Architectures

Traction Force Microscopy and Rho GTPase Signal Dynamics

Label-free second-harmonic imaging of sarcomeres.

Label-free second-harmonic imaging of sarcomeres.


BioFrontiers Advanced Imaging Resource

2013 - 2014

Established first campus-wide high-end imaging facility at the University of Colorado.

Expanded user base to over 100 users from eight different departments, two universities, and two biotechnology firms.

Led a collaborative team in building and development of novel microscopy and super-resolution instrumentation and techniques.

Multiparameter microfluidic cell sorter.

Multiparameter microfluidic cell sorter.

Graduate Research Assistant, University of Colorado

2008 - 2013

Development, implementation, and use, of spectroscopic and microfluidic methods to improve total photon yield in Red Fluorescent Proteins. 

Quantitative evaluation of genetically encoded biosensors.