Kristen Maitland was born and raised on the Monterey Peninsula in California. She received her Bachelor and Master of Science in Electrical Engineering from Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo, with a focus in optics and optical communications. She performed her Master’s thesis research at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory on fabrication of plasmon-resonant metal nanoparticles and biological applications of these nanoparticles as optical labels. Dr. Maitland received her Ph.D. in Biomedical Engineering from The University of Texas at Austin as a research fellow in the NSF Integrative Graduate Education and Research Traineeship (IGERT) Program in cellular and molecular imaging for diagnostics and therapeutics. Her dissertation research, under the supervision of Dr. Rebecca Richards-Kortum, was the design, development, and clinical testing of several fiber optic confocal reflectance microscopes. Imaging probe configurations used single fibers or fiber bundle image guides, miniature glass or plastic objective lenses, and beam scanning at the proximal or distal (MEMS mirror) ends of the fibers. She performed clinical studies at M.D. Anderson Cancer Center on precancers of the cervix and oral cavity. Following her Ph.D., Dr. Maitland returned to Lawrence Livermore as a Staff Scientist, where she constructed a Coherent Anti-Stokes Raman Scattering spectrometer using a single laser as the pump beam and to pump a photonic crystal fiber to produce a broadband Stokes beam. Dr. Maitland joined the Department of Biomedical Engineering at Texas A&M University in 2008.
Dr. Maitland’s current research interests include confocal microscopy along with other optical imaging and spectroscopy techniques for disease detection, diagnosis, and treatment; and endoscope and miniature optics development for improved access for in vivo applications.