‌‌‌‌Head of Division: Professor Huabing Yin

The Division Biomedical Engineering at the University of Glasgow brings together four important research themes in the areas of Advanced Medical Diagnostics, Rehabilitation Engineering and Assistive Technologies, Biomaterials and Tissue engineering and Synthetic Biology.

The Division hosts research grants that support PhD students and postdoctoral researchers in fields as diverse as infectious disease diagnostics for low-resource settings, brain-computer interfaces, stem cell differentiation using nanotechnology, robots as orthotic aids, and the creation of artificial cells. Our research is supported by funding from the ERC, UKRI programme grants, the EU, charities and industry.

Our Division benefits from strong links to industry as well as to the biomedical sciences and clinical medicine. For example, we lead the Scottish Centre for Innovation in Spinal Cord Injuries placed within the Queen Elizabeth University Hospital. Our research groups have spun out companies in medical devices and lead clinical trials of advanced therapy medicinal products.

Our work contributes primarily to the School’s Research Priority Area in Healthcare Technologies, but we also have strong links into Quantum and Nanotechnologies (with the development of new sensors for example), as well as in the Priority Area in Zero Carbon, looking for example to develop new sustainable technologies for tissue engineering and diagnostics.

Events this week

There are currently no events scheduled this week


Upcoming events

Healthcare Seminar: TBC

Group: Computing Technologies for Healthcare
Speaker: Dr. Tanaya Guha, University of Glasgow
Date: 25 January, 2023
Time: 14:00 - 15:00
Location: https://uofglasgow.zoom.us/meeting/register/tZAscuCgrDgvGNEB9piiUZf_mCbyPsEBu4c2

Biography: 

Dr. Tanaya Guha is a Senior Lecturer (Associate Professor) in University of Glasgow and a member of the Glasgow Interactive Systems (GIST) section. Her research focuses on developing machine intelligence capabilities to understand human activities and behaviour combining machine learning, computer vision and signal/speech processing. She received her PhD in Electrical and Computer Engineering from the University of British Columbia (UBC), Vancouver. Among other awards and honours, she is a recipient of Warwick Global Research Priority award, ICME Outstanding Area Chair award and Mensa Canada Woodhams memorial scholarship. She is also a member of ISCA, IEEE, an elected member of IEEE MSA Technical Committee and an Executive Committee member of AAAC. She is actively involved in the Organizing and Program Committees of several conferences. 


Past events

Machine Learning at NHS National Services Scotland (Business Intelligence) (28 September, 2022)

Speaker: Dr Simon Rogers

NHS NSS is a specialist health board, providing services to the other health boards and across the public sector. Within NSS, the Business Intelligence (and more specifically, the Artificial Intelligence Centre of Excellence) provide assistance, expertise, and a technology platform to support projects with an AI component. In this talk, I will introduce NSS BI (including our Seer platform), and discuss some of the work that we are undertaking, including work on the new version of the SPARRA model (predicting admission / re-admission for individuals in Scotland), work on how to safely export trained models from safe-haven environments, and some ongoing work on fairness / inequalities.

Biography:

Dr Simon Rogers is an AI data scientist at NHS National Services Scotland and Honorary Lecturer in Computer Science at University of Glasgow. His research involves the development of Machine Learning and Statistical techniques to help with the analysis of complex datasets. Among his long publication list he has also published a textbook on 'A First Course in Machine Learning', which is an introduction to modern (fairly probabilistic) Machine Learning.

This is a hybrid seminar: Join us at 423 Sir Alwyn Williams Building, School of Computing Science.

Registration is required:  https://uofglasgow.zoom.us/meeting/register/tJUkcOqsqz8vHdboNnP6P-_L3F5na54lHlsx

Diagnostics for Endometriosis (19 August, 2022)

Speaker: Alexandra Dobrea

The talk will introduce our work on the development of a new diagnostic method for Endometriosis. We will introduce a view of the challenging issues currently facing those with the condition. Internationally, endometriosis has been highlighted as one of the most pressing matters in women's health and the psychological and economic damage is only just being uncovered.
 
Developing solutions will require cross-disciplinary approaches and the talk will be used to spark a networking session on potential links and shared interests amongst the audience. 
 
The talk will take place on level 4 of the ARC. 

Biological Application of Brillouin Spectroscopy (11 August, 2022)

Speaker: Dr Silvia Caponi

The promised land of AI for Healthcare and lessons learned wandering the desert (20 July, 2022)

Speaker: Dr. Simone Stumpf

Abstract:

AI is touted as the panacea that will cure all the ills of the current healthcare system. In this talk I will provide an overview of my work in technologies for healthcare, well-being and accessibility that will draw out lessons learned and challenges for designing and developing effective healthcare technologies that use AI.

Biography:

Dr. Simone Stumpf recently joined University of Glasgow, UK, as a Reader in Responsible and Interactive AI. She has a long-standing research focus on user interactions with machine learning systems. Her research includes self-management systems for people living with long-term conditions, developing teachable object recognisers for people who are blind or low vision, and investigating AI fairness. Her work has contributed to shaping the field of Explainable AI (XAI) through the Explanatory Debugging approach for interactive machine learning, providing design principles for enabling better human-computer interaction and investigating the effects of greater transparency. The prime aim of her work is to empower everyone to use AI systems effectively.

Healthcare Seminar: Dr Xianghua Ding & Dr Marwa Mahmoud (22 June, 2022)

Speaker: Dr Xianghua Ding & Dr Marwa Mahmoud

This is a special hybrid event that hosts Dr Xianghua Ding & Dr Marwa Mahmoud that they are going to talk about their research on 'Advance Technology, Empower People: Exploring Social-Technical Approaches for Everyday Health' and 'Vision-focused multimodal behaviour modelling for mental health applications'

In person location: 422-423 Sir Alwyn Williams Building, School of Computing Science, UoG

Online location: https://uofglasgow.zoom.us/meeting/register/tJUucOCrpjovHdLqvVrzDE4XWTHqH9BtT5uP 

 

Title: Vision-focused multimodal behaviour modelling for mental health applications

Abstract:

There is a growing interest from healthcare organisations, academia and industry on automatic prediction, prevention and intervention of mental health issues, but most of the current work depends  on non-visual input, such as wearables and mobile phone data or basic analysis of video focussing on facial expressions analysis only. These models do not capture the full picture and overlook complex non-verbal behaviour analysis, which is the basis of many mental disorder diagnoses. Computer vision techniques have not been fully explored in this domain because of the sensitive nature of the data and limited availability of public datasets for training. Moreover, the high dimensionality of the signals collected from video complicates processing.

In this talk, I will present my work on automatic analysis and detection of body gestures and self-adaptors that are related to psychological distress. I will also discuss multimodal behaviour modelling techniques that I adapted to overcome the challenges of data scarcity and noisy complex signals in mental health datasets. Finally, I will also present some of my recent work on modelling gestures and body expressions in infants shedding light on their relationship with their neurodevelopment assessment.

Biography:

Dr Marwa Mahmoud is a Lecturer in Socially Intelligent Technologies in the School of Computing Science at University of Glasgow, and a Visiting Fellow in the Department of Computer Science and Technology at University of Cambridge, UK. Before joining University of Glasgow, she spent 10 years at University of Cambridge, where she obtained her PhD in 2015, then worked as a postdoc for a year before managing to secure the prestigious King’s College Junior Research Fellowship in 2016, which allowed her to start independent research. Her research interests focus on computer vision for social signal processing and multimodal signal processing, especially within the context of affective computing, behaviour analytics, human behaviour understanding and animal behaviour understanding. She applied her research in the areas of automotive applications, mental healthcare, and animal welfare. She is interested in ‘AI for Social Good’, combining computer vision research with health for human well-being and animal welfare applications. She is an elected Executive Committee (EC) Member of the Association for the Advancement of Affective Computing (AAAC), Network Member of Cambridge Trust & Technology Initiative and a member of Cambridge Neuroscience.

 

Title: Advance Technology, Empower People: Exploring Social-Technical Approaches for Everyday Health

Abstract:

Today, more and more intelligent healthcare technologies that were only available in medical settings are now easily at our disposal for everyday use. However, technical availability does not mean practical usability. There are still quite some challenges for end users, and lay people in particular, to meaningfully engage with intelligent health technologies and health data to put them into effective use in everyday lives. In this talk, I will share my studies on intelligent health technologies for everyday use, including a mobile application based on face reading technologies for health assessment and lifestyle suggestions, and automatic stress sensing technologies for everyday stress management, and highlight several challenges for intelligent health technologies to be integrated into everyday health practices, e.g. due to the lack of health and technical literacy. I will also share some studies on patient-provider communication platforms, and illustrate how they, by simply making resources more transparent and accessible, enable users to engage in learning, and enact agency and strategies for reliable and cost-effective healthcare. Based on work, I will discuss implications, and how they shape my ongoing work to empower people for effective everyday health management.

 

Biography:
Dr. Xianghua (Sharon) Ding is a Senior Lecturer in Healthcare Technologies in the School of Computer Science at the University of Glasgow. Before moving to Glasgow, she was an Associate Professor at Fudan University, Shanghai, China. She received her Ph.D. from University of California, Irvine, USA in 2010. Her research falls in the areas of Human Computer Interaction(HCI), Computer Supported Cooperative Work (CSCW), and Ubiquitous Computing (Ubicomp). She is interested in social-technical approaches to empower people to manage their health in daily lives, with particular interest in intelligent health sensing and collaborative technologies for preventive health, health literacy, and mental wellbeing. Her work has been published at flagship venues in HCI such as CHI, CSCW, and Ubicomp, and has received Best Paper (CSCW2015) and Honorable Mention (CHI2020) awards. She has also been serving leadership roles in these venues, including Editor for CSCW2021-2022, Subcommittee Chair for CHI2021’s Health and CHI2019’s Understanding People, and Associate Chair for CHI and CSCW. She also led the publication on a special issue on human-centered cooperative computing as a lead guest editor for CCF’s Transactions on Pervasive Computing and Interaction.

Healthcare Seminar & AthenaSwan Session: Cognitive Vision in Robotic Surgery (16 March, 2022)

Speaker: Dr. Stamatia Giannarou

This is a special session organised on behalf of the Computing Technologies for Healthcare Theme and the Athena Swan. The session includes:

  • Research talk and Q/A (60 minutes)
  • Discussion on career progression and fellowships (45 minutes) 

Registration is required:  https://uofglasgow.zoom.us/meeting/register/tJwsduqhrDwiHtdMKCADLEHgdNagRGveehZr

Consider subscribing to our emailing list: https://samoa.dcs.gla.ac.uk/events/series.jsp?series=179 

Abstract: With recent advances in medical imaging and surgical robotics, surgical oncology is entering a new era that is set to bring major healthcare and socio-economic benefits. The main goal of surgical oncology is to achieve complete resection of cancerous tissue with minimal iatrogenic injury to surrounding tissue. In practice, this often presents a formidable challenge to surgeons. Surgery on tumours residing within the brain is particularly demanding, and the prognosis for patients afflicted with such tumours remains very poor. Intrinsic brain tumours are highly infiltrative making it difficult to distinguish tumour tissue from surrounding tissue. Moreover, it is imperative to preserve unaffected brain tissue, which is delicate, often eloquent, and has little capacity for regeneration.

The aim of my research is to integrate multimodal intraoperative imaging and navigation technologies into a cognitive robotic platform. In this talk, I will present an intraoperative vision system for surgical navigation and real-time tissue characterisation during robot-assisted neurosurgery to improve both the efficacy and safety of tumour resections. The focus will be on the recovery of 3D morphological structures in the presence of tissue deformation, the efficient robot-assisted tissue scanning with imaging probes and the tissue characterisation for on-line diagnosis support.

 

Biosketch: Stamatia (Matina) Giannarou received the MEng degree in Electrical and Computer Engineering from Democritus University of Thrace, Greece in 2003, the MSc degree in communications and signal processing and the Ph.D. degree in image processing from the department of Electrical and Electronic Engineering, Imperial College London, UK in 2004 and 2008, respectively. Currently she is a Royal Society University Research Fellow and a Lecturer in Surgical Cancer Technology and Imaging at the Hamlyn Centre for Robotic Surgery, Department of Surgery and Cancer, Imperial College London, UK. Her research focuses on enhanced surgical vision for intraoperative navigation in minimally invasive and robot-assisted operations. In 2017, she won “The President’s Award for Outstanding Early Career Researcher” at Imperial College London. She has been selected as a member of the IdeasLab of Imperial College London on the “Frontiers of Imaging” at the World Economic Forum Annual Meeting of the New Champions 2016 in Tianjin, China. She received best paper awards at international conferences and workshops including the IPCAI 2016, AE-CAI-MICCAI 2020, IPCAI 2020, AE-CAI-MICCAI 2021. She has also been invited to present her work at a number of international workshops and symposia. She is a regular reviewer for high impact journals and conferences in the fields of medical robotics, medical imaging and biomedical engineering and the chair of the annual Hamlyn Winter School on Surgical Imaging and Vision.

From Risky to Trustworthy AI in Healthcare (16 February, 2022)

Speaker: Dr. Karim Lekadir

Abstract: Amid hope and hype, artificial intelligence (AI) is widely regarded as one of the most promising and disruptive technologies for future healthcare. The application of medical AI has the potential to increase the productivity and efficiency of clinicians, improve medical diagnosis and treatment, optimise the allocation of human and technical resources, and lead to better health outcomes for patients and citizens. However, there are currently several technical, clinical, ethical and legal risks associated with medical AI that have limited its deployment in the real world. This talk will discuss these risks, including the potential lack of clinical safety, the limited generalisability of the AI solutions across settings, and important ethical issues such as algorithmic bias against under-represented groups. I will also discuss the need for guidelines and best practices to support the design, development and deployment of future AI tools in healthcare that are accurate and robust, but also trustworthy and ethical, to maximise their acceptance and adoption by medical professionals and patients alike. 

Biography:  Dr. Karim Lekadir is a Ramon y Cajal Researcher and Director of the Artificial Intelligence in Medicine Lab at the Universitat de Barcelona (BCN-AIM). He holds a PhD from Imperial College London (UK) and was previously a visiting scholar at Stanford University (USA). His current research focuses on the development of data science and machine learning approaches for the analysis of large-scale biomedical data, including imaging, clinical, lifestyle, and mobile data. The software he developed during his PhD for cardiac functional quantification has been CE marked and commercialised by CMRtools, and is now used in more than 250 clinical centres worldwide. He is the Coordinator of the following Horizon 2020 projects: euCanSHare (2018-2022), developing a big data platform for cardiovascular research; EarlyCause (2019-2023), which investigates multi-morbidity using experimental and data science approaches; and EuCanImage (2020-2024), which is building a federated artificial intelligence environment for cancer imaging. He is also work package leader in the longITools H2020 project  (2019-2024), developing a mobile app for cardio-metabolic risk prediction based on exposome data. In addition, Karim is General Chair for the MICCAI 2024 Conference (Medical Image Computing and Computer-Assited Intervention) which for the first time will take place in Africa – in Marrakesh, Morocco. He is an Associate Editor of IEEE Transactions on Medical Imaging.

Computer Science career in the NHS: The Scientist Training Programme (STP) (25 January, 2022)

Speaker: Andrew Simpson

Computer Science career in the NHS: The Scientist Training Programme (STP)

 

Andrew Simpson will join us on Zoom on the 25th of January at 6:30pm to talk about the Scientist Training Programme in the NHS. The STP is a three year fully NHS funded training programme, leading to an MSc Clinical Science (Clinical Computing) and on successful completion, Statutory Registration with the Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC) as a Clinical Scientist. During training, the student is paid at NHS Band 6 (at a training Annex). The entry requirements are: An undergraduate degree in either Computer Science, Mathematics or Scientific Engineering.

Computer Scientists who are Clinical Scientists can and do: 

  • Develop medical software and technology
  • Use that software/technology clinically on patients (in theatres, on wards, etc.)  (Under Annex A of the Medical Device Regulations) 
  • Understand and be involved in the research of the science behind the diagnostic test
  • Advise doctors on the results and on the technology available for patients.

All as a state registered healthcare professional in a truly unique, in demand and rewarding role.


Higher Specialist Scientific Programme (HSST)

As your career progresses, Clinical Scientists are eligible to further train as Consultant Clinical Scientists in Clinical and Scientific Computing, to demonstrate significant expertise at the intersection of Computer Science and Healthcare.

STP Equivalence
This is portfolio route by the Academy of Healthcare Sciences, where the pre-registrant demonstrates equivalency to the Scientist Training Programme outcomes. A master's degree is not required although the pre-registrant must demonstrate working to master's level.

Route II
This route allows a work-based competency learning route for those who have a masters and relevant experience. The pre-registrant works towards and compiles a portfolio of evidence, demonstrating competency in Clinical Computing to the level of Clinical Scientist.

About Andrew:

He studied BSc & MSc Computer Science, worked in IT industry for a while and he is now training as a clinical scientist in physiological measurement & clinical computing, under Route II, in the James Cook University Hospital's Medical Physics Department.

 

(For more information email Dr. Tim Storer: timothy.storer@glasgow.ac.uk)

Healthcare Seminar: Towards Bayesian phylogenetics via systematic search and gradient ascent (12 January, 2022)

Speaker: Prof. Frederick Matsen

Phylogenetic (evolutionary tree) inference is a key tool for understanding evolutionary systems. This includes viral adaptation and genomic epidemiology, as well as the antibody response to infection and vaccination. Bayesian phylogenetic analysis allows us to assess and integrate out tree uncertainty to obtain more reliable estimates of other model variables of interest (e.g. transmission rates). However, Bayesian posterior distributions on phylogenetic trees remain difficult to sample despite decades of effort. The complex discrete and continuous model structure of trees means that recent inferential methods developed for Euclidean space are not easily applicable to the phylogenetic case. Thus, we are left with random-walk Markov Chain Monte Carlo (MCMC) with uninformed tree modification proposals; these traverse tree space slowly because phylogenetic posteriors are concentrated on a small fraction of the very many possible trees.

In this talk, I will give a relatively non-technical overview of the work we have done to enable Bayesian phylogenetic inference via optimization. This work has led to a new discrete inferential target, which we call the "subsplit directed acyclic graph," and a new algorithm that will allow us to infer this structure using methods analogous to much faster maximum-likelihood (point-estimate) methods for phylogenetics. I will also describe how, once this structure is in hand, we can perform variational inference for continuous parameters via stochastic gradient descent. 

Biography:

Dr. Frederick “Erick” Matsen is an expert in computational biology, which is the science of using biological data to develop computer algorithms, or programs, to understand biological systems and relationships. His research team has developed new methods to analyze data generated by sequencing the DNA of viruses, immune cells and complex environmental samples containing many microorganisms. The team also pursues more abstract questions about the methods used to construct evolutionary trees. Another focus of Dr. Matsen’s work is on improving software used in computational biology, both by developing open source tools and by contributing to work on larger, collaborative projects.

Registration: https://uofglasgow.zoom.us/meeting/register/tJYsf-2tpjkqHte7oAoHA8svaCuDku4j0eJ8  

Deep learning for medical image analysis (02 November, 2021)

Speaker: Dr. Alison ONeil

Radiologists are under pressure to handle an ever-increasing volume of medical imaging. In the meantime, deep learning solutions have demonstrated impressive performance for imaging tasks of classification, segmentation and translation, opening up opportunities for AI to assist and automate imaging workflows. Training deep learning solutions for real-world healthcare applications involves ethical, legal and practical performance considerations. As we look to scale deep learning to a wide range of clinical applications, we also need to find ways to reduce reliance on pixel-level expert annotations whilst retaining clinically acceptable accuracy. This talk will cover some of Canon’s research in this area.

 

Biography:

Dr Alison Q O’Neil is a Principal Scientist in the AI Research Team at Canon Medical Research Europe and Honorary Research Fellow at the University of Edinburgh. She leads an AI Research team at Canon who focus on imaging and natural language processing for healthcare problems. Her research interests span techniques for learning with less, multimodal learning, knowledge informed machine learning, and causality.

 Registration is required to attend the event: https://uofglasgow.zoom.us/meeting/register/tJUuf-2prD0sG91BDJPMlW9HKqBz6itv8CgP 

 

Scottish Centre for Innovation in Spinal Cord Injury research seminar (03 June, 2021)

Speaker: series hosted by Dr. Aleksandra Vuckovic

Programme and Zoom details below: 

12:30-1 p.m. Dr Mariel Purcell MD, NHS, Director of the Queen Elizabeth National Spinal Injuries Unit, Glasgow : “Scottish Centre for Innovation in Spinal Cord Injury: research activities and a journey through patient recovery “ 

1:00-1:20 p.m. Ms Claire Lincoln, QENSIU & Glasgow Caledonian University, “'The role of physiotherapy in spinal cord injury'

1:20 p.m. -200 p.m. Dr Aleksandra Vuckovic , University of Glasgow “Sensory motor neurorehabilitation and neuroimaging diagnostic”

Break 2:00-2:10 p.m.

2:10-2:40 p.m. Professor John Riddell, University of Glasgow “Mechanisms of neuropathic pain after spinal cord injury and the role of the spinothalamic tract”

2:40-3:10 p.m. Dr Samira Saadoun, Dr Marios Papadopolous, St George’s University of London “Acute spinal cord injury: monitoring from the injury site and the DISCUS trial.

3:10-3:30 p.m. Dr Bethel Osuagwu, University of Glasgow: “Implementation of active engagement in motor rehabilitation”

Break: 3:30-3:40 p.m.

3:40-4:00 p.m. Dr Henrik Gollee, University of Glasgow: “Ultrasound Imaging of muscle and abdominal stimulation for breathing in SCI”

4:00-4:20 p.m. Dr Euan McCaughey, QENSIU & Neura, Australia “From Glasgow to the world: collaborative research at the QENSIU”

4:20-4:40 p.m. Dr Sylvie Coupaud, University of Strathclyde “Current understanding of disuse osteoporosis after spinal cord injury and rehabilitation options to counteract it”

4:40-5:00 p.m. Looking into the future

Zoom details: 

https://uofglasgow.zoom.us/j/96778345264?pwd=c25kTzlYWFRvVFRHeU5BWlQzdWcvdz09

Meeting ID: 967 7834 5264

Passcode: 925540

One tap mobile

+442034815237,,96778345264#,,,,*925540# United Kingdom

Pain, learning, and technology-based treatment approaches. (21 May, 2021)

Speaker: Ben Seymour

Pain is an extremely useful sense, providing a sensory signal that warns us about impending tissue damage. What makes this an especially powerful sense is its ability to drive learning: allowing us to learn from painful mistakes to avoid harm in the future; and after an injury, shaping the way we change our behaviour to maximise protection and encourage recuperation. In the brain, the organisation of the pain systems seems to reflect its core role as a learning and control signal, and in my talk I will outline some of the computational and neurobiological findings that speak to a hierarchical organization of control systems. A central facet of this is the way in which the system tunes the perception of pain - termed endogenous modulation - to maximise the effectiveness of learning. However, it also seems likely that the learning processes that protect us after injury may make us susceptible to chronic pain, and I'll discuss evidence to support a role of brain learning mechanisms in clinical pain groups. As a corollary, however, this may provide insight into how learning-oriented technologies could help patients recover from chronic pain.

Meeting URL: https://uofglasgow.zoom.us/j/93802302838?pwd=czVYUkZyV0UzblhTMXBlRm9ZVTNxZz09

Zoom Meeting ID:938 0230 2838

Passcode:571802

GCEC Seminar: Multiscale modeling of lung biomechanics (12 May, 2021)

Speaker: Prof Daniel Hurtado

Title: Multiscale modeling of lung biomechanics

Abstract: Covid-19 pneumonia has quickly become a leading cause of death worldwide, boosting the interest of the scientific computing community in creating accurate models of the respiratory system for in silico experimentation and medical discovery. In this talk, I will present our current efforts towards creating a multiscale framework to achieve whole-lung predictive simulations. Drawing concepts from finite-deformation homogenization theory, I will introduce a microstructural model for the poroelastic behavior of the lung tissue. I will further discuss our validation efforts and comment on the predictiveness of the tissue model. Finally, I will present how the proposed micromechanical model can be integrated into whole-lung simulations of healthy and diseased conditions and discuss future directions in lung modeling.

Short Bio: Daniel Hurtado is an associate professor with the School of Engineering and the Institute for Biological and Medical Engineering at Pontificia Universidad Catolica de Chile. He leads the Computational Medicine Group, an interdisciplinary team that focuses on creating physiology-based digital replicas of the human lungs, with applications in the study of mechanical ventilation therapies and early diagnosis of pulmonary diseases. Prof. Hurtado received his M.S. and Ph.D. degrees from the California Institute of Technology as a Fulbright fellow. He is an elected member of the World Council of Biomechanics since 2018.

Zoom link: https://uofglasgow.zoom.us/j/92841584390?pwd=aHZFYUtBS2kyU0duK3ZmanVEeXl4Zz09


Developing the rehabilitation technology of the future: Sir Jules Thorn Centre for Co-Creation of Rehabilitation Technology (20 April, 2021)

Speaker: Dr Andrew Kerr

The global prevalence of severely disabling conditions is increasing (WHO).  Rehabilitation can improve functional capacity and quality of life when it is applied intensively,  the current workforce is, however, totally inadequate to provide evidence-based levels of rehabilitation in most countries, including the UK.

 

For nearly 60 years the Rehabilitation Engineering Research Group at the University of Strathclyde has developed and researched world leading rehabilitation technology, measurement techniques and clinical interventions related to disability, many of which are now routine in clinical practice. We and others have been developing advanced rehabilitation technologies to enable a model of rehabilitation at scale in which technology is used to enable the user to drive and manage their own rehabilitation. We understand that despite evidence of effectiveness these advanced rehabilitation technologies are not always cost effective, user friendly or widely available, limiting their adoption.

With an initial focus on stroke survivors, our co-creation centre will employ a novel, user-centred, research model coupled with our engineering and rehabilitation expertise to develop new, scalable, rehabilitation technology and associated processes; an approach we can then apply to other user groups. The value of enabling effective, community based, rehabilitation has never been higher, particularly given the ongoing impact of COVID-19. The effects of the virus are increasing the need for rehabilitation services, while also preventing patients, user groups and carers from accessing support from health professionals in the usual settings due to lockdown and health and safety measures.

Direct plasmonic detection of circulating tumor DNA in colorectal cancer patients (24 March, 2021)

Speaker: Giuseppe Spoto

Standard clinical protocols for evaluating tumour profiling are usually based on tissue biopsy, which consists of sampling cells from the human body using special needles or surgery. Tissue biopsy constitutes a significant barrier for easy and frequent monitoring of cancer patients and is subject to limitations, including the difficulty in accounting for tumour cells heterogeneity. In a liquid biopsy, biological fluids are instead sampled to monitor the level of cancer biomarkers available in bodily fluids such as peripheral blood and blood-derived products such as plasma and serum. The detection of nucleic acid biomarkers for cancer diagnosis and patient follow-up based on liquid biopsy represents a challenging task for current biosensing platforms. Recently, several methods for detecting blood cancer mutations have been proposed, generally relying on multi-step and PCR-based, time-consuming and cost-ineffective procedures. PCR suffers from artefacts generated by sample contamination and recombination between homologous regions of DNA. Efforts have been made to identify innovative PCR-free protocols for DNA detection. Most of such protocols exploit strategies for signal amplification based on the use of enzymes or metallic nanostructures. In particular, gold nanoparticles have been used to achieve the ultrasensitive detection of DNA. Possibilities offered by nanoparticle-enhanced surface plasmon resonance imaging (SPRI) in the detection of non-amplified human genomic DNA and DNA freely circulating in human blood will be discussed in the context of applications to cancer diagnosis based on liquid biopsy. By exploiting a liquid biopsy approach, we developed an ultrasensitive nanoparticle-enhanced plasmonic method for detecting attomolar tumour DNA in the plasma of colorectal cancer patients. The assay does not require the extraction of tumour DNA from plasma and catches it in volumes as low as 40 mL of plasma, which is at least an order of magnitude smaller than that required by state of the art liquid biopsy technologies. The assay was proven in plasma from CRC patients and healthy donors, and full discrimination between mutated DNA from patients over wild-type DNA from healthy volunteers was obtained, thus demonstrating its promising avenue for cancer monitoring based on liquid biopsy.

The presented work is part of the ULTRAPLACAD Horizon 2020 project (project n. 633937) activities. 

 

 

------------------------------

Giuseppe Spoto is a Professor of Analytical Chemistry at the University of Catania. He is also an Executive Committee member of the Biostructures and Biosystems National Institute (INBB). He received his PhD in Chemical Sciences from the University of Catania. His primary research focuses on the development of innovative detection methods and assays. Plasmonic biosensing and microfluidics are today used in his lab to design new assays to detect biomarkers freely circulating in the blood of cancer patients. His research has been primarily supported by grants from the European Commission and the Italian Ministry of Education, University and Research (MIUR), and he is the author and co-author of over 100 journal articles and book chapters. Giuseppe acted as the scientific coordinator of the ULTRAPLACAD (Ultrasensitive plasmonic devices for early cancer diagnosis) Horizon 2020 project, cited as an example of what Europe does for cancer patients in the European Parliament portal “What Europe does for me”.

IR spectroscopy of a mosquito: A new (and needed) method to study malaria vectors (12 March, 2021)

Speaker: Dr. Mario González Jiménez

Abstract


Anopheles gambiae and Anopheles arabiensis mosquitoes are the primary vectors of malaria in Africa. These mosquitoes, which often live sympathetically, are morphologically indistinguishable despite their large differences in behaviour and ecology (willingness to enter and rest in houses, biting behaviour, use of hosts, breeding conditions, resistance to insecticides, etc.) that mark vector control strategies. In addition, their vector competence depends on their age, for the simple reason that the period of development of the parasites in their body after biting an infected person is usually more than 10 days. [1]
However, despite the need in the field, an efficient method to characterise the age or species of large numbers of mosquitoes is still lacking. Currently, the species is determined by expensive PCR methods and the age by microscopic analysis of their ovaries using dissection.
We developed a cheap, fast method that does not require highly trained personnel to perform. [2] It consists in the employment of machine learning algorithms to model the changes that occur in the infrared spectrum of the cuticle with age and between species. After examining the IR spectra of more than 40,000 mosquitoes from Burkina Faso, Tanzania, and labs in Scotland, our method can currently predict the age and species of field mosquitoes with 89% and 95% accuracy, respectively.

 
References

1. Hayes, E. J. and Wall, R. (1999) Age‐grading adult insects: a review of techniques. Physiological Entomology, 24, 1-10.
2. González Jiménez, M. et al. (2019) Prediction of mosquito species and population age structure using mid-infrared spectroscopy and supervised machine learning. Wellcome Open Res 4:76.

Seeing molecular vibrations of cells in flow (05 March, 2021)

Speaker: Dr. Kotaro Hiramatsu,

Abstract: 

 Coherent Raman spectroscopy is a powerful method to analyze cells in a label-free manner. Specifically, it has been used for non-invasive visualization of biological molecules such as proteins, nucleic acids, and various metabolites at a single-cell level. Though coherent Raman imaging has had great success, up to a few to dozens of cells could be interrogated in a realistic timescale. To understand cellular heterogeneity, a method to realize larger-scale label-free cell measurements has been desired. Flow cytometry, in which many cells in a flow stream are rapidly interrogated optically or electronically, is an ideal method for realizing such a large-scale single-cell analysis. However, there are just a few reports [1] on Raman flow cytometry predominantly due to its limited signal acquisition rate compared to fluorescence, which is widely used in flow cytometry. Here we present the development of a broadband (400-1600 cm-1), high-throughput (>2,000 cells/s) coherent Raman spectroscopic flow cytometer [2] and its application to large-scale single-cell analyses of the astaxanthin productivity and photosynthetic dynamics of Haematococcus lacustris

[1] Song, Y. Yin, H. Huang, W. E. 2016. Curr. Opin. Chem. Biol., 33, 1–8. 

[2] Hiramatsu, K. et al. 2019. Sci. Adv., 5, eaau0241.

 

Short Bio: 

Dr. Kotaro Hiramatsu received his Ph.D. degree from the University of Tokyo, Japan, in 2016. In 2016, he joined the molecular spectroscopy laboratory, RIKEN as a special post-doctoral research fellow, and moved to the School of Science, the University of Tokyo as an Assistant Professor. In 2018, he was concurrently appointed as a researcher in Precursory Research for Embryonic Science and Technology (PRESTO) program in Japan Science and Technology Agency (JST). His current research interests include high-speed molecular spectroscopy, imaging, and microfluidics for elucidating molecular mechanisms of various biological function at a single-cell level. He has been awarded Research Encouragement Award (Ph.D. course) at the University of Tokyo, Springer Thesis Award, and best presentation awards at several international and domestic conferences.

 

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Plasmonic surface lattice resonances and their applications (19 February, 2021)

Speaker: Prof Alexander Grigorenko

Host: Prof Malcolm Kadodwala


 Abstract:

“We will discuss plasmonic surface lattice resonances which appear when metal nanoparticles are arranged in ordered arrays. If one of the diffracted waves propagates in the plane of the array, it may couple the localized plasmon resonances, leading to an exciting phenomenon of the drastic narrowing of plasmon resonances down to 1−2 nm in spectral width. This presents a dramatic improvement compared to a typical single particle resonance line width of >80 nm. The very high quality factors of these diffractively coupled plasmon resonances and related effects have made this topic a very active and exciting field for fundamental research, and increasingly, these resonances have been investigated for their potential in the development of practical devices for communications, optoelectronics, photovoltaics, biosensing, and other applications. We describe the basic physical principles and properties of plasmonic surface lattice resonances and pay special attention to the conditions of their excitation in different experimental architectures by considering the following: in-plane and out-of-plane polarizations of the incident light, symmetric and asymmetric optical (refractive index) environments, the presence of substrate conductivity, etc. We will also review recent progress in applications of plasmonic surface lattice resonances in various fields.”

Biography:

Prof. Grigorenko graduated from Moscow Physical Technical University in 1986 and got his PhD in 1989. He worked in the General Physics Institute for 10 years under the guidance of A. M. Prokhorov – laser inventor. After a spell as a postdoc in Bath and Plymouth Universities, he became a Lecturer and then Professor at the University of Manchester (from 2002). Prof. Grigorenko enjoys science in general and optics in particular.

Meeting link:

https://uofglasgow.zoom.us/j/97931764773?pwd=ZS9oUFI5YUNqZXNZWktvK28xK29Vdz09

Advances in electrical stimulation and neuromodulation (12 February, 2021)

Speaker: Yazi Al'Joboori, Sean Doherty and Anne Vanhoestenberghe

An overview of work undertaken at UCL's Aspire Centre for Rehabilitation Engineering and Assitive Technologies (CREATe) exploring a range of applications of electrical stimulation and neuromodulation with a focus on people living with a spinal cord injury. We will present results from studies on the effects of spinal stimulation (SS) and Functional Electrical Stimulation (FES) on descending motor control in able-bodied subjects, and combining FES and SS with physical rehabilitation strategies such as sit-to-stand training (STIM2STAND) and cycling with virtual reality (iCycle) to enhance functional recovery in SCI populations. We will also present work on the effects of non-invasive electrical stimulation on bladder overactivity following spinal cord injury, looking to translate successful techniques into practicable, wearable devices for long-term use. Our non SCI work includes an EMG control algorithm for an artificial larynx replacement and studies, in healthy volunteers, on the metabolic impact of electrical stimulation. Finally, we will briefly present a few technical elements in earlier stages of development.

Clinical implementation of a Raman spectroscopy device for detection of residual basal cell carcinoma during skin surgery (11 December, 2020)

Speaker: Dr Radu Boitor

Host: Dr Christopher Syme


 

Clinical implementation of a Raman spectroscopy device for detection of residual basal cell carcinoma during skin surgery 

 

Surgical removal is the main treatment method for basal cell carcinoma (BCC). The completeness of tumour removal is routinely assessed via histopathology, which can be used to identify tumours with high sensitivities and specificities. However, its intra-operative use during tissue-conserving surgery (such as in Mohs surgery) is limited by time-consuming tissue preparation steps and the diagnostic variability inherent in subjective image interpretation. 

 

We have developed and built a table-top device that can detect residual BCC on the resection surface of removed skin tissue specimens by using a combined Raman spectroscopy and auto-fluorescence microscopy approach. The Fast Raman device can measure the excision surface of skin specimens up to 2x2 cm in 30 minutes. The instrument is automated and highlights the presence of BCC objectively, enabling its use by clinical staff without extensive training. 

 

The Fast Raman device was recently integrated into the Mohs clinical workflow at the Nottingham NHS Treatment Centre and was used to obtain proof-of-concept results by measuring fresh tissue specimens intra-operatively. We measured a total of 115 fresh skin tissue layers (from 113 patients) from head-and-neck area, including nose, temple, eyelid, cheek, forehead, eyebrow, and lip. These measurements have provided an indication of instrument performance and have highlighted some of the challenges of translating such spectroscopic techniques from the laboratory into the clinic.

GCEC Seminar: Micromorphic Tissue Mechanics Accounting For Non-Affine Myocardial Deformation Characteristics (12 November, 2020)

Speaker: Dr Sebastian Skatulla

Zoom link: https://uofglasgow.zoom.us/j/93968561981?pwd=aHliYjd4bHNhN2pib1pLU1VNT24yZz09

Title: Micromorphic Tissue Mechanics Accounting For Non-Affine Myocardial Deformation Characteristics 

Abstract: Cardiovascular diseases are among the most common causes of death in the world. Computational modelling in combination with medical imaging techniques, mechanical tissue testing, as well as cell and molecular biological analysis has the potential to help better understanding the underlying physiological mechanisms of heart failure and guide decision making in finding patient-specific treatment options in the future.

Computational models, however, need to be realistic enough to accurately describe the highly heterogeneous and non-uniform myocardial material composition [1], its anisotropic mechanical properties, the electro-mechanical interaction during muscle contraction and other biological effects, such as residual stresses and remodelling processes.

In this contribution we want to focus on the passive response of the myocardium which is very compliant exhibiting large strains, in particular, while the heart is contracting and twisting to eject oxygenated blood into the circulatory system during the systolic phase of the heart cycle. In the past it has been discovered that the initially crimped and coiled collagen fibres straighten during passive filling [2] and that cardiac myocytes exhibit a certain degree of motion flexibility within the constraining cytoskeleton [3, 4]. In contrast to classical models of phenomenological nature, this work proposes a micromorphic continuum-based formulation [5] which features extra degrees of freedom and corresponding strain and stress measures. The approach can therefore account for the hierarchical fibrous characteristics of the myocardium which are associated with micro-structural deformation of muscle-fibre bundles as well as their motion relative to the bulk material. As such, the assumed hyperelastic material behaviour of myocardial tissue is represented by a non-linear strain energy function which includes contributions linked to the bulk material representing the cytoskeleton and the micromorphic-fibre continuum emulating the micro-kinematics of the interwoven muscle-fibre bundles.

 

Short Bio: Sebastian Skatulla is an Associate Professor of Structural Engineering and Mechanics at the University of Cape Town. He graduated  as Diplom Bau-Ingenieur (TH) from the Karlsruhe Institute of  Technology (KIT) in 2003. He was awarded his PhD degree in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Adelaide in 2007.

He is the Director of the Computational Continuum Mechanics Research Group (CCM)  which has its research activities centred in multiscale and multiphase continuum methods. Current activities comprise the poroelasticity of Antarctic sea-ice and biological tissue.

He is the President of the South African Association for Theoretical and Applied Mechanics (SAAM) and member of the Scientific Council of the International Centre for Mechanical Sciences (CISM).

References

[1] LeGrice, I.J., Smaill, B.H., Chai, L.Z., Edgar, S.G., Gavin, J.B. and Hunter, P.J., Laminar structure of the heart: ventricular myocyte arrangement and connective tissue architecture in the dog. Am. J. Physiol. Heart Circ. Physiol., 269:H571–H582, 1995.

[2] Robinson, T.F., Geraci, M.A., Sonnenblick, E.H. and Factor, S.M., Coiled perimysial fibers of papillary muscle in rat heart: Morphology, distribution, and changes in configuration. Circulation Research, 63:577–592, 1988.

[3] LeGrice, I.J., Takayama, Y. and Covell, J.W., Transverse shear along myocardial cleavage planes provides a mechanism for normal systolic wall thickening. Circulation research, 77(1):182–193, 1995.

[4] Spotnitz, H.M., Spotnitz, W.D., Cottrell, T.S., Spiro, D. and Sonnenblick, E.H., Cellular basis for volume related wall thickness changes in the rat left ventricle. Journal of molecular and cellular cardiology, 6(4):317–331, 1974.

[5] von Hoegen, M., Skatulla, S. and Schrder, J., , ”A generalized micromorphic approach accounting for variation and dispersion of preferred material directions”, Computers and Structures, 232: 105888, 2020

A critical view onto Deep Learning – and our hope to do it better. (04 June, 2020)

Speaker: Florentin Wörgötter

https://uofglasgow.zoom.us/j/93893720657

Modern AI is currently one of the central catch phrase in society and politicians consider it a “disruptive technology” potentially leading to major changes in the world, because – yes – there are indeed extremely powerful applications existing. Therefore, some handle this like the modern revelation for saving all our souls. In this talk, I would like to adopt a more critical stance and start by discussing “what scientist should not do (anymore)”, when it comes to Deep Learning research. 

Following this, I will try to show some examples from our own work, with the hope to convince the audience that we “do it (at least a little bit) better”. Specifically, first we show how across-layers feedback in networks will massively improve their performance. Second, we demonstrate, how certain NN-structures can be used to improve chaotic time series prediction by several 100%. And, third, we provide an algorithm to solve planning in complex mazes. This is traditionally addressed iteratively using step-after-step calculations. Different from this we can do this in a single shot with networks that do not have to learn anything. Strangely, this would allow Uber to calculate the shortest route for several taxis to reach a customer in one go, without having trained the system on the multi-agent problem.

From all this, my personal summary concerning Deep Learning is that it becomes more and more important to search for relevant questions than just to address more and more application examples. 

BiographyFlorentin Wörgötter studied biology and mathematics at the University of Düsseldorf, Germany. He received a Ph.D. degree, studying the visual cortex, from the University of Essen, Germany, in 1988. From 1988 to 1990, he was engaged in computational issues with the California Institute of Technology, Pasadena. He was a Researcher with the University of Bochum, Germany, in 1990, where he was investigating experimental and computational neuroscience of the visual system. From 2000 to 2005, he was a Professor of computational neuroscience with the Psychology Department, University of Stirling, U.K., where his interests strongly turned towards “Learning in Neurons.” Since July 2005, he has been the Head of the Computational Neuroscience Department at the Bernstein Center for Computational Neuroscience, Inst. Physics 3, University of Göttingen, Germany. His current research interests include information processing in closed-loop perception–action systems, especially addressing early cognitive aspects as well as learning/plasticity, which are tested in different robotic implementations. His group had developed the RunBot, which in its time about 12 years ago had been for quite a while the fastes, dynamic and adaptive biped walking robot based on neural control. 

Deeper and gentler: probing cells and tissues mechanics by light (14 January, 2020)

Speaker: Dr Silvia Caponi

Special seminar, hosted by Massimo. 

Applications of computational modelling to tackle pathophysiological problems in aortic and coronary circulations (27 November, 2019)

Speaker: Ryo Torii

Title: Applications of computational modelling to tackle pathophysiological problems in aortic and coronary circulations

Abstract:  Computational models in these days play increasingly important roles to tackle healthcare challenges by complementing experimental observations and/or used as a predictive tool. In this talk, several topics regarding development and application of computational modelling techniques for aortic and coronary diseases will be covered: (1) prediction of coronary atherosclerotic narrowing in native and stented vessels, (2) haemodynamic evaluation of coronary stents including bioresorbable scaffolds, (3) patient-specific computational prediction of LVAD performance and (4) augmenting 4DMR images using CFD. The first two topics are application of relatively straightforward approaches to large volume of patients, and the latter two are focused more on development of computational methods to handle technically challenging problems.

Bio: Ryo Torii is an associate professor at UCL Mechanical Engineering. His research interests have been in both developing new techniques of computational modelling and application to clinically-relevant problems, which are working hand-in-hand. Recent applications are primarily in the area of coronary artery atherosclerosis, especially to predict disease progression and to evaluate performance of various types of stents using computational modelling. He has been promoting use of computational modelling in clinical studies and has recently published an expert recommendation paper for clinical community (Gijsen et al. European Heart Journal 2019). He also has activities outside coronary artery pathophysiological analyses, including biomechanical analysis of aortic valve disease, growth prediction of tissue-engineered muscular constructs and process optimisation of biofabrication systems.

Effects of polymer characteristics and conformation on complex flow behavior of polymer solution (19 November, 2019)

Speaker: Ruri Hidema

The seminar related to dilute solution rheology and microfluidics will be composed of two parts.

The first part is the observation of sodium hyaluronate (Hyaluronic Acid Sodium salt, Na-HA) solution in planar abrupt contraction-expansion microchannels to discuss the effects of polymer flexibility and entanglement on elastic instability. As the rigidity of Na-HA depends on the ionic strength of a solvent, Na-HA was dissolved in water and phosphate buffered saline. The flow regimes of the Na-HA solutions in several planar abrupt contractionexpansion channels were characterized by rheological properties of the solution. It was found that the entanglement of Na-HA in the solution is a more dominant factor affecting the flow regimes than the solution relaxation time and polymer rigidity [1].

The second part of the seminar is measurements of drag force due to synthetic polymers in flowing fluids by using a scanning probe microscope (SPM). Methoxy polyethyleneglycol thiol (mPEG-SH) was attached to the cantilever probe of the SPM, which was further immersed in flows of glycerol and polyethyleneglycol (PEG) solutions. The mPEG-SH-bonded cantilever detects the extra force due to polymer-polymer and polymer-fluids interaction in flowing fluids. The conformation of the mPEG-SH polymer bonded to the probe of the cantilever was predicted, and the drag force due to the deformed mPEG-SH was calculated. The forces detected by experiments using the SPM and the forces obtained by model calculations were compared, and found to be reasonably close [2].

Understanding Self-Assembly for Nanostructure Fabrication (27 September, 2019)

Speaker: Alexander Liddle

DNA self-assembly provides a route to scalable nanostructure fabrication with molecular precision.  It can be used to build functional, dynamic devices incorporating a wide variety of other nanoscale objects.  However, to fully realize the versatility of this technology requires that the rules that link yield to design and processing must be elucidated.  DNA origami, in which a long single strand of DNA is folded into a predetermined structure by the addition of ≈ 200 oligomers that bind sequence-specifically, is a common and representative system.  We are working to understand the thermodynamics and kinetics that govern nanostructure assembly – a task that is complicated by the high level of cooperativity that occurs during the origami folding process

Scaffold-Based Tissue Engineering – From bench to bedside back to bench (26 September, 2019)

Speaker: Professor Dietmar Hutmacher

Prof Hutmacher is a biomedical engineer, an educator, an inventor, and a creator of new intellectual property opportunities. He directs the Centre for Regenerative Medicine and the ARC Training Centre in Additive Biomanufacturing at QUT, a multidisciplinary team of researchers including engineers, cell biologists, polymer chemists, clinicians, and veterinary surgeons. Prof Hutmacher is an internationally recognized leader in the fields of biomaterials, tissue engineering and regenerative medicine with expertise in commercialization. He has translated a bone tissue engineering concept from the laboratory through to clinical application involving in vitroexperiments, in vivo preclinical animal studies and ultimately clinical trials. His recent research efforts have resulted in traditional scientific/academic outputs as well as pivotal commercialisation outcomes. His pre-eminent international standing and impact on the field are illustrated by his publication record (more than 300 journal articles, edited 14 books, 70 book chapters and some 500 conference papers) and citation record (google scholar, more than  44,000 citations, h-index of 104 ).

Innovations in Electro-cardiology for Diagnosis & Management of Heart Failure (24 September, 2019)

Speaker: Pavel Leinveber

  • 5 pm         Registration
  • 5.30 pm    Evening Lectures - Yudowitz Lecture Room, Wolfson Medical Building
    • A Welcome form University of Glasgow (10 minutes)
    • An Introduction to FNUSA-ICRC, Brno (home of Mendel & genetics) (20 minutes)
    • “Innovations in Electro-cardiology for Diagnosis & Management of Heart Failure” Pavel Leinveber (30 minutes)
  • Questions: (15 minutes)

Microfluidics for novel diagnostics and therapies (19 August, 2019)

Speaker: Prof. Zulfiqar Ali

Zulfiqur has a first degree in Chemistry and a PhD in Instrumentation and Analytical Science from the University of Manchester. He was research fellow at the University of Warwick carrying development of an amperometric glucose sensor for diabetes monitoring. Zulfiqur has held academic positions in the Department of Pharmacy at the University of Brighton and the School of Science and Engineering at Teesside University. He has been Assistant Dean for Research and Innovation as well as Dean of the Graduate Research School at Teesside University where he had responsibility for the University’s REF 2014 submission. He now has responsibility for the Healthcare Innovation Centre (HIC) which a partnership with TWI Ltd. Zulfiqur has research interests within novel electrochemical and optical transduction, micro and nanofabrication, microfluidics, bioprocessing and point-of-care testing. He is also director of Anasyst Ltd which is a spin-out company that has arisen from some of his research.

GCEC Seminar (24 July, 2019)

Speaker: Heleen Fehervary

Hypnosis for Chronic Pain Management: Efficacy, Mediators, and Moderator (23 May, 2019)

Speaker: Professor Mark Jensen

Evidence suggests the possibility that brain mechanisms—specifically, slow wave brain oscillations, as measured by electroencephalogram—may play an important role in the beneficial effects of hypnotic treatment. This talk will present and discuss the findings from four studies to evaluate this possibility:

(1) a laboratory study examining the effects of a single session of four different pain interventions (hypnosis, meditation, alpha/theta oscillation biofeedback, and transcranial direct current stimulation or tDCS) relative to a sham tDCS condition,

(2) a clinical trial examining the ability of baseline oscillations in different bandwidths to predict treatment outcome, and

(3) two pilot studies evaluating the potential beneficial effects of theta oscillation neurofeedback for enhancing response to hypnosis treatment. 

sequential operation droplet array (SODA) technique for performing automated picoliter to nanoliter-scale droplet manipulation, analysis and screening. (22 May, 2019)

Speaker: Prof Qun Fang

We developed a sequential operation droplet array (SODA) technique for performing automated picoliter to nanoliter-scale droplet manipulation, analysis and screening. It can achieve multiple liquid handling manipulations including droplet generation, indexing, transferring, splitting and fusion, under control of a computer program. We have applied the SODA systems in multiple areas including enzyme inhibitor screening, cell-based drug combination screening, protein crystallization screening, digital PCR, cell culture and migration testing, single cell microRNA quantification and single cell proteomic analysis. 

Host Thomas Franke

Accurate simulation of the heart, from microtissues to organs - How data driven biophysical models of cardiovascular dynamics can provide insight in experimental and clinical investigations. (10 May, 2019)

Speaker: Dr Samuel Wall

Biophysical models describing the function of the cardiovascular system promises improved understanding of the heart and its dynamics in health and disease.   However, the myocardium is a complex multiscale material, and while detailed models and constitutive laws have been developed to describe its behaviour, fitting these models meaningfully to actual data is often complicated by the large number, and the interaction, of required parameters.  Although numerous techniques, from trial and error to advanced optimization, can be used to fit data, challenges still exist, often due to the computational requirements when many parameters need to be varied.    This is particularly difficult when considering real observations, where heterogeneous noisy data sets are the norm, and often time constraints not compatible with long computational requirements.   Here we discuss a range of simulation approaches linked to such experimental and clinical data streams, where we perform rapid data assimilation in order to increase the information content of measurements.  Examples include creating new diagnostics for clinicians, or the ability to quantitate the molecular effect of tested drugs on key cellular pathways.  These data driven approaches are enabled by modern techniques in software and hardware that allow rapid solving of difficult optimization problems.  We consider cases from whole organs to engineered microtissues, with a unified goal of integrating in silico computational frameworks into measurement streams to improve the resolution of mechanistic understanding in complex systems.

Organiser - Nikolaj Gaadegard

BME Seminar - Investigating Cardiomyocyte Mechanosensing with Nanopillars and Nanopattern (18 April, 2019)

Speaker: Dr Thomas Iskratsch

Investigating Cardiomyocyte Mechanosensing with Nanopillars and Nanopattern

The composition and the stiffness of cardiac microenvironment change during development and/or in heart disease. Cardiomyocytes (CMs) and their progenitors sense these changes, which decides over the cell fate and can trigger CM (progenitor) proliferation, differentiation, de-differentiation or death. The field of mechanobiology has seen a constant increase in output that also includes a wealth of new studies specific to cardiac or cardiomyocyte mechanosensing. As a result, mechanosensing and transduction in the heart is increasingly being recognized as a main driver of regulating the heart formation and function. However, the molecular mechanism of cardiomyocyte rigidity sensing is still elusive.

To study the regulation of cardiomyocyte rigidity sensing on a molecular level we combine nanopillar arrays, PDMS gels with defined stiffness and FRET molecular tension sensors (Pandey et, Dev Cell, 2018). Moreover, because not only the stiffness but also the molecular composition of the adhesions change in pathological conditions (Ward et al, BBAMCR, 2019) we further want to study the implication of the changing adhesion structure and mechanics in detail. To this aim, we adapted a surface functionalization approach using DNA origami with conjugated receptor ligands (uni- or multivalent) that are placed onto nanopatterns fabricated with electron beam lithography (Hawkes et al, Faraday Discussions, 2019).

Together our approach indicates a specific cardiomyocyte rigidity sensing mechanism and gives new insights into the nanoscale organisation of cardiomyocyte integrins.

Ensembl Browser Workshop (09 April, 2019)

Speaker: EMBL-EBI trainers

The Ensembl project at www.ensembl.org provides a comprehensive and integrated source of annotation of mainly vertebrate genome sequences. This workshop offers participants hands-on experience in the use of the Ensembl genome browser and provides users with the necessary background information. The sister project at www.ensemblgenomes.org can also be covered if participants are working with bacteria, plants, fungi, protists or (invertebrate) metazoa.

Aimed at wet-lab researcheres, the only prerequisite for the browser workshop is general knowledge of molecular biology and genomics and a familiarity with web browsers.

Only £60. 

More information here: https://www.polyomics.gla.ac.uk/course-ensembl-workshop_Apr_2019.html

 

Recursive Bayesian methods for parameter estimation and aspects of identifiability (08 February, 2019)

Speaker: Sanjay Pant

Patient-specific computational modelling of biomedical systems requires estimation of a large number of model parameters. This estimation is typically performed through clinical measurements, which are inherently uncertain, acquired in the patient. In recent years Kalman-filtering type methods, which can be viewed as recursive Bayesian methods or data assimilation techniques, have gained popularity for this purpose. This talk will present the formulation and application of such methods. Particular focus will on the the widely used Unscented Kalman Filter, which provides computational efficiency. Applications will be presented on both lumped-parameter and geometric multi-scale models of haemodynamics. Two pathophysiologies of congenital heart disease will be of concern: i) coarctation of the aorta; and ii) hypoplastic left heart syndrome (single-ventricle physiology). Finally, some aspects of parameter identifiability, the question of whether parameters can be identified/estimated given a set of measurements, will be presented.

Translating computer simulation towards a clinical centre: Patient-Specific models for Planning Cardiovascular procedures (07 February, 2019)

Speaker: Claudio Capelli

Patient-specific computational models have been extensively developed over the last decade and applied to investigate a wide range of the cardiovascular mechanics. Modelling can also offer support to personalized and predictive medicine. Such vision could be particularly suitable to face the wide variety of heart disease. The translation of these technologies into clinical applications, however, is still far from becoming a standard of care in clinical practice and currently limited to few single cases. This talk reports the experience of a single clinical and engineering centre, based in the main UK children hospital, which has been involved in the development of a modelling framework that allows the use of realistic simulations to prospectively support clinical decisions.

After introducing the numerical methods used in this study including finite element analyses (FEA), computational fluid-dynamics (CFD) and fluid-structure interaction (FSI), I will focus on a cohort of patients who were referred for various intervention and how the planning was supported by integrating computational simulations within a clinical workflow. Image data routinely acquired for clinical assessment (MRI, CT, echocardiography, x-ray) were postprocessed to set up patient-specific models. FEA and CFD were performed to predict structural and haemodynamic changes following the procedures. Simulations were carried out to: select the best-matching device for each anatomy; address the risks of spatial interference with surrounding structures; optimize size and positions of device; design a surgical patch. The results were presented during clinical unit’s multidisciplinary meeting. Measurable clinical outcomes from the real procedures were compared with the computer model predictions.

The numerical results of FEA and CFD analyses were in accordance with the delivered treatment in all cases except in one case. Post-procedural images were also used to confirm correct prediction of sizing and positioning of the stent. Pressure and velocity data acquired by transthoracic echocardiography showed agreement with the results calculated with CFD analyses with a max error less than 3 mmHg. Each computational framework process was completed within a week with no requirements for additional clinical data.

The early results of using computer simulations in clinics seem to be promising in terms of reliability of the simulations, response time, and usefulness in clinical practice. The translation of these technologies is crucial as it can limit the procedural risks for treatment of CHD cases.

Functional Materials for Biomedical Science (11 December, 2018)

Speaker: William Peveler

Colloidal (nano)materials offer a huge range of functionality derived by tuning their size, shape and chemical makeup, as well as their interface with the surrounding environment. I will describe several pieces of my work that utilise chemical control over these properties to solve specific biomedical challenges. In particular, I will describe new tools for fluorescent imaging, labelling and sensing derived from biotargetting interfaces on colloidal gold nanoparticles (spheres, rods and clusters) and quantum dots. I will then present recent work on the use of fluorescent polymers as a cross-reactive array-based sensor for liver fibrosis, and discuss the implications of this approach for biomarker detection and discovery. 

References:

(1)        Peveler, W. J.; Yazdani, M.; Rotello, V. M. ACS Sens.20161(11), 1282.

(2)        Cortés, E.; Huidobro, P. A.; Sinclair, H. G.; Guldbrand, S.; Peveler, W. J.; Davies, T.; Parrinello, S.; Görlitz, F.; Dunsby, C.; Neil, M. A. A.; Sivan, Y.; Parkin, I. P.; French, P. M. W.; Maier, S. A. ACS Nano201610(11), 10454.

(3)        Peveler, W. J.; Landis, R. F.; Yazdani, M.; Day, J. W.; Modi, R.; Carmalt, C. J.; Rosenberg, W. M.; Rotello, V. M. Adv. Mater.201830(28), 1800634.

(4)        Algar, W. R.; Jeen, T.; Massey, M.; Peveler, W. J.; Asselin, J. Langmuir2018, 10.1021/acs.langmuir.8b02733.

Biography:

Dr William Peveler is a University of Glasgow Lord Kelvin Adam Smith (LKAS) Fellow working between the Division of Biomedical Engineering and School of Chemistry. 

After work with Dr Martin Grossel and Professor Harry Anderson FRS at the University of Oxford for his MChem, Dr Peveler moved to London to undertake a PhD in Chemistry at UCL, as part of the SECReT CDT. His research focussed on colloidal nanomaterials for array-based sensing applications, for which he was awarded the Ramsay Medal.

Dr Peveler then won an EPSRC Doctoral Prize Fellowship and Royal Society International Exchange Grant to undertake 2 years of postdoctoral work with Professors Claire Carmalt and William Rosenberg (UCL/Royal Free Hospital) and Professor Vincent Rotello (UMass Amherst). Here he sought to apply array-based sensing to the problem of liver disease. Most recently Dr Peveler moved to Canada to take up a Killam Postdoctoral Research Fellowship at the University of British Columbia, working on point-of-care diagnostic technologies the laboratory of Professor Russ Algar. Dr Peveler then returned to the UK and moved north to join the University of Glasgow in November 2018, beginning his independent research career.  

Integrating supramolecular chemistry and engineering principles for advanced and functional biomaterials design (19 July, 2018)

Speaker: Professor Alvaro Mata

Invited seminar (21 June, 2018)

Speaker: Robert McMeeking

Invited seminar (20 June, 2018)

Speaker: Michael Sheetz

Digital Manufacturing of Microfluidic Devices (02 May, 2018)

Speaker: Albert Folch

Digital Manufacturing (DM) - of which 3D-Printing is an example - has been applied with great success to improve design efficiency and part performance in the automobile industry, aeronautics, microelectronics, architecture, sportswear, and biomedical implants, among others. However, by comparison with other manufacturing fields, microfluidics has been slow to adopt DM. Microfluidic chips are still designed largely from scratch, the materials (usually thermoset or thermoplastic polymers) are often manually poured into a mold to form 2D-layer replicas, and the mold replicas are manually aligned and bonded to form the final device. The production of microfluidic devices by micromolding, while being optimized for mass manufacturing, cannot be optimized at the same time for design variety. These limitations are difficult for researchers to assimilate because micromolding has been the prevalent mode of microfluidics manufacturing for over two decades. On the other hand, the economics of DM are well-suited for microfluidics because, as opposed to molding approaches, the cost per device does not scale up with its 3D complexity ("complexity is free") and is insensitive to the size of the production batch, i.e. DM is ideal for project customization ("variety is free"). We are developing microfluidic devices through stereolithography (SL), a form of 3D-Printing, in order to make microfluidic technology readily available via the web to biomedical scientists. We have developed microfluidic devices by SL in PEG-DA-based resins with automation and biocompatibility ratings similar to those made with PDMS

Albert Folch received his BSc in physics from the University of Barcelona (UB), Spain, in 1989. In 1994, he received his PhD in surface science and nanotechnology from the UB's Physics Dept. During his PhD he was a visiting scientist from 1990-91at the Lawrence Berkeley Lab working on AFM under Dr. Miquel Salmeron. From 1994-1996, he was a postdoc at MIT developing MEMS under the advice of Martin Schmidt (EECS) and Mark Wrighton (Chemistry). In 1997, he joined the laboratory of Mehmet Toner as a postdoc at Harvard's Center for Engineering in Medicine to apply soft lithographic methods to tissue engineering. He has been at Seattle's UW BioE since June 2000 where he is now a full Professor, accumulating over 6,700 citations (averaging >82 citations/paper over his whole career). His lab works at the interface between microfluidics, cancer and neurobiology. In 2001 he received a NSF Career Award and in 2014 he was elected to the American Institute for Medical and Biological Engineering (AIMBE) College of Fellows (Class of 2015). He serves on the Advisory Board of Lab on a Chip since 2006. Albert Folch is the author of four books, including "Introduction to BioMEMS", a textbook now adopted by more than 77 departments in 17 countries (including 40 universities in the U.S. alone). Since 2007, the lab runs a celebrated outreach art program called BAIT (Bringing Art Into Technology) which has produced seven exhibits, a popular resource gallery of >2,000 free images related to microfluidics and microfabrication, and a YouTube channel that plays microfluidic videos with music which accumulates ~133,000 visits since 2009.

 

Host: Professor Huabing Yin

 

Filtering without a filter - microfluidics-based approach for industrial cell separation (17 April, 2018)

Speaker: Dr Monika Tomecka and Dr Brian Miller

uFraction8 is developing scalable, sustainable and gentle cell separation system for industrial scale biomass dewatering and concentration. uFraction8 system works with most cell types including yeast, microalgae, mammalian cells, bacteria and others, opening possibilities to enable sustainable bioprocessing in the broad spectrum of markets. They will present their developments and are looking to collaborate with interested researchers

 

https://www.scotsman.com/business/companies/tech/water-treatment-start-up-ufraction8-wins-murgitroyd-innovator-award-1-4502197

http://www.netmarketfluidics.eu/dr-brian-miller-ufraction8-wins-net-market-fluidics-pilot-project-competition

 

Biomaterial physical properties in tissue regeneration (11 April, 2018)

Speaker: Amaia Cipitria

Cells respond not only to biochemical but also to physical cues, such as stiffness, geometry and matrix degradability. In-vitro studies showed that hydrogel elasticity or degradation properties alone can direct cell differentiation, while scaffold geometry can control tissue growth rate. However, little is known about how these findings translate to an in-vivo scenario. Bone defect healing experiments were used to investigate how the architecture of a semi-rigid scaffold may pattern the organization of collagen fibers and subsequent mineralization in-vivo, using a 30 mm critical-sized defect in sheep tibia as a model system. The hierarchical material structure and properties of regenerated tissue were investigated using a multi-scale and multi-modal approach. Next, alginate hydrogels with varying stiffness were used for in-vivo host cell recruitment and osteogenic differentiation in a rat femoral 5 mm critical-sized defect. Current activities focus on tailoring the spatio-temporal degradation properties of novel click-crosslinked alginate hydrogels to direct cell migration and proliferation, guide spatial distribution and directionality of extracellular matrix deposition, and pattern in-vivo tissue formation. 

From Superhydrophobic to Super-Slippery Surfaces (09 March, 2018)

Speaker: Professor Glen McHale

On a wet day we need coats to keep dry, windscreen wipers to see and reservoirs to collect water and keep us alive. Our cars need oil to lubricate their engines, our ships need hulls that reduce drag and our planes need wings that limit ice formation. Nature has learnt to control water in a myriad of ways. The Lotus leaf cleanses itself of dust when it rains, a beetle in the desert collects drinking water from an early morning fog and some spiders walk on water. In all of these effects the unifying scientific principle is the control of the wettability of materials, often through the use of micro- and nano-scale topography to enhance the effect of surface chemistry. In this seminar I will outline recent examples of our research on smart surface-fluid interactions, including drag reduction and flow due to surface texture,1-4 interface localized liquid dielectrophoresis to create superspreading and dewetting,5-7 lubricant infused surfaces to remove pinning,8-10 and the Leidenfrost effect using turbine-like surfaces to create new types of heat engines and microfluidics.11-12

References

1.    Busse, A. et al. Change in drag, apparent slip and optimum air layer thickness for laminar flow over an idealised superhydrophobic surface. J. Fluid Mech. 727, 488–508 (2013).

2.    Brennan, J. C. et al. Flexible conformable hydrophobized surfaces for turbulent flow drag reduction. Sci. Reports 5, 10267 (2015).

3.    McHale, G. in Non-wettable Surfaces Theory, Prep. Appl. (Ras, R. & Marmur, A.) (RSC, 2016).

4.    Li, J. et al., Topological liquid diode. Science Advances 3, eaao3530 (2017).

5.    Brown, C.V. et al. Voltage-programmable liquid optical interface. Nat. Photonics 3, 403–405 (2009).

6.    McHale, G. et al. Voltage-induced spreading and superspreading of liquids. Nat. Commun. 4, 1605 (2013).

7.    Edwards, A.M.J. et al. Not spreading in reverse: The dewetting of a liquid film into a single droplet. Sci. Adv. 2, e1600183 (2016).

8.    Ruiz-Gutiérrez, É. et al., Energy invariance in capillary systems. Phys. Rev. Lett. 118, art. 218003 (2017).

9.    Guan, J.H. et al., Drop transport and positioning on lubricant-impregnated surfaces. Soft Matter 12, 3404-3410 (2017).

10. Luo, J.T. et al., Slippery liquid-infused porous surfaces and droplet transportation by surface acoustic waves. Phys. Rev. Appl. 7, 014017 (2017).

11. Wells, G. G. et al., A sublimation heat engine. Nat. Commun. 6, 6390 (2015).

12. Dodd, L.E. et al., Low friction droplet transportation on a substrate with a selective Leidenfrost effect. ACS Appl. Mater. Interf. 8 22658–22663 (2016).

Acknowledgements The financial support of the UK Engineering & Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) and Reece Innovation ltd is gratefully acknowledged. Many collaborators at Durham, Edinburgh, Nottingham Trent and Northumbria Universities were instrumental in the work described.

 

Biography. Glen McHale is a theoretical and experimental applied and materials physicist. At Northumbria University, he combines leading the Smart Materials & Surfaces laboratory with his role as Pro Vice-Chancellor for the Faculty of Engineering & Environment. His research considers the interaction of liquids with surfaces and has a particular focus on the use of surface texture/structure via microfabrication and materials methods, and the use of electric fields to control the wetting properties of surfaces. His work includes novel superhydrophobic surfaces, surfaces with drag reducing and slippery properties, and electrowetting/dielectrophoresis to control the wetting of surfaces. Glen has written invited “News and Views”, highlight, emerging area and review articles for a wide range of journals covering superhydrophobicity, dynamic wetting, liquid marbles and drag reduction. He has published over 170 refereed journal papers. He is a Fellow of the Institute of Physics, a Fellow of the RSA, a Senior Member of the IEEE, a member of the UK Engineering & Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) Peer Review College, and he was a panel member for the "Electrical and Electronic Engineering, Metallurgy and Materials" unit of the last UK-wide national assessment of research (REF2014). Along with colleagues at Northumbria, Nottingham Trent and Oxford Universities, he has developed a public understanding of science exhibition, "Natures Raincoats" (www.naturesraincoats.com).

From Superhydrophobic to Super-Slippery Surfaces (09 March, 2018)

Speaker: Professor Glen McHale

On a wet day we need coats to keep dry, windscreen wipers to see and reservoirs to collect water and keep us alive. Our cars need oil to lubricate their engines, our ships need hulls that reduce drag and our planes need wings that limit ice formation. Nature has learnt to control water in a myriad of ways. The Lotus leaf cleanses itself of dust when it rains, a beetle in the desert collects drinking water from an early morning fog and some spiders walk on water. In all of these effects the unifying scientific principle is the control of the wettability of materials, often through the use of micro- and nano-scale topography to enhance the effect of surface chemistry. In this seminar I will outline recent examples of our research on smart surface-fluid interactions, including drag reduction and flow due to surface texture,1-4 interface localized liquid dielectrophoresis to create superspreading and dewetting,5-7 lubricant infused surfaces to remove pinning,8-10 and the Leidenfrost effect using turbine-like surfaces to create new types of heat engines and microfluidics.11-12

References

1.    Busse, A. et al. Change in drag, apparent slip and optimum air layer thickness for laminar flow over an idealised superhydrophobic surface. J. Fluid Mech. 727, 488–508 (2013).

2.    Brennan, J. C. et al. Flexible conformable hydrophobized surfaces for turbulent flow drag reduction. Sci. Reports 5, 10267 (2015).

3.    McHale, G. in Non-wettable Surfaces Theory, Prep. Appl. (Ras, R. & Marmur, A.) (RSC, 2016).

4.    Li, J. et al., Topological liquid diode. Science Advances 3, eaao3530 (2017).

5.    Brown, C.V. et al. Voltage-programmable liquid optical interface. Nat. Photonics 3, 403–405 (2009).

6.    McHale, G. et al. Voltage-induced spreading and superspreading of liquids. Nat. Commun. 4, 1605 (2013).

7.    Edwards, A.M.J. et al. Not spreading in reverse: The dewetting of a liquid film into a single droplet. Sci. Adv. 2, e1600183 (2016).

8.    Ruiz-Gutiérrez, É. et al., Energy invariance in capillary systems. Phys. Rev. Lett. 118, art. 218003 (2017).

9.    Guan, J.H. et al., Drop transport and positioning on lubricant-impregnated surfaces. Soft Matter 12, 3404-3410 (2017).

10. Luo, J.T. et al., Slippery liquid-infused porous surfaces and droplet transportation by surface acoustic waves. Phys. Rev. Appl. 7, 014017 (2017).

11. Wells, G. G. et al., A sublimation heat engine. Nat. Commun. 6, 6390 (2015).

12. Dodd, L.E. et al., Low friction droplet transportation on a substrate with a selective Leidenfrost effect. ACS Appl. Mater. Interf. 8 22658–22663 (2016).

Acknowledgements The financial support of the UK Engineering & Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) and Reece Innovation ltd is gratefully acknowledged. Many collaborators at Durham, Edinburgh, Nottingham Trent and Northumbria Universities were instrumental in the work described.

 

Biography. Glen McHale is a theoretical and experimental applied and materials physicist. At Northumbria University, he combines leading the Smart Materials & Surfaces laboratory with his role as Pro Vice-Chancellor for the Faculty of Engineering & Environment. His research considers the interaction of liquids with surfaces and has a particular focus on the use of surface texture/structure via microfabrication and materials methods, and the use of electric fields to control the wetting properties of surfaces. His work includes novel superhydrophobic surfaces, surfaces with drag reducing and slippery properties, and electrowetting/dielectrophoresis to control the wetting of surfaces. Glen has written invited “News and Views”, highlight, emerging area and review articles for a wide range of journals covering superhydrophobicity, dynamic wetting, liquid marbles and drag reduction. He has published over 170 refereed journal papers. He is a Fellow of the Institute of Physics, a Fellow of the RSA, a Senior Member of the IEEE, a member of the UK Engineering & Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) Peer Review College, and he was a panel member for the "Electrical and Electronic Engineering, Metallurgy and Materials" unit of the last UK-wide national assessment of research (REF2014). Along with colleagues at Northumbria, Nottingham Trent and Oxford Universities, he has developed a public understanding of science exhibition, "Natures Raincoats" (www.naturesraincoats.com).

From Superhydrophobic to Super-Slippery Surfaces (09 March, 2018)

Speaker: Professor Glen McHale

On a wet day we need coats to keep dry, windscreen wipers to see and reservoirs to collect water and keep us alive. Our cars need oil to lubricate their engines, our ships need hulls that reduce drag and our planes need wings that limit ice formation. Nature has learnt to control water in a myriad of ways. The Lotus leaf cleanses itself of dust when it rains, a beetle in the desert collects drinking water from an early morning fog and some spiders walk on water. In all of these effects the unifying scientific principle is the control of the wettability of materials, often through the use of micro- and nano-scale topography to enhance the effect of surface chemistry. In this seminar I will outline recent examples of our research on smart surface-fluid interactions, including drag reduction and flow due to surface texture,1-4 interface localized liquid dielectrophoresis to create superspreading and dewetting,5-7 lubricant infused surfaces to remove pinning,8-10 and the Leidenfrost effect using turbine-like surfaces to create new types of heat engines and microfluidics.11-12

References

1.    Busse, A. et al. Change in drag, apparent slip and optimum air layer thickness for laminar flow over an idealised superhydrophobic surface. J. Fluid Mech. 727, 488–508 (2013).

2.    Brennan, J. C. et al. Flexible conformable hydrophobized surfaces for turbulent flow drag reduction. Sci. Reports 5, 10267 (2015).

3.    McHale, G. in Non-wettable Surfaces Theory, Prep. Appl. (Ras, R. & Marmur, A.) (RSC, 2016).

4.    Li, J. et al., Topological liquid diode. Science Advances 3, eaao3530 (2017).

5.    Brown, C.V. et al. Voltage-programmable liquid optical interface. Nat. Photonics 3, 403–405 (2009).

6.    McHale, G. et al. Voltage-induced spreading and superspreading of liquids. Nat. Commun. 4, 1605 (2013).

7.    Edwards, A.M.J. et al. Not spreading in reverse: The dewetting of a liquid film into a single droplet. Sci. Adv. 2, e1600183 (2016).

8.    Ruiz-Gutiérrez, É. et al., Energy invariance in capillary systems. Phys. Rev. Lett. 118, art. 218003 (2017).

9.    Guan, J.H. et al., Drop transport and positioning on lubricant-impregnated surfaces. Soft Matter 12, 3404-3410 (2017).

10. Luo, J.T. et al., Slippery liquid-infused porous surfaces and droplet transportation by surface acoustic waves. Phys. Rev. Appl. 7, 014017 (2017).

11. Wells, G. G. et al., A sublimation heat engine. Nat. Commun. 6, 6390 (2015).

12. Dodd, L.E. et al., Low friction droplet transportation on a substrate with a selective Leidenfrost effect. ACS Appl. Mater. Interf. 8 22658–22663 (2016).

Acknowledgements The financial support of the UK Engineering & Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) and Reece Innovation ltd is gratefully acknowledged. Many collaborators at Durham, Edinburgh, Nottingham Trent and Northumbria Universities were instrumental in the work described.

 

Biography. Glen McHale is a theoretical and experimental applied and materials physicist. At Northumbria University, he combines leading the Smart Materials & Surfaces laboratory with his role as Pro Vice-Chancellor for the Faculty of Engineering & Environment. His research considers the interaction of liquids with surfaces and has a particular focus on the use of surface texture/structure via microfabrication and materials methods, and the use of electric fields to control the wetting properties of surfaces. His work includes novel superhydrophobic surfaces, surfaces with drag reducing and slippery properties, and electrowetting/dielectrophoresis to control the wetting of surfaces. Glen has written invited “News and Views”, highlight, emerging area and review articles for a wide range of journals covering superhydrophobicity, dynamic wetting, liquid marbles and drag reduction. He has published over 170 refereed journal papers. He is a Fellow of the Institute of Physics, a Fellow of the RSA, a Senior Member of the IEEE, a member of the UK Engineering & Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) Peer Review College, and he was a panel member for the "Electrical and Electronic Engineering, Metallurgy and Materials" unit of the last UK-wide national assessment of research (REF2014). Along with colleagues at Northumbria, Nottingham Trent and Oxford Universities, he has developed a public understanding of science exhibition, "Natures Raincoats" (www.naturesraincoats.com).

Infection diagnosis in the clinical settings in India (29 January, 2018)

Speaker: Professor Neelam Taneja

Professor Taneja Dr Taneja heads the Enteric Division at Dept. of Medical Microbiology at PGIMER, Chandigarh which is a tertiary care referral Institute in north India well known for postgraduate teaching, diagnostic services and research. As a clinical microbiologist at a 2000 bed tertiary care centre, she as the specialist in-charge provides diagnostic and other services in the field of diarrhea, food borne infections and urinary tract infections. The work entails isolation of all food and water borne pathogens including V. choleraeSalmonellaShigella,diarrhoeagenic E. coliAeromonas and Yersinia and monitoring the antimicrobial drug resistance in these pathogens. She holds an international patent for a putative shigella vaccine based on reverse vaccinology approach, which was filed through ICMR and is published on WIPO. She has published 125 peer-reviewed articles in esteemed journals such as Emerging Infectious Diseases and Journal of Antimicrobial Agents and Chemotherapy, Journal of Clinical microbiology. She has handled many extramural project grants from WHO, ICMR and DST.

Dr Taneja has various international honours including a WHO fellowship, a Pasteur Institute fellowship, International Development award for young woman scientist conferred by International society of infectious Diseases. She is the founder member and secretary of Society of South Asian Countries Society for Prevention of Healthcare Associated Infection.

Human hepatocytes as a tool for understanding the mechanisms of hepatotoxicity and the development of safer new drugs" (24 January, 2018)

Speaker: Prof Jose Vicente Castell-Ripoll,

Prof Castell-Ripoll is a pioneer in the development of human hepatic cellular models and its application to drug development (study of drug metabolism and hepatotoxicity), metabolomics applied to toxicity studies and hepatocyte transplantation, as well as studies on the differentiation and control of gene expression of human hepatocytes. He is Professor at the Faculty of Medicine of the University of Valencia where he holds the chair of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology since 1999. He also lectured at the Autonomous University of Madrid and at the University of Freiburg. His research training was at the Institute of Biosciences of CSIC in Madrid, ETH Institutt fur Molekularbiologie in Zurich and Max-Planck Institut fur Biophysikalische Chemie in Gottingen. He has served in the advisory board of several Pharma companies, EU- Framework Programs, international institutions and is co-founder of two biotech companies. He was Director of the La Fe Hospital Research Foundation for 14 years until 2016. He has promoted several succesful partnership programmes between clinical researchers, academics and industry partners, including setting up an innovative startup incubator in La Fe Hospital (Biopolo La Fe).

Membranes for dirty jobs: lithium extraction, isotope enrichment and extraction of water from highly saline liquid (14 December, 2017)

Speaker: Professor Tao He

Professor Dr. Tao He was educated as a Chemical Engineer from Sichuan University (B.E. 1994); Dr. He started his membrane research in Dalian Institute of Chemical Physics, Chinese Academy of Sciences (M.Sc. 1997), and Membrane Technology Group at University of Twente (Ph.D. 2001). Dr. He went to industry working in the RD department of X-Flow/Norit (NL) and Aquasource/Degremont (France) till 2006. In 2007 he joined Nanjing Tech University as a professor for membrane technology. In 2010, Dr. He moved to Shanghai Advanced Research Institute, Chinese Academy of Sciences (SARI-CAS) and founded Laboratory for Membrane Materials and Separation Technologies (2MST). He is also an adjunct professor of ShanghaiTech University (from 2013).

Dr. He is the recipient of 2017 Newton Advanced Fellowship (2017-2020), 2016 Leaders in Innovation (the 2nd price) from the Newton Fund, Royal Academy of Engineering, and 2016 Vice-Chancellor International Scholar Award (VISA), University of Wollongong. Professor He published more than 60 scientific papers, 10 book chapters, and 27 patents. He serves as Co-editor for Desalination and the subject editor for PSEP.

He is experienced in manufacturing hollow fiber membrane/modules and application of such membranes in wastewater reuse. The current research interests of his team include: interfacial interaction at the water/polymer/air interface, membrane distillation, forward osmosis, acid/solvent resistant membranes, membrane extraction for precious metals and isotope separation, high temperature solid battery barriers.

Talk by Professor Martin Schwartz (08 November, 2017)

Speaker: Professor Martin Schwartz

My lab studies fundamental mechanisms of mechanotransduction in the cardiovascular system and their roles in both normal physiology and disease. Our recent work has revealed novel biophysical aspects by which cells sense matrix stiffness, applied strains and fluid shear stress. We also have new results on how these mechanosensing pathways participate in vascular remodelling, atherosclerosis and cardiac fibrosis. I will present our new data that integrates molecular, cellular and animal studies.

Yale University

Additive Manufacturing of Metals for the Internet of Things (IoTs) (02 November, 2017)

Speaker: Prof Robert C. Roberts

The Internet of Things (IoT) is projected to create an unprecedented number of smart and connected systems, yielding a pervasive sensor and actuator network, able to interact with the real world. The diversity and complexity of these applications requires engineers to rethink their manufacturing strategies to enable rapid prototyping, lower cost, and allow customization of low-volume components that cannot be achieved using conventional mass manufacturing. Additive Manufacturing (AM), aka 3D printing, has the potential to meet this increasing demand for flexible personalized engineering, by enabling the direct manufacturing of complex components, directly from a digital design. In particular, the additive manufacturing of metals has great potential for IoT applications by enabling the fabrication of components with both useful electrical and mechanical properties. This talk highlights some developments in metal additive manufacturing technology using both inkjet-based deposition and selective laser sintering (SLS).  Inkjet additive manufacturing offers promise of low-cost microfabricated electronics, sensors and actuators on unconventional substrates by making use of organo-metallic nanoparticle based “inks” and thus requires a fundamentally different approach when compared to conventional microfabrication techniques. The process dependence on the electrical and mechanical characteristics of the resulting metal structures is explored for both Gold and Silver.  These insights are then applied to numerous applications including multilayer RF structures, microfluidic sensors, printed batteries, and strain gauges.  In contrast, Select Laser Sintering uses a laser to thermally fuse dry metal powder into solid structures. These metal structures then offer great potential not only as mechanical components, but also as sensors and actuators. Again, process parameter variation is shown to enable the modification of the electro-mechanical properties of the materials and is explored for 316L and 17-4PH Stainless Steel. SLS is then demonstrated for multiple applications including microwave horn antennas, and high-density 3D microelectrode arrays to highlight the exciting future of additive manufacturing for the Internet of Things. 

Ultrasound in Medicine and Biology (28 October, 2017)

Speaker: Chris Yang

Abstract: Medical ultrasounds are sound waves with frequencies above audible range. Clinically, 2- to 20-MHz ultrasounds are applied in imaging anatomical structure of the human body and measuring the blood velocities in arteries and veins by using the Doppler effect. By reconstructing the Doppler signal superimposing on the brightness-mode ultrasound imagine (B-mode), the venous and arterial angiography and neovascularisation can be imaged without the use of ionising radiation. The wall shear stress of the blood vessel derived from the velocity profile can be easily measured by using clinical ultrasound scanner. On the similar frequency range, surface acoustic waves are also introduced in actuating cellular particles within whole blood sample for separating target cells, such as circulating tumour cells (CTCs), which is the surrogate of cancer progression and the factor of cancer metastasis. The integration of the acoustic and microfluidic technique has shown the feasibility of manipulating CTCs for downstream characterisation by using microwave resonators.
 
Biography: Xin Yang is lecturer of Medical Engineering and director of Medical Ultrasound and Sensors Laboratory (MUSL) at the school of Engineering, Cardiff University, and adjunct professor at Lanzhou Jiaotong University, China. He studies Biomedical Engineering at Beijing Jiaotong University from 2001 – 2005. He was awarded the MSc in Medical Electronics & Physics in Queen Mary, University of London in 2006. He worked as the CEO and CTO for two years in Beijing BJ Device Ltd. He was awarded PhD in 2011 for work in Doppler ultrasound in quantifying neovascularisation. He was the British Heart Foundation (BHF) research fellow working at Doppler ultrasound phantoms and wall shear stress measurement at the Queen's Medical Research Institute, The University of Edinburgh. He started his current position in Cardiff University since 2013 and was awarded his EPSRC First Grant in 2016. He has published refereed journal papers on Doppler ultrasound and is principal author of 8 books in the subject of electronics and microcontrollers.

Ultrasound in Medicine and Biology (28 October, 2017)

Speaker: Chris Yang

Abstract: Medical ultrasounds are sound waves with frequencies above audible range. Clinically, 2- to 20-MHz ultrasounds are applied in imaging anatomical structure of the human body and measuring the blood velocities in arteries and veins by using the Doppler effect. By reconstructing the Doppler signal superimposing on the brightness-mode ultrasound imagine (B-mode), the venous and arterial angiography and neovascularisation can be imaged without the use of ionising radiation. The wall shear stress of the blood vessel derived from the velocity profile can be easily measured by using clinical ultrasound scanner. On the similar frequency range, surface acoustic waves are also introduced in actuating cellular particles within whole blood sample for separating target cells, such as circulating tumour cells (CTCs), which is the surrogate of cancer progression and the factor of cancer metastasis. The integration of the acoustic and microfluidic technique has shown the feasibility of manipulating CTCs for downstream characterisation by using microwave resonators.
 
Biography: Xin Yang is lecturer of Medical Engineering and director of Medical Ultrasound and Sensors Laboratory (MUSL) at the school of Engineering, Cardiff University, and adjunct professor at Lanzhou Jiaotong University, China. He studies Biomedical Engineering at Beijing Jiaotong University from 2001 – 2005. He was awarded the MSc in Medical Electronics & Physics in Queen Mary, University of London in 2006. He worked as the CEO and CTO for two years in Beijing BJ Device Ltd. He was awarded PhD in 2011 for work in Doppler ultrasound in quantifying neovascularisation. He was the British Heart Foundation (BHF) research fellow working at Doppler ultrasound phantoms and wall shear stress measurement at the Queen's Medical Research Institute, The University of Edinburgh. He started his current position in Cardiff University since 2013 and was awarded his EPSRC First Grant in 2016. He has published refereed journal papers on Doppler ultrasound and is principal author of 8 books in the subject of electronics and microcontrollers.

Microengineered Surfaces for Advanced Technologies (28 October, 2017)

Speaker: Dr Pola Goldberg Oppenheimer

Biography 

Dr Oppenheimer’s research interests lie in nano and submicron structure formation (please see the group website: Advanced Nano-Materials, Structures and Applications) at surfaces and in thin films, including pioneering the potential use of hierarchical electrohydrodynamically generated functional structures to develop novel polymer- based nano-detection devices. She brings detailed expertise in creating and aligning a wide range of nanostructures in polymers, carbon nanotube-based nanocomposites, crystalline materials and a synergistic interest in biomimetics, including the use of polymers with 10-nm morphologies as templates to create inorganic functional devices.

Over the past three years she has given five invited talks at major international conferences. Her publications include regular papers in leading journals such as Advanced Optical Materials, Advanced Functional Materials and Small. In 2012 she was awarded the Carl-Zeiss Prize in Engineering at the University of Cambridge. As a result of her research, several images were published as cover images including the Science Magazine of the University of Cambridge, the Carl-Zeiss Imaging Competition at the Department of Electrical Engineering and the 2012 annual reports of the University of Cambridge featuring her image named 'We all fall over sometimes' as a cover.

Event hosted by Professor Jon Cooper

Optimal input for low reliability assistive technology (19 October, 2017)

Speaker: John Williamson

Most devices used for human input are reliable, in the sense
that errors are small in proportion to the information which
passes through the interface channel. There are, however, a few
important and relevant human interface channels which have
both very low communication rates and very low reliability.
 
We present a practical and general method for
optimal human interaction using binary input devices having very
high noise levels where a reliable feedback channel is available. In
particular, we show efficient navigation and selection techniques are
viable even with a
binary channel (symmetric or asymmetric) where reliability
may be below 75%, with provably optimal performance.
This mechanism can automatically adapt to changing channel statistics
with no overhead, and does not need precise calibration. A range
of visualisations are used to implicitly code for these channels in
a way that it is transparent to users. We validate our results
through a considered process of evaluation from theoretical
analysis, automated simulation, live interaction simulators.

UESTC Design of an Ambulatory EEG amplifier and its future applications in rehabilitation (04 May, 2017)

Speaker: Tiejun Liu

Recently, computational neuroscience has become one of the most important disciplines in neuroscience to understand and to model neural activity. There are different ways to measure the activity of the brain, such as Electroencephalograph (EEG), Magnetoencephalogram (MEG) and functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging (fMRI). EEG has been an indispensable tool due to the advantages of high temporal resolution, easy setup and low cost. Inexpensive portable EEG solutions are increasingly being used for neurorehabilitation purposes.

In this presentation, I am going to address the most common weaknesses of the existing ambulatory EEG systems and explain our approach to minimize this problems in our novel EEG amplifier design. The quality of the EEG signal and the performance of the amplifiers have been tested and verified under different conditions in our Lab (University of Electronic Science and Technology of China). I will also describe future applications of this EEG amplifiers in rehabilitation and in Brain Computer Interface.

The amplifiers will be demonstrated following the presentation.