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Biomedical Engineering


Biomechanics and Mechanobiology

Biomechanics and Mechanobiology

The thrust of biomechanics and mechanobiology research combines basic principles of mechanical engineering with leading-edge molecular biology. From predicting real-time tissue stress and strain in the brain during neurosurgery to modeling the tension in the cell membrane during  division, biomechanics is used to predict non-linear, hyperelastic deformations that occur in cells, tissues, and organs during development, disease, and regeneration. Biomechanics is most often combined with high-resolution imaging modalities to quantify a functional change in a biological entity. Mechanobiology, on the other hand, primarily examines the molecular changes that occur in cells due to internal or external mechanical stimuli. These changes often involve elegant molecular machinery within the cell that alters cell shape, migration, and protein synthesis. Tools such as heart-on-a-chip devices are enabling precise quantification of the active and passive elastomechanical properties of cardiac tissue as well as electrical, calcium, and metabolomic responses of engineered cardiac tissue constructs to various stimulli. More recent work in mechanobiology is examining how mechanical inputs may alter the epigenetic regulation of cells that ultimately leads to disease.

Biomechanics and Mechanobiology

BME Faculty in Biomechanics and Mechanobiology:

Brett Byram - http://research.vuse.vanderbilt.edu/beamlab/

Craig L. Duvall- https://my.vanderbilt.edu/duvall/

Michael R. King- https://engineering.vanderbilt.edu/bio/michael-king

W. David Merryman- http://research.vuse.vanderbilt.edu/mechanobiology/dr._merryman.html

Michael I. Miga- http://www.tgt.vanderbilt.edu

Cynthia Reinhart-King- http://cellmechanics.org/

John Wikswo, Ph.D. -- https://www.vanderbilt.edu/viibre/wikswo.php