Personal profile

Research interests

The research interests of Dr Lynn Paterson's group fall under the broad theme of biophotonics. We use the force of light to pick up and move microscopic particles (optical manipulation), microfluidics, imaging and nanoparticle sensors and apply these techniques to the life sciences in areas such as biosensing, biodiscovery and the development of biomedical devices.

Dr Paterson's group website can be found here.

We are based in the Institute of Biological Chemistry, Biophysics and Bioengineering at Heriot Watt University in the School of Engineering and Physical Sciences


Lynn Paterson is Associate Professor in the Institute of Biological Chemistry, Biophysics and Bioengineering and joined Heriot-Watt University in July 2007 as an RCUK Academic Fellow.  Lynn has a BSc from Glasgow University and was awarded her PhD from St Andrews University. Lynn applies optics and photonics technologies to the biomedical life sciences. Her research interests are using optical forces to isolate single biological cells, optical tweezers, optical fibre traps, optical tweezer microrheology, microfluidics with integrated optics, nanoparticle sensors and Raman microspectroscopy. 

Roles & Responsibilities

Deputy Director of EPS Postgraduate Research

Year four Physics teaching co-ordinator

Lecturer in Physics department (year 1 Mechanics, year 5 Biophysics)

Physics undergraduate projects co-ordinator



Research Group Contact Details

Dr Lynn Paterson

Room DB1.32

David Brewster Building

School of Engineering and Physical Sciences

Heriot Watt University

Edinburgh EH14 4AS

Email: [email protected]


Expertise related to UN Sustainable Development Goals

In 2015, UN member states agreed to 17 global Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure prosperity for all. This person’s work contributes towards the following SDG(s):

  • SDG 3 - Good Health and Well-being
  • SDG 14 - Life Below Water


Dive into the research topics where Lynn Paterson is active. These topic labels come from the works of this person. Together they form a unique fingerprint.
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Collaborations and top research areas from the last five years

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  • Fully angularly resolved 3D microrheology with optical tweezers

    Matheson, A. B., Mendonca, T., Smith, M. G., Sutcliffe, B., Fernandez, A. J., Paterson, L., Dalgarno, P. A., Wright, A. J. & Tassieri, M., Mar 2024, In: Rheologica Acta. 63, 3, p. 205-217 13 p.

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    Open Access
    24 Downloads (Pure)
  • Metasurface for engineering superimposed Ince-Gaussian beams

    Ahmed, H., Ansari, M. A., Paterson, L., Li, J. & Chen, X., 23 May 2024, In: Advanced Materials. 36, 21, 2312853.

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    Open Access
    2 Citations (Scopus)
    62 Downloads (Pure)
  • Optical tweezers with integrated multiplane microscopy

    Paterson, L., Matheson, A., Wright, A. J., Mendonca, T., Tassieri, M. & Dalgarno, P. A., 27 Apr 2023.

    Research output: Contribution to conferencePaper

  • OptoRheo: Simultaneous in situ micro-mechanical sensing and imaging of live 3D biological systems

    Mendonca, T., Lis-Slimak, K., Matheson, A. B., Smith, M. G., Anane-Adjei, A. B., Ashworth, J. C., Cavanagh, R., Paterson, L., Dalgarno, P. A., Alexander, C., Tassieri, M., Merry, C. L. R. & Wright, A. J., 28 Apr 2023, In: Communications Biology. 6, 463.

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    Open Access
    3 Citations (Scopus)
    63 Downloads (Pure)
  • Roadmap for optical tweezers

    Volpe, G., Maragò, O. M., Rubinzstein-Dunlop, H., Pesce, G., Stilgoe, A. B., Volpe, G., Tkachenko, G., Truong, V. G., Chormaic, S. N., Kalantarifard, F., Elahi, P., Käll, M., Callegari, A., Marqués, M. I., Neves, A. A. R., Moreira, W. L., Fontes, A., Cesar, C. L., Saija, R., Saidi, A., & 63 othersBeck, P., Eismann, J. S., Banzer, P., Fernandes, T. F. D., Pedaci, F., Bowen, W. P., Vaippully, R., Lokesh, M., Roy, B., Thalhammer-Thurner, G., Ritsch-Marte, M., Pérez García, L., Arzola, A. V., Pérez Castillo, I., Argun, A., Muenker, T. M., Vos, B. E., Betz, T., Cristiani, I., Minzioni, P., Reece, P. J., Wang, F., McGloin, D., Ndukaife, J. C., Quidant, R., Roberts, R. P., Laplane, C., Volz, T., Gordon, R., Hanstorp, D., Marmolejo, J. T., Bruce, G. D., Dholakia, K., Li, T., Brzobohatý, O., Simpson, S. H., Zemánek, P., Ritort, F., Roichman, Y., Bobkova, V., Wittkowski, R., Denz, C., Kumar, G. V. P., Foti, A., Donato, M. G., Gucciardi, P. G., Gardini, L., Bianchi, G., Kashchuk, A. V., Capitanio, M., Paterson, L., Jones, P. H., Berg-Sørensen, K., Barooji, Y. F., Oddershede, L. B., Pouladian, P., Preece, D., Adiels, C. B., De Luca, A. C., Magazzù, A., Ciriza, D. B., Iatì, M. A. & Swartzlander, G. A., 11 Apr 2023, In: Journal of Physics: Photonics. 5, 2, 022501.

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    Open Access
    51 Citations (Scopus)
    62 Downloads (Pure)