Research
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Research Areas
Medical Devices and Instrumentation

The focus of research in medical devices and instrumentation is to conceptualize, design, fabricate, and validate novel therapeutic and diagnostic tools. This includes a vast range of medical devices ranging from invasive, implantable devices for chemical, optical, and electrical interfacing, wearable patches for vital signs and health monitoring, and non-contact magnetic stimulation and imaging tools.

Researchers at the intersection of biomedical engineering and chemistry, materials, electrical engineering, and mechanical engineering use detailed computational models and laboratory experiments to analyze the interactions between medical devices and the human body at cellular, tissue, and organ scales. Research in this field also tackles challenges related to power, data transmission or on-board data handling. These efforts involve foundational, translational and clinical studies, and often require close interaction with regulatory agencies to enable the next generation of medical instruments.

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Cancer

Partial Wave Spectroscopic (PWS) sensing of chromatin structure before and after dexamethasone treatment

Research Topics

• super-resolution imaging • genome imaging • chromatin engineering • early cancer detection • chromatin protection therapy

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Cardiovascular

Credit: Implantable and Wearable Bioelectronic Device Networks for Cardiovascular Applications (Igor Efimov)

Research Topics

Arrhythmogenesis • heart rhythm disorders • implantable and wearable bioelectronic device networks

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Drug Discovery and Delivery

Credit: A set of Megamolecules mimicking Trastuzumab, the breast cancer antibody therapeutic (Milan Mrksich)

Research Topics

Megamolecules • antibody mimics • antibody-drug conjugates • PET imaging agents • super-resolution imaging • genome imaging, chromatin engineering • nanosensing, early cancer detection • drugs for epigenetic engineering • chromatin protection therapy

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Rehabilitation

Credit: Powered Knee-Ankle Prosthesis Leg (Matt Tresch)

Research Topics

Prosthetics • brain machine interface • bionic medicine • robotic rehabilitation

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Vision and Sensory Systems

Credit: Blizzard™  spectrometer designed by Northwestern BME and Opticent Health (a BME start-up company) to enable high-quality visible-light optical coherence tomography of the human eyes (Hao Zhang)

Research Topics

Optical coherence tomography • scanning laser ophthalmoscopy • contact lens

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Global Health

Credit: CIGHT COVID-19 Tester (Matt Glucksberg)

Research Topics

Diagnostics • low-cost, resource-poor environments • neonatal technologies • HIV • tuberculosis training and workshops • Africa

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