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Crossing Elmwood: Hajim School/Med Center collaborations

dalecki_hockingTwo years ago, Jiebo Luo, Professor of Computer Science, and Yousef Khalifa, Associate Professor of Ophthalmology, had never met, and didn't know anything about each other.

"But one day Yousef called me up and said he'd like to talk to me because he found out on my home page that I work on computer vision, and in particular video analysis," Luo related at a recent Crossing Elmwood seminar series presentation. The series, sponsored by the Clinical and Translational Science Institute, highlights research collaborations between River Campus and Medical Center investigators.

"Given the olive branch, I grabbed it," Luo related.

"I crossed Elmwood."

The result is a collaborative research project to develop computerized, automatic analysis systems that can "look" at videos of residents performing cataract surgery and "grade" them in a more timely, objective fashion. (Read more . . .)

    This presentation, and several others in the series, have illustrated the unique opportunities for Hajim School faculty and their students to embark on multidisciplinary research projects that could lead to dramatic improvements in health care -- especially given that "crossing Elmwood" from the Hajim School to the University's world-class Medical Center involves no more than a five-minute walk.

Previous presentations have also included the collaboration of Danielle Benoit, Assistant Professor of Biomedical Engineering, with Stephen Dewhurst, Professor of Microbiology and Immunology, and Catherine Ovid, Associate Professor of Biomedical Genetics, on a project to bind noninterfering RNA to polymer nanoparticles to protect salivary glands from radiation damage. (Read more . . . )

During another presentation, Diane Dalecki, Professor of Biomedical Engineering and Director of the Rochester Center for Biomedical Ultrasound -- who works in Goergen Hall -- described her ongoing collaboration with Denise Hocking, Associate Professor of Pharmacology and Physiology, who also has an appointment in Biomedical Engineering and works at the Medical Center. They're exploring the use of ultrasound to enhance tissue engineering. (The image above from their project shows ultrasound-fabricated vascular networks formed in three-dimensional collagen hydrogels.)

The collaboration, Dalecki noted, has not only produced some exciting research, but provided a"really wonderful multidisciplinary environment for training our graduate students in our labs."

Four of the remaining five presentations in the series will involve Hajim faculty and their Medical Center collaborators, including:

  • March 18: Wayne Knox, Professor of Optics, of Physics and the Center for Visual Science, and Krystel Huxlin, Professor of Ophthalmology, of Neurobiology & Anatomy, of Brain & Cognitive Sciences and the Center for Visual Science, discussing "Progress toward noninvasive visual correction."
  • March 25: Anne Luebke, Associate Professor of Biomedical Engineering, of Neurobiology & Anatomy, and the Center for Navigation and Communication Sciences, and Loisa Bennetto, Chair and Associate Professor in the Department of Clinical & Social Sciences in Psychology, on "Listening through noise: Search for Autism biomarkers."
  • April 1: Richard Waugh, Chair and Professor of Biomedical Engineering, Professor of Biochemistry & Biophysics, of Pharmacology & Physiology, and of the Rochester Center for Biomedical Ultrasound, and James Palis, Professor of Hematology and Oncology in the Department of Pediatrics, on "When erythrocyte biology and mechanics collide."
  • April 8: James Allen, Professor of Computer Science, and Hyekrun Rhee, Associate Professor in the School of Nursing, on "Mobile phone-based asthma self-management aid for adolescents."

All of the lectures will take place in the Helen Wood Hall Auditorium (1W-304), from 12:15 pm to 1:15 pm.

Ryan Trombetta is going to Berlin. The biomedical engineering PhD student in Prof. Hani Awad’s lab took first place at the University’s first annual Falling Walls competition recently, earning him an all-expenses paid trip to the November international conference of the same name.

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