Innovation has a new home at Sears think[box]

New material system permits 3-D patterning to regulate stem cell behavior

Stem cells can be coaxed to grow into new bone or new cartilage better and faster when given the right molecular cues and room inside a water-loving gel, researchers at Case Western Reserve University show.
By creating a three-dimensional checkerboard—one with alternating highly connected and less connected spaces within the hydrogel—the team found adjusting the size of the micropattern could affect stem cell behaviors, such as proliferation and differentiation.
Inducing how and where stem cells grow—and into the right kind of cell in three dimensions—has proven a challenge to creating useful stem cell therapies. This technique holds promise for studying how physical, chemical and other influences affect cell behavior in three dimensions, and, ultimately, as a method to grow tissues for regenerative medicine applications.

Engineering student Alan Filer wins Fulbright scholarship to South Korea

Fourth-year engineering student Alan Filer has won a Fulbright scholarship to travel to South Korea in the fall. There, he’ll explore ways to make cheaper and cleaner alternatives to costly and toxic materials used in solar panels.
Filer, who will graduate with a bachelor’s degree in materials science and engineering in May, is focused on replacing rare earth metals and heavy metals with two highly proclaimed materials: graphene and quantum dots.
He’s challenged with developing manufacturing techniques that make the replacements equal to or better than the materials used now, and ensuring what works in the lab works in the real world.
The project is something he’s been working toward since arriving at Case Western Reserve University from his home in Colorado Springs.

Engineering student wins Best Student Paper award at international conference

Tina He, a PhD student in the Department of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science (EECS), advised by Philip Feng, PhD, won the Best Student Paper competition at the eighth IEEE International Conference on Nano/Micro Engineered & Molecular Systems (IEEE NEMS 2013). Her paper is titled “Dual-Gate Silicon Carbide Nanoelectromechanical Switches.” The evaluation criteria included originality, technical strength of the paper, presentation and question-answer performance at the conference.

CSE’s Abramson selected to participate in STEM leadership program at Drexel

Alexis Abramson, associate professor in the Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering, has been selected to join the 2013-14 class of fellows of Executive Leadership in Academic Technology and Engineering (ELATE at Drexel®).
She joins 18 other women faculty members in science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) fields from prestigious universities and colleges across the country as part of the program—a collaborative project of Drexel University and Drexel University College of Medicine that focuses on increasing personal and professional leadership effectiveness.

BME's Anant Madabhushi and team featured on cover of Medical Physics

Anant Madabhushi, associate professor of biomedical engineering and director of the newly created Center for Computational Imaging and Personalized Diagnostics, recently published an article titled “Spectral Embedding Based Active Contour (SEAC) for Lesion Segmentation on Breast Dynamic Contract Enhanced Magnetic Resonance Imaging.” The paper was the cover article for the March issue of Medical Physics.

Shannon Agner of Rutgers University was the lead author on the paper, while Madabhushi served as the senior author. Jun Xu, professor at Nanjing University of Information Science & Technology, was a co-author. Xu is a former research associate under Madabhushi.

Read the article.