Category Archives: Research

Suspicious Mammograms: Taking the Guesswork Out of Elastographic Ultrasounds

Jingfeng Jiang uses a graphics processing unit (GPU) to perform advanced processing of raw ultrasound data
Jingfeng Jiang uses a graphics processing unit (GPU) to perform advanced processing of raw ultrasound data, to help radiologists better evaluate suspicious mammograms.

Jingfeng Jiang is the principal investigator on a project that has received a $450,187 research and development grant from the National Institutes of Health, “Elastography-Based Analytics for Benign and Malignant Breast Disease.”

Jingfeng Jiang
Assoc. Professor Jingfeng Jiang, Michigan Tech

Ultrasound elastography is used to pinpoint possible tumors and differentiate malignant, cancerous growths from benign lesions throughout the body, including in the breast. “Cancer tissues are stiff, and aggressively change their surroundings,” says Jiang, an associate professor of biomedical engineering at Michigan Tech.

“Ultrasound elastography uses imaging to measure the stiffness of tissue. Depending on who does the reading, the accuracy can vary from 95 percent to 40 percent,” Jiang says. “Forty percent is very bad—you get 50 percent when you toss a coin. In part, the problem is that ultrasound elastography is a relatively new modality.”

Ultrasound elastography could be an excellent screening tool for women who have suspicious mammograms, but only if the results are properly interpreted. Jiang’s research team, along with Zhengfu Xu, assistant professor of mathematical sciences, will use their graphics processing unit (GPU) to perform advanced processing of raw ultrasound data so physicians can use that information in their clinical workflow. “Mainly, radiologists will use our software together with ultrasound elastography and ultrasound for diagnosis,” says Jiang. “Our goal is to greatly reduce the guesswork.”




Biomedical Research Featured in SME’s Humans of Manufacturing

Humans of ManufacturingResearch by biomedical engineers at Michigan Tech was featured in the article “SME’s Humans of Manufacturing — Developing Hearts,” in Additive Manufacturing. The article focuses on Dr. Martin Bocks’ efforts to solve cardiology problems in small children.

Developing Hearts

Dr. Martin Bocks Seeks to Solve Big Cardiology Problems in Small Children

“Right now, we use stents that are FDA approved for adult indications such as coronary or peripheral vascular disease, or stents for the biliary tract,” said Dr. Martin Bocks, a pediatric cardiology specialist at the Cleveland Ohio’s UH Rainbow Babies & Children’s Hospital.

Working with biomedical engineers from Michigan Tech University and Case Western Reserve University, he has developed a new type of stent made of a special zinc alloy that safely degrades over time and is gradually taken up by the body. It is not permanent like those made of Nitinol, stainless steel, or other bare metals, but shares many of the same properties.

Dr. Bocks explains that the manufacturing process is much the same as any other metal stent, except that the zinc is much harder to work with. “We start with the raw material provided by the team at Michigan Tech, have it cast into rods, and extruded into tubes or a cannulae, which are then laser cut according to our stent design. It’s electro-polished, crimped onto a balloon, and delivered. So far, it looks like an excellent alternative for pediatric patients.”

Read more at SME, Smart Manufacturing Experience, by SME Media.


Researchers Active at World Congress on Adhesion and Related Phenomena

6th World Congress on Adhesion and Related Phenomena

Bruce Lee (Bio Med), Rupak Rajachar (Bio Med) and Ameya Narkar attended the 6th World Congress on Adhesion and Related Phenomena, organized in conjunction with the 41st Annual Meeting of the Adhesion Society in San Diego.

Lee chaired a session entitled “Biomedical Adhesives and Clinical Applications.” Lee also served as the elected vice chair of the Bioadhesion Division within the Adhesion Society and will serve as the chair of the division in the 42nd Annual Meeting of the Adhesion Society in 2019.

Rajachar gave an oral presentation entitled “Optimization of Novel Fibrin-polydopamine Adhesive Hydrogels for Use in Marine Wound Healing.”

Narkar gave an oral presentation entitled “Effect of Ionic Functional Groups on the Oxidation State and Interfacial Binding Property of Catechol-based Adhesive,” a project directed by Lee. Narkar also co-chaired a session entitled “Bioadhesive Chemistry.”


NIH Funding for Zinc Implant Biodegradation

Jeremy Goldman (Bio Med/IMP) is the principal investigator on a project that has received a $217,791 research and development grant from the US Department of Health and Human Services, National Institutes of Health. Jaroslaw Drelich (MSE) is Co-PI on the project, “Exploratory Research to Suppress Intimal Hyperplasia by Controlling Zinc Implant Biodegradation.”

This is a one-year project.

Jeremy Goldman
Jeremy Goldman
Jarek Drelich
Jarek Drelich

Infection Prevention Design by Megan Frost in Manufacturing Trials

Megan Frost
Megan Frost

Home Health Care News published an article about FM Wound Care, a start-up company that is awaiting FDA approval to market a product designed to prevent infection, based on technology developed by Megan Frost (Bio Med).

Wound Care Startup Could Reduce Home Health Time

A biomedical engineer and a health care entrepreneur have teamed up to improve wound care with a product designed to prevent infection and reduce the need for some post-acute care, including home health.

FM Wound Care, LLC, based in Trenary, Michigan, is awaiting U.S. Food and Drug Administration approval on a nitric-oxide-infused, self-sterilizing wound dressing designed to kill bacteria following surgery. The post-op bandage could potentially reduce the need for some care performed by home health care providers, and lower overall wound care costs.

Megan C. Frost, PhD, and entrepreneur Jeff Millin believe their product—the Sentry Wound Dressing—prevents infections by slowly releasing nitric oxide (N.O.) over the course of seven days, allowing patients to wear the same wound dressing for a week.

Read more at Home Health Care News, by Jack Silverstein.


C2E2 Award for Jingfeng Jiang

Jingfeng Jiang
Jingfeng Jiang

Vice President for Research David Reed has awarded the following Century II Campaign Endowed Equipment Fund (C2E2) awards at the recommendation of the C2E2 Committee.

  • Mary Raber (Pavlis Honors College) – MakerSpace: Facilitating the Development of a Maker Culture at Michigan Tech
  • Jingfeng Jiang (Biomedical Engineering) – Building Mechanical Testing Infrastructure Toward Enhancement of Human Healthcare Research and Education on Campus

Reed thanks the review committee members for their participation in this internal award process. For additional information on the C2E2 opportunity, visit C2E2.

By Vice President for Research.


New Biomedical Engineering Faculty Sangyoon Han Invited to Talk

Sangyoon Han
Sangyoon Han

Biomedical Engineering Assistant Professor Sangyoon Han has been invited to give a discussion at the Chicago Cytoskeleton Symposium at Northernwestern University on October 20th, 2017.

His talk is entitled “Early competition of actin and vinculin for talin-binding dictates NA’s maturation and force transmission.”

The Chicago Cytoskeleton is a forum for cytoskeletal researchers from the greater Chicago area to meet, hear some great talks, exchange ideas, and socialize.


Award Winning Stent Project Could Save Babies

TranscatheterPosterExpo2017
Team with Transcatheter Poster
Design Expo 2017

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. – Babies with hypoplastic left heart syndrome may soon be able to forego risky surgery due to a device designed by doctors, students, and technicians from West Michigan.

The condition is complex: a portion of the baby’s heart is pumping with only one chamber instead of two.

Dr. Joseph Vettukattil, chief of pediatric cardiology at Spectrum Health, is working with Spectrum Health Innovations and students and staff from Michigan Technological University in Houghton, Mich.

Dr. Brent Mulder, the Senior Director of Spectrum Health Innovations, says the final product could take up to 10 years to complete, but the wait will be worth it.

Read more and watch the video at FOX 17 West Michigan, by Erica Francis.

The undergraduate student team involved in the project include Emma Davis, Kat Farkas, Amanda Gogola, and Ami Kling, Biomedical Engineering. Their advisors were Jeremy Goldman and Smitha Rao, Biomedical Engineering. For Design Expo 2017 at Michigan Tech, they prepared a project “Customizing Transcatheter Nitinol Stents for Treatment of Hypoplastic Left Heart Syndrome in Infants” with abstract:

Hypoplastic left heart syndrome (HLHS) is a congenital heart defect that is mainly characterized by the underdevelopment of the left ventricle. Currently, multiple open heart surgeries are performed to correct this problem. Our team’s goal was to help eliminate the need for the first surgery by designing and testing catheter deployment of a modified nitinol stent with improved patient matching. The idea of deforming the stent with a microsphere to better fit anatomically relevant infant heart geometries was explored, as well as the feasibility of the use of this deformed shape.

The project was sponsored by Spectrum Health Innovations—Helen DeVos Children’s Hospital. It won several awards at the Design Expo:

  1. Pavlis Honors College Innovation Center for Entrepreneurship Innovation Award: First Place
  2. Ann Arbor SPARK Design Expo Image Contest: Second Place
  3. Black & Veatch Building a World of Difference® Student Design Awards: Senior Design Awards (based on poster): Third Place