Date of Award




First Advisor

Dr. Danielle Kara


Hemozoin crystals are the basis of a new approach for efficient, cost-effective malaria detection. Clinical success of malaria detection with a magneto-optical device (MOD) motivates quantification of the optical interactions forming the basis of the detection mechanism. The MOD is used to measure the intensity of polarized light transmitted through a sample of hemozoin suspended in phosphate-buffered saline, subject to a magnetic field, 𝐡τˆ¬ βƒ—, that can be turned on and off. According to Beer’s law, ratios of transmitted light with different polarization directions and with on and off as a function of hemozoin concentration were related to change in absorption cross section, Ξ” 𝜎, an important property for quantifying optical interactions. Using two methods, Ξ”πœŽ was uniquely determined, producing similar results, supporting the physical and mathematical theory used to understand MOD’s detection mechanism. Successful quantification of Ξ”πœŽ informs our understanding of the magneto-optical properties of hemozoin, which advances malaria detection, and expands potential applications of the MOD.

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Physics Commons