Jim Beach, PhD

Research Associate, Center for Drug Design (CDD)

Jim Beach

Contact Info


Office Phone 612-624-2146

Office Address:
Room 4-270, Nils Hasselmo Hall

Mailing Address:
MMC 204 Mayo
420 Delaware St SE
Minneapolis, MN 55455

Research Associate, Center for Drug Design (CDD)

PhD, University of Virginia (Biomedical engineering), 1983

MS, University of Michigan (Bioengineering), 1976

BS, University of Michigan (Electrical Engineering), 1972


I am a biomedical engineer with experience in academia and industry.My main research area is the development of new methodologies for bio-imaging and medical applications.Currently I am also the Director for Technology Development at CytoViva, Inc, a producer of scientific and hyperspectral imaging systems located in Auburn, Alabama.At the CDD I have been working with Dr. Swati More and Dr. Bob Vince on imaging of the retina in genetic Alzheimer's mice, and with our human study for Alzheimer's disease detection using an eye exam.This work is based on the recent successful outcome of detecting amyloid aggregation in Alzheimer's mice here at the CDD.

Awards & Recognition

  • 1992 - Innovative Research in Physiology and Medicine Award, U. KY. 
  • 1993 - First Award, National Heart Lung and Blood Institute. 
  • 2005 - Space Foundation Hall of Fame Award for Portable Hyperspectral Imaging System

Professional Associations

CytoViva, Inc., Alabama 


Research Summary/Interests

While on faculty at the University of Virginia I designed and used a fluorescence technique to measure membrane potential in the intact microvasculature of the hamster cheek pouch.This was the first report to employ ratiometric fluorescence emission recordings in a study using the potentiometric dye di-8-ANEPPS. This work established electrical signaling as a basis for conducted vasomotor activity in the microcirculation and thus a mechanism for regional blood flow regulation.Success with these experiments enabled me to obtain an NIH First Award through the NHLB Institute in 1993 and start on the academic leg of my career.Later while still at Virginia, I and co-workers developed the dual-wavelength recording technique for measuring blood oxygen saturation in human retinal vessels.The research in humans showed that blood flow autoregulation is impaired in diabetes before the appearance of background retinopathy.My work was supported by a regular research grant through the National Institutes of Health.Shortly after leaving academics I and some former colleagues started a biomedical imaging company which produces the retinal oximeter for clinical research.Later I developed and used a hyperspectral imaging technique to measure the oxygen supply in primates and mice.We were able to show that oxygen concentration in retinal vessels was reduced significantly during high intraocular pressures.Through that work I gained experience in ophthalmic imaging with animals.Most recently in 2016 I worked with Dr. Swati More and Dr. Bob Vince on a mouse spectral imaging system for early detection of amyloidopathy in genetic Alzheimer's mice here at the Center for Drug Design. This got me back to academic research after more than a decade in private industry.The work produced the first report showing that hyperspectral light scatter profiles from the retina can be used as an optical assay for build-up of plaque precursor molecules, enabling an early detection of Alzheimer's disease, and a means for evaluation of potential drug treatments that could prevent the unfortunate symptoms of cognitive decline.


  • Pending:Spectral-Spatial Imaging Device, Vince, More and Beach, March 10, 2016.
  • Pending:Three-Dimensional Image Processing to Locate Nanoparticles in Biological and Non-Biological Media.Beach, Lawrence, Cheatham, Uertz and Dougherty, March 12, 2013.
  • US Patent 7949387: A Method for Evaluating Relative Oxygen Saturation on Body Tissues, Khoobehi and Beach, Issued May 24, 2011.
  • US Patent 6,969,843:Light Standard for Microscopy. Beach and Ross, Issued 11/29/05.
  • US Patent 5,489,771: Beach and Duling, An LED Light Standard for Photo- and Videomicroscopy, Issued 2/6/96.


  • More SS, Beach J, Vince R,Early detection of amyloidopathy in Alzheimer's mice by hyperspectral endoscopy.Accepted for publication in Investigative Ophthalmology and Visual Science, May, 2016.
  • Beach JM, Uertz JL. Eckhardt LG.Hyperspectral interferometry: Sizing micro-scale surface features in the pine bark beetle.online doi: 10.1002/jemt.22550, 2015.
  • Beach J, Pathway to retinal oximetry (review). Trans Vis Sci Tech, 3(5):2, http://dx.doi.org/10.1167/tvst.3.5.2, 2014.
  • Khoobehi B, Firn K, Thompson H, Reinoso M, Beach J. Retinal arterial and venous oxygen saturation is altered in diabetic patients.Invest Ophthalmol Vis Sci.54:7103-6, 2013. doi: 10.1167/iovs.13-12723, 2012.
  • Hardarson SH,Gottfredsdottir MS, Halldorsson GH, Karlsson RA,Benediktsson JA, Eysteinsson T, Beach JM, Harris A, Stefansson E.Glaucoma filtration surgery and retinal oxygen saturation. Invest Ophthamol Vis Sci, 50, 5247-50, 2009.
  • Siddiqi AM, Li H, Faruque F, Williams W, Lai K, Hughson M, Bigler S, Beach J, Johnson W. Use of hyperspectral imaging to distinguish normal, precancerous, and cancerous cells. Cancer Cytopathology. 114:13-21, 2008.
  • H. Narasimha-Iyer, V. Mahadevan, J.M. Beach, and B. Roysam, Improved detection of the central reflex in retinal vessels using a generalized dual-gaussian model and robust hypothesis testing.IEEE Transactions on Information Technology in Biomedicine, 12:406 - 410, 2008.
  • H. Narasimha-Iyer , J.M Beach, B. Khoobehi , B. Roysam.Automatic identification of retinal arteries and veins from dual-wavelength images using structural and functional features. IEEE Trans Biomed Eng. 54:1427-35, 2007.
  • J. Beach, J. Ning, B. Khoobehi.Oxygen saturation in optic nerve head structures by hyperspectral image analysis. Cur Eye Res., 32:161-170, 2007.
  • S.H. Hardarson, A. Harris, R.A. Karlsson, G.H. Halldorsson, L. Kagemann, E. Rechtman, G.M. Zoega, T. Eysteinsson, J.A. Benediktsson, A Thorsteinsson, P.K. Jensen, J.M. Beach, E. Stefansson.Automatic retinal oximetry. Invest Ophthalmol Vis Sci. 47:5011-6, 2006.
  • Beach JM, Ning, JF, Khoobehi, B.Hyperspectral algorithm for mapping tissue oxygen saturation.IEEE Proceedings of the 7th Nordic Signal Processing Symposium, June, 2006, pp 142-45, doi: 10.1109/NORSIG.2006.275213.
  • DiCrispino, K., Yao, H., Hruska, Z., Brabham, K., Lewis, D., Beach, J., Brown, R.L., Cleveland, T.E. Hyperspectral imagery for observing spectral signature change in Aspergillus flavus.Optical sensors and sensing systems for natural resources and food safety and quality. Proc. SPIE 5996, 45–53, 2005.
  • H. Narasimha-Iyer, J.M. Beach, B. Khoobehi, J. Ning, H. Kawano, B. Roysam.Algorithms for automated oximetry along the retinal vascular tree from dual-wavelength fundus images.J Biomed Opt. Vol 10, 054013:1-15. 2005.
  • J.M. Beach, M. Lanoue, K. Brabham, B. Khoobehi. Portable hyperspectral imager for assessment of skin disorders: preliminary measurements , Proc. SPIE, 5686, 111-118, 2005.
  • B. Khoobehi, J.M. Beach, H. Kawano. Hyperspectral imaging for measurement of oxygen saturation in the optic nerve head. Invest Ophthalmol Vis Sci., 45, 1464-75, 2004.
  • J.M. Beach. "Spectral Reflectance Technique for Retinal Blood Oxygen Evaluation in Humans", In Proceedings of the 31st Applied Imagery and Pattern Recognition Workshop, p. 117-23, 2002. http://doi.ieeecomputersociety.org/10.1109/AIPR.2002.1182264.
  • W.Y. Kao, C.E. Davis, Y.I. Kim, J.M. Beach.Fluorescence emission spectral shift measurements of membrane potential in single cells. Biophys. J. 81, 1163-70, 2001.
  • T.H Everett IV, S. Nath, C. Lynch III, J.M. Beach, J.G. Wayne, D.E. Haynes. Role of calcium in acute hyperthermic myocardial injuryJ. Cardiovasc. Electrophysiol. 12, 563-569, 2001.
  • J.M. Beach, K. Schwenzer, S. Srinivas, D Kim, J.S. TiedemanOximetry of retinal vessels by dual-wavelength imaging: calibration and influence of pigmentation.J. Appl. Physiol.86, 748-758, 1999.
  • J.M. Beach, E.D. McGahren, B.R. Duling Capillaries and arterioles are electrically coupled in hamster cheek pouch.Am. J. Physiol.275, H1489-H1496, 1998.
  • E.D. McGahren, J.M. Beach, B.R. Capillaries demonstrate changes in membrane potential in response to pharmacological stimuli. Am. J. Physiol. 274, H60-H65, 1998.
  • J.S. Tiedeman, S.E. Kirk, S. Srinivas, J.M. BeachRetinal oxygen consumption during hyperglycemia in patients with diabetes without retinopathy. Ophthalmology 105, 31-36, 1998.
  • J.M. Beach, E.D. McGahren, J. Xia, B.R. Duling. Ratiometric measurement of endothelial depolarization in arterioles with a potential-sensitive dye. Am. J. Physiol. 270, H2216-H2227, 1996.
  • T.S. Wiedman, R.D. Pates, J.M. Beach, A. Salmon, M.F. Brown. Lipid-protein interactions mediate the photochemical function of rhodopsin. Biochem. 27, 6469-6474, 1988.