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BME Faculty Opening - Assistant Professor

Sign up for graduate recruitment events

Thinking about joining BME? Learn more about our programs, meet with faculty members, and talk to current students

Information webinar

This 1-hour information webinar session will provide with an overview of research and professional Biomedical Engineering programs.

Research lab match-making

On January 14, 2022, the Institute of Biomedical Engineering (BME) will be hosting a virtual event, where prospective students can meet 1 on 1 with our core and cross-appointed faculty members. Think of it as professional match-making for graduate positions.

Graduate research days

On February 24-25, 2022, the Faculty of Applied Science and Engineering (FASE) will be hosting a virtual event, where prospective students learn about our programs and chat with our MASc and PhD students.

News and stories

Read the latest news, research, and achievements made by the BME community

Portrait of Molly Shoichet

Medicine by Design announces two new Pivotal Experiment Fund projects

January 17, 2022 | University of Toronto (U of T) professors Shana Kelley, Leslie Dan Faculty of Pharmacy, and Molly Shoichet, Institute of Biomedical Engineering, will be supported by Medicine by Design’s Pivotal Experiment Fund to spin-off aspects of their research into an early-stage product concept or venture.

Zebra mussels could point the way toward non-stick surfaces and medical adhesives

January 13, 2022 | A water tank full of coin-sized invertebrates may not be the first thing you’d expect to see in a materials science and engineering research lab.

Mending the Gap: Professor Molly Shoichet joins multidisciplinary team working to develop new treatments for spinal cord injuries

January 12, 2022 | Spinal cord injuries can be devastating to those who experience them. Currently, almost no options are available to reverse the effects, which can include paralysis, chronic pain and loss of bladder control. But an international team of researchers — including University Professor Molly Shoichet (ChemE, BME, Donnelly) — hopes to change that.

Events, talks, and bulletin board

Stay informed about events hosted by BME and our affiliated organizations

Feb
2
Wed
Yi-Chin Eugene Hwang and BME UofT
Feb 2 @ 12:00 pm – 12:30 pm
Event Name: Graduate Seminar Series: Clinical Stream Graduate Seminar Series for the Institute of Biomedical Engineering (BME). This day is for clinical stream presenters. Presentation Title: Reducing convolutional neural network architectures for selective peripheral nerve recording on implantable devices Abstract: Background: Closed-loop control of functional electrical stimulation involves using recorded nerve signals to make decisions regarding nerve stimulation in real-time. Surgically implanted devices that can implement this strategy have significant potential to restore natural movement after paralysis and improve the quality of life of individuals living with spinal cord injury. Discriminating between recorded signals from different neural pathways can provide information about the body’s state and external inputs, which can then be used to decide on the most appropriate form of stimulation to deliver. Our previous work demonstrated the use of a convolutional neural network (CNN), ESCAPE-NET, to discriminate spatiotemporal signatures produced by different neural pathways. Despite state-of-the-art performance, this approach required too much data storage, power and computation time for implementation on hardware that is small enough to be surgically implanted in patients and fast enough for real-time decision making. Objective: This study aimed to minimize resource consumption while maintaining performance accuracy for machine learning techniques that can distinguish between neural pathways in high-density multi-contact nerve cuff electrode recordings. Methods: Several CNN architectures were evaluated using a dataset of rat sciatic nerve recordings previously collected using 56-channel (7 x 8) spiral nerve cuff electrodes. The CNNs were trained to classify individual, natural compound action potentials (nCAPs) elicited by ankle dorsiflexion, plantarflexion or heel prick. Reduced-complexity CNN architectures have been explored and designed using techniques such as dropout and fully convolutional networks (FCN). Results: Reduced ESCAPE-NET using dropout was 16x smaller than the original architecture and operated with 2.4x fewer floating-point operations per second (FLOPS), performing with 80.6% accuracy compared to a baseline of 80.7%. Reduced ESCAPE-NET using FCNs was 420x smaller than the original and operated with 3.5x fewer FLOPS, performing with 77.8% accuracy compared to a baseline of 80.7%. Conclusion: These reduced versions of ESCAPE-NET require significantly fewer resources with minimal accuracy loss, and thus will be more easily incorporated into a surgically implantable device that performs closed-loop control of stimulation in real-time. Beyond the impact on people with paralyzed limbs and spinal cord injury, this selective peripheral nerve recording technology has applications in the control of prosthetic limbs and neuromodulation interventions for diseases such as chronic pain, diabetes, or incontinence. Supervisor Name: Dr. José Zariffa Year of Study: 2 Program of Study: MASc Zoom link: https://us02web.zoom.us/j/89610372821?pwd=azd4SCtYVWtreVovaGNPV1c2NGY2Zz09 Meeting ID: 896 1037 2821 Password: 483329 Powered by Calendly.com
Graduate Student Seminar – Meng-Fen Tsai – Graduate Seminar Series: Clinical Stream
Feb 2 @ 12:30 pm – 1:00 pm

Graduate Seminar Series: Clinical Stream

Graduate Seminar Series for the Institute of Biomedical Engineering (BME). This day is for clinical stream presenters.

Presentation Title: Monitoring Functional Hand Use of Stroke Survivors at Home Using Egocentric Video

Abstract:
Stroke survivors experience a significant impact on their quality of life after the onset of stroke. Upper limb function is an important determinant of independence after injury. Previous studies reveal that current hand function assessments, administered predominantly in a clinical setting, are not necessarily indicative of how stroke survivors truly use their hands in activities of daily living in their home environment. Wearable devices based on accelerometers have been proposed to capture daily upper limb use after stroke, but accelerometers do not document what tasks were performed, describe hand function, or reveal the performance of affected and unaffected hands during activities of daily living (ADLs). In this study, we will explore the use of egocentric cameras to record the daily activities of stroke survivors at home. Through automated analysis of the recorded videos, we can uniquely access information about the amount of functional hand use and the reliance on the affected and unaffected hands in bimanual ADLs.
In previous work, a machine learning-based algorithm was trained to identify hand-object interactions of individuals with cervical spinal cord injury, with bilateral hand impairment, and had promising results. In this study, we will apply similar and refined versions of this approach to data from 25 stroke survivors with unilateral hand impairments, collected both in a home simulation laboratory and in the homes of study participants. We will additionally extend the algorithms to classify the roles of hands of stroke survivors in ADLs to reveal the contribution of the affected hand. The output from our algorithm will be compared to clinical outcome measures to establish convergent validity. Furthermore, we will report the user experience with the egocentric camera of the participants after stroke.
This is the first study to monitor the hand use of stroke survivors at home via egocentric video, providing novel insights into their performance of upper limb ADLs. We expect that the work will have applications in quantifying the true impact of rehabilitation interventions, in stroke survivors as well as a wide variety of clinical populations suffering from hand function impairments.

Supervisor Name: Jose Zariffa

Year of Study: 4

Program of Study: PhD

Zoom link: https://us02web.zoom.us/j/89610372821?pwd=azd4SCtYVWtreVovaGNPV1c2NGY2Zz09

Meeting ID: 896 1037 2821

Password: 483329

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Feb
3
Thu
Graduate Seminar Series: Clinical Stream – Zhiling Zou
Feb 3 @ 12:00 pm – 12:30 pm

Graduate Seminar Series: Clinical Stream

Graduate Seminar Series for the Institute of Biomedical Engineering (BME). This day is for clinical stream presenters.

If you would like to invite your Principal Investigator, please add their email via the ‘Add Guest’ button and they will also be notified of your presentation.

Presentation Title: Concentric Tube Robot Planning for Epilepsy with 3D Slicer

Abstract: To be added later.

Supervisor Name: James Drake, Jessica Burgner-Kahrs

Year of Study: 2

Program of Study: MASc

Zoom link: https://us02web.zoom.us/j/89610372821?pwd=azd4SCtYVWtreVovaGNPV1c2NGY2Zz09

Meeting ID: 896 1037 2821

Password: 483329

Reschedule Reason: Hi Zhiling,
As per my previous email to you, I am moving your presentation slot to February 3. I am doing this because the department planned to host a Student Town Hall meeting during your previous booking on January 26. Please contact me if this date of February 3 does not work for your schedule and we will find a different moment for you to present!

Thank you!
Best,
Vera – vera.pieters@mail.utoronto.ca

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Feb
8
Tue
Seminar Series- Milica Radisic @ Online
Feb 8 @ 12:00 pm – 1:00 pm
Milica Radisic

Title: Advances in Organ-on-a-Chip Engineering

Presenter: Milica Radisic

Host: N/A

Date: February 8, 2022

Time: 12:00pm – 1:00pm

Meeting Link: https://us02web.zoom.us/j/83703247484?pwd=YmlCVUFpUEMyZFFtUm5Jbk5TYVlTQT09

 

Abstract:

Recent advances in human pluripotent stem cell (hPSC) biology enable derivation of essentially any cell type in the human body, and development of three-dimensional (3D) tissue models for drug discovery, safety testing, disease modelling and regenerative medicine applications. However, limitations related to cell maturation, vascularization, cellular fidelity and inter-organ communication still remain. Relying on an engineering approach, microfluidics and microfabrication techniques our laboratory has developed new technologies aimed at overcoming them.

Since native heart tissue is unable to regenerate after injury, induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSC) represent a promising source for human cardiomyocytes. Here, biological wire (Biowire) technology will be described, developed to specifically enhance maturation levels of hPSC based cardiac tissues, by controlling tissue geometry and electrical field stimulation regime. I will describe new applications of the Biowire technology in engineering a specifically atrial and specifically ventricular cardiac tissues, safety testing of small molecule kinase inhibitors, potential new cancer drugs, modelling of left ventricular hypertrophy using patient derived cells and studying the effects of covid19 on the heart.

For probing of more complex physiological questions, dependent on the flow of culture media or blood, incorporation of vasculature is required, most commonly performed in organ-on-a-chip devices. Current organ-on-a-chip devices are limited by the presence of non-physiological materials such as glass and drug-absorbing PDMS as well as the necessity for specialized equipment such as vacuum lines and fluid pumps that inherently limit their throughput. An overview of two new technologies, AngioChip, inVADE and h-FIBER will be presented, that overcome the noted limitations and enable engineering of vascularized liver, heart and kidney as well as studies of cancer metastasis. These platforms enable facile operation and imaging in a set-up resembling a 96-well plate. Using polymer engineering, we were able to marry two seemingly opposing criteria in these platforms, permeability and mechanical stability, to engineer vasculature suitable for biological discovery and direct surgical anastomosis to the host vasculature.

Finally, I will discuss the importance of incorporating naturally fractal cues, in a platform termed miCRAFT, and designed to increase the fidelity of branching architecture of kidney podocytes.

 

Feb
9
Wed
Karly Franz and BME UofT
Feb 9 @ 12:00 pm – 12:30 pm

Event Name: Graduate Seminar Series: Clinical Stream

Graduate Seminar Series for the Institute of Biomedical Engineering (BME). This day is for clinical stream presenters.

Presentation Title: Measuring autistic traits in children using a collaborative tablet game

Abstract: TBA

Supervisor Name: Tom Chau

Year of Study: 4

Program of Study: PhD

Zoom link: https://us02web.zoom.us/j/89610372821?pwd=azd4SCtYVWtreVovaGNPV1c2NGY2Zz09

Meeting ID: 896 1037 2821

Password: 483329

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paul kumar and BME UofT
Feb 9 @ 12:30 pm – 1:00 pm

Event Name: Graduate Seminar Series: Clinical Stream

Graduate Seminar Series for the Institute of Biomedical Engineering (BME). This day is for clinical stream presenters.

Presentation Title: Design and Evaluation of a Hand Hygiene Prompting System for Private Residences

Abstract:
Hand hygiene is important for preventing the spread of infection, but it is often overlooked. Prompting systems designed for clinical environments have demonstrated the potential for improving hand hygiene rates, but there are no such systems for use in private residences.
The objective of this project is to design and evaluate a hand hygiene prompting system for use in the entrances of private residences to determine if the device can improve the likelihood of individuals washing their hands when entering.
A novel hand washing prompting system will be designed, fabricated and installed in the entrances of twenty households for a three-week period. Half of these household will be assigned to a control group and the other half will be assigned to an intervention group. No prompts will be provided to individuals in either group for the first week (the baseline period). In the second week (the prompting period), households in the intervention group will be prompted to wash their hands when the system detects an individual has entered the home (the control group will still not get any prompting). Prompting will be turned off again for the final week for both groups. A mixed ANOVA will be used to investigate the effects of time and group using the daily hand hygiene rate as the primary outcome measure. Additional ANOVA will be used to measure the effects of time on response time after initial prompt.

Supervisor Name: Tilak Dutta

Year of Study: 2

Program of Study: MASc

Zoom link: https://us02web.zoom.us/j/89610372821?pwd=azd4SCtYVWtreVovaGNPV1c2NGY2Zz09

Meeting ID: 896 1037 2821

Password: 483329

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Research streams

Innovation solutions for pressing healthcare challenges throughout the research and translational pipeline:

Clinical

BME’s clinical engineers design technologies, devices and strategies for people with chronic disease, traumatic injury, disabilities and mobility limitations to help them integrate more fully with their environment.

Cell & Tissue

Research that has the potential to change how we think about disease and aging is happening at BME. Regenerative medicine uses stem cells and biomaterials to repair, replace or regenerate damaged tissue, organ structures and function.

Molecular

BME researchers are advancing disease detection, customizing drug delivery and improving health-care outcomes with faster and more precise technologies and systems.

Research & professional degrees

Doctor of Philosophy

Research degree that exposes candidates to cutting-edge research in a laboratory

Master of Applied Science

Research degree that exposes candidates to cutting-edge research in a laboratory

Master of Engineering

Professional degree that exposes candidates to biomedical device design to commercialization

Listen to what our students have to say

We interviewed our students about what inspires them in research and extracurricular activities. Here are some of the faces of Biomedical Engineering

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