Alex Lippert

Assistant Professor


Office: 303 Fondren Science
Phone: 214-768-2482
Email: alippert[@]
Professional website:

Educational Background

Postdoc, University of California, Berkeley, 2009-2012; Ph.D., University of Pennsylvania, 2008; B.S., Caltech, 2003


  • Assistant Professor, Southern Methodist University, 2012-present
  • Chief Science Officer, Biolum Sciences, LLC, 2016-present

Research Interests

  • Organic
  • Luminescence
  • Bioimaging

The Lippert laboratory designs and synthesizes smart organic molecules that switch their luminescent properties in response to a range of stimuli. The molecules are used to image biological chemistry in living cells using fluorescence microscopy and in living animals using small molecule chemiluminescent imaging. Results in these model organisms can be compared to measurements made in human breath samples using luminescent assays. These photoswitching molecules are also used in a new type of volumetric 3D display developed in our laboratory.

Selected Publications

  1. Cao, J.; An, W.; Reeves, A. G.; Lippert, A. R. "A Chemiluminescent Probe for Cellular Peroxynitrite Using a Self-immolative Oxidative Decarbonylation Reaction." Chem. Sci. 2018, Advance Article.

  2. Ryan, L. S.; Lippert, A. R. "Ultrasensitive Chemiluminescent Detection of Cathepsin B: Insights into the New Frontier of Chemiluminescent Imaging." Angew. Chem. Int. Ed. 2018, 57, 622–624.

  3. Patel, S. K.; Cao, J.; Lippert, A. R. “A Volumetric Three-Dimensional Digital Light Photoactivatable Dye Display.” Nature Commun. 2017, 15239.

  4. Lippert, A. R. "Unlocking the potential of chemiluminescence imaging." ACS Cent. Sci. 2017, 3, 269–271.

  5. Reeves, A. G.; Subbarao, M.; Lippert, A. R. "Imaging Acetaldehyde Formation During Ethanol Metabolism in A549 Cells using a Hydrazinyl Naphthalimide Fluorescent Probe." Anal. Methods 2017, 9, 3418–3421.

  6. Cao, J.; Campbell, J.; Liu, L.; Mason, R. P.; Lippert, A. R.* "In Vivo Chemiluminescent Imaging Agents for Nitroreductase and Tissue Oxygenation." Anal. Chem. 2016, 88, 4995–5002.

  7. Cao, J.; Lopez, R.; Thacker, J. M.; Moon, J. Y.; Jiang, C.; Morris, S. N. S.; Bauer, J. H.; Tao, P.; Mason, R. P.; Lippert, A. R. "Chemiluminescent Probes for Imaging H2S in Living Animals." Chem. Sci. 2015, 6, 1979–1985.

  8. Bruemmer, K. J.; Merrikhihaghi, S.; Lollar, C. T.; Morris, S. N. S.; Bauer, J. H.; Lippert, A. R.* "19F Magnetic Resonance Probes for Detecting Peroxynitrite in Living Cells Using an Oxidative Decarbonylation Reaction." Chem. Commun. 2014, 50, 12311–12314.

  9. Lollar, C. T.; Krenek, K. M.; Bruemmer, K. J.; Lippert, A. R. "Ylide Mediated Carbonyl Homologations for the Preparation of Isatin Derivatives." Org. Biomol. Chem. 2014, 12, 406–409.

  10. Lin, V. A.; Lippert, A. R.; Chang, C. J. "Cell-trappable fluorescent probes for endogenous hydrogen sulfide signaling: Imaging H2O2-dependent H2S production." Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA 2013, 110, 7131-7135. (Highlighted in the April 22 issue of Chemical & Engineering News)


  • NSF CAREER, 2017
  • Sam Taylor Fellowship, 2016
  • NIH R15, 2015
  • Dean's Research Council Grant, 2015