Bucknell BME has Strong Presence at National Meeting

In early October, seventeen students and five faculty traveled to Pittsburgh to represent the Department at the 2009 Biomedical Engineering Society Annual Meeting.  At the meeting, both the students and faculty were very active in running workshops, presenting research and educational papers, and fulfilling leadership responsibilities.  The meeting also provided an opportunity for students and faculty to meet or reconnect with alumni of the department.  

Student Participation
The students present at the meeting were able to attend a wide range of technical presentations, gain exposure to graduate school opportunities, and network with BME-related companies.  Additionally, a number of the students had the opportunity to present their own research at the national level.  Their presentations included: 

•·  Samantha A. Clark (BME '10), A. Hsieh, S. Campbell, and A. McCulloch (Bioengineering, University of California, San Diego) Modeling the Mechanical Stretch Response of the Individual Cardiomyocyte 

•·  Allison I. Hoch (BME '10), Daniel C. Saunders (MechE '10) Emily L. Thiel (BME '07) and Eric A. Kennedy, A Methodology for Eye Impact Testing to Determine the Relationship Between Projectile Energy and Internal Pressure 

•·  Eric J. Orbison (BME '10) and Donna M. Ebenstein, Fabrication and Testing of a Fluid Cell Attachment for a Dynamic Mechanical Analyzer 

•·  Jason Wong (BME '10), Natalie Bindert (MechE '11), Christina Garman (CompSci '11) and Donna M. Ebenstein, A Strain Gauge Force Sensor-Based Method for Material Characterization of Natural Microscale Fibers 

•·  Eileen D. Foley (BME '11) and Joseph V. Tranquillo, Coupling Induced Bursting in a Neuron-Glial System 

•·  Daniel E. Medani (Comp.Sci. '10) and Joseph V. Tranquillo, Simulated Self-Regulation of Neuronal Input Impedance  (**Won 3rd Place in Student Presentation Competition). 

Faculty Participation
The BME faculty were also very active at the meeting presenting their own research and educational work as well as serving in a wide range of professional capacities.  Their efforts included: 

•·  Professor Donna Ebenstein gave an oral presentation on Bucknell BME's novel instruction of cell culturing and biocompatibility.  Her presentation was entitled A Cell-Culture Based Biocompatibility Module for Biomedical Engineers

•·  Professor Joe Tranquillo presented his efforts from two research projects: 1) A Modular Software Suite for the Simulation of Biological Networks, and 2) Burst Switching as a Mechanism for Neural Pathway Self-Regulation

•·  Professor Donna Ebenstein presented results from two of her research projects via an oral presentation entitled Mechanical Properties of Sheep Shoulder Joint Tissues Measured by a Handheld Indenter and a poster entitled Development of Standard Methods for Nanoindentation of Compliant Biomaterials

•·  Professors Joe Tranquillo and Dan Cavanagh ran a workshop where they were invited to introduce faculty from nearly every U.S. BME program to Bucknell's rapid design challenge aspect of senior design.  This workshop was part of the national BME-IDEA Meeting

•·  Professor Joe Tranquillo lead a group of six faculty from across the U.S., including Professor Dan Cavanagh, in coordinating the undergraduate research sessions at the meeting. 

•·  Professor Dan Cavanagh served in his capacity as a member of the executive board of the National Biomedical Engineering Council of Chairs to facilitate a meeting of the group, which represents nearly 90 undergraduate programs in the U.S. 

•·  Professors Donna Ebenstein, Eric Kennedy, and Joe Tranquillo served as chairs of technical sessions.  

Alumni Participation
The meeting also provided a venue for the biomedical engineering students and faculty to interact with six BME alumni who were in attendance at the meeting.  The Bucknell students were able to chat with the alumni about their experiences in graduate school and industry and to gain insight into potential post-graduation opportunities.  In addition to joining the students and faculty for a group dinner, four of these alumni presented their own current, graduate school research at the meeting as shown below: 

•·  Erica Andreozzi ('07), University of California at Davis, Solid Lipid Nanoparticles for Delivering Imaging Agents across In Vitro Models of the Blood Brain Barrier 

•·  Sandy Deitch ('07), Clemson University, Effects of Cell-Cell and Cell-Matrix Interactions on the Mechanical Heterogeneity of Vascular Smooth Muscle Cells 

•·  Andrew Yeatts ('07), University of Maryland, Effect of Media Flow Rate on the Osteogenic Differentiation of Human Mesenchymal Stem Cells in a Novel Bioreactor System 

•·  Sarah Henderson, ('08), University of Pittsburgh, Experimental and Theoretical Evaluation of Viscoelastic Shear Properties of Mandibular Cartilage

Overall, the meeting was a great opportunity for the students to gain valuable exposure to the field of biomedical engineering and for the faculty to present their work at the national level. 

The added opportunity to meet or catch up with BME alumni was enjoyed by both the students and the faculty.  The Department looks forward to another exciting meeting in 2010 in Austin, TX.


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