Harry Whelan, MD
Investigator, Children's Research Institute; professor, Pediatric Neurology; director, Hyperbaric Medicine, Medical College of Wisconsin.
Near-infrared light (LED), wound healing, brain tumors, neurofibromatosis, photobiomodulation, traumatic brain injury, mucositis, neurodegenerative disease, diabetic macular edema.
Medical degree, University of Wisconsin, Madison, 1979; residency, University of Florida, Gainesville, 1981; fellowship, Pediatric Neurology, University of Minnesota, Minneapolis, 1984.
Board certified in Neurology with special qualification in Child Neurology; board certified in Undersea & Hyperbaric Medicine.
Inducted into NASA Space Technology Hall of Fame, 2000; Bleser Foundation Endowed Professorship, 2001; United States Navy - Direct Presidential Commission/Promotion to Captain 2002; National Defense University Distinguished Research Professorship, 2004; Bleser Foundation Endowment increased to Endowed Chair, 2008; elected to "Best Doctors in America" 2009-2010.
Harry Whelan, MD, Bleser Family Chair in Neurology, has been inducted into the NASA Space Technology Hall of Fame for his research into the use of near-infrared LEDs for would healing and the treatment of brain tumors. In a multiyear investigation approved by the Food and Drug Administration, Dr. Whelan found that diabetic skin ulcers and other wounds in mice healed much faster when exposed to the special LEDs in the lab. In a separate protocol, Dr. Whelan is studying the use of LEDs to promote healing of acute mouth ulcers resulting from chemotherapy and radiation used to treat cancer in children.
Dr. Whelan is the principal investigator on a grant from the National Institutes of Health studying near-infrared light therapy for neurodegenerative diseases, such as Parkinson's and diseases of the visual system. He also is conducting a pilot study supported in part by the Clinical Translational Science Institute of near-infrared light therapy for diabetic macular edema, a form of diabetic eye disease. Dr. Whelan presented this translational bench-to-bedside research to the United States Congress at the NASA Spin-off Day on Capitol as an example of how space reseach is helping patients.
- Schmidt MH, Meyer GA, Reichert KW, Cheng J, Krouwer HG, Ozker K, Whelan HT. Evaluation of Photodynamic Therapy Near Functional Brain Tissue in Patients with Recurrent Brain Tumors. Journal of NeuroOncology. 2004; 67-201-204. PMID: 15072468.
- Wong-Riley MMT, Eells JT, Whelan HT. Photobiomodulation Directly Benefits Primary Neurons Functionally Inactivated by Toxins: Role of Cytochrome c oxidase. Journal of Biological Chemistry. 2005; 280:4761-4771. PMID: 15557336.
- Whelan HT, Cook JD, Amlie-Lefond C, Hovinga CA, Chan AF, Ichord RN, deVeber GA, Thall PF. Practical Model-based Dose-finding in Early Phase Clinical Trials: Optimizing tPA Dose for Treatment of Ischemic Stroke in Children. Stroke. 2008; 39:2627-2636. PMID: 18617665.
- Ying R, Liang HL, Whelan HT, Eells JT, Wong-Riley MT. Pretreatment with Near-infrared Light Via Light-emitting Diode Provides added Benefit Against Rotenone- and MPP+- Induced Neurotoxicity. Brain Research. 2008; 1243:167-173. PMID: 18848925.
- Hymer WC, Welsch J, Buchmann E, Risius M, Whelan HT. Modulation of Rat Pituitary Growth Hormone by 670 nm Light. Growth Hormone & IGF Research. 2009; 19:274-279. PMID: 19091612.
- Whelan HT, Srivatsal S. The Proverbial Light at the end of the Tunnel in Brain Tumor Treatment. SPIE. 2009.
- DARPA Contract. Long-Wavelength Low-Intensity Photon Therapy for Traumatic Brain Injuries (TBI). The goal is to assess the therapeutic effect of NIR light on the development of neurobehavioral changes in TBI and to characterize the cellular, mitochondrial, and proteonomic changes that occur in TBI following NIR light treatment, principal investigator, 2009-2010.
- NASA. Light Emitting Diode Therapy for Oral Mucositis. The goal is to determine the method(s) of action of NIR-LED light therapy in models of oral mucositis and to improve on the already established therapy, principal investigator, 2005-2010.
- US Navy Experimental Diving Unit. Electrophsiological Effects of Underwater Voltage Gradient Defense System. The goal is to study the electrophysiological effects on divers of an underwater voltage gradient defense system, principal investigator, 2006-2010.
- Clinical and Translational Science Institute. Near-infrared Light (NIR) Therapy for Diabetic Macular Edema, a pilot study, 2007-2010.
- Clinical and Translational Science Institute. Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy for Stroke, 2007-2010.
Children's Corporate Center
P.O. Box 1997
Milwaukee, WI 53201-1997
Phone: (414) 266-7544
Fax: (414) 266-3466
Investigator in the areas of: