Apr. 3, 2020
Professor O’Connell and a team of current ME students and ME/BioE alumni have been frantically working to develop a working solution for the expected ventilator shortage due to COVID-19. The team created an emergency ventilator by retrofitting a CPAP machine for people with sleep apnea. See more about the project in this video.

If you have a sleep apnea machine that you would like to register for donation to the cause, please go to Thank you!

Mar. 30, 2020
Congratulations to Bo Yang on his paper titled “Direct water content measurements using quantitative magnetic resonance imaging” being accepted for publication to the Journal of Magnetic Resonance Imaging! The paper provides a method for directly measuring water content in the intervertebral disc using quantitative MR imaging. Previous studies have used quantitative MR to correlate findings to biochemical composition, but due to differences in scanner parameters, direct measurements were not possible. We developed a method that would account for differences in scanners that may help broaden the use and application of quantitate MR imaging for diagnostics and patient-specific modeling.

Jan. 30, 2020
Congratulations to Minhao Zhou and Ben Werbner on their paper titled “Review on combined experimental and computational approaches for investigating annulus fibrosus mechanics” being accepted for publication to the Journal of Biomechanical Engineering! The review provides a look at how computational modeling and experimental design of annulus fibrous mechanical testing as evolved over the past 40 years.

Oct. 28, 2019
Recent work by former lab postdoc, Mona Eskandari, has been featured by the University of California – Riverside’s research homepage! Mona’s work has focused on evaluating spatial changes in airway mechanics and biochemical composition through the length of the airway. She completed her postdoctoral fellowship in the O’Connell lab and is now an Assistant Professor at UC Riverside.

Oct. 25, 2019
Congratulations to Arvin Soepriatna for his paper titled “3D Myocardial Strain Correlates with Murine Left Ventricular Remodeling Severity Post-Infarction” being accepted for publication to the Journal of the Royal Society Interface! Arvin is a graduate student in our collaborator’s lab, Professor Craig Goergen at Purdue. This work uses texture correlation methods to study three-dimensional strain maps in the left ventrical.

Oct. 21, 2019
Congratulations to Minhao Zhou for his paper titled “Multiscale composite model of fiber-reinforced tissues with direct representation of subtissue properties” being accepted for publication to the Biomechanics and Modeling in Mechanobiology! This work presents a novel approach to modeling three-dimensional stress distributions in fiber-reinforced composite structures.

Sept. 24, 2019
Congrats to Bo Yang on having his work accepted to publication in Acta Biomaterialia. His paper titled “Intervertebral disc swelling maintains strain homeostasis throughout the annulus fibrosus: A finite element analysis of healthy and degenerated discs.” developed a computational model based on tissue composition. The model was able to successfully observe morphological changes commonly observed with degeneration without modifying material problems. This work provides a new paradigm for developing computational models for the intervertebral discs that is driven by tissue composition rather than optimization and curve-fitting.

Aug. 26, 2019
Congratulations to Gabriel Lopez on passing his qualifying exam!

Aug. 2, 2019
Congratulations to Semih, Ben, and Minhao on having their collaborative work accepted for publication in JOR Spine. Their paper titled “Radial variation in biochemical composition of the bovine caudal intervertebral disc.” provides more detailed quantitative information regarding bovine biochemical properties that will help both experimental and computational researchers.

June 12, 2019
It is with great sadness that the lab learns about Colin Um’s death this past weekend. Colin was an undergraduate researcher in the lab from 2016-2018, performing computational studies of the disc with graduate student, Bo Yang. Colin had many interests outside of the classroom, including flying.

May 10, 2019
Bo Yang’s exit seminar was today, completing his requirements for the PhD Degree. Bo will start a full time position working at LinkedIn in San Francisco, CA in June. Congratulations Dr. Yang!!

May 8, 2019
Congratulations to Emily Lindberg on completing her Master’s report and presentation!

April 16, 2019
Congratulations to Ben Werbner on passing his qualifying exam!!

March 15, 2019
SB3C abstract submissions are out! The lab will represented in two podium presentations, including a newer collaboration with colleagues at Purdue University using ultrasound imaging for noninvasive deformation tracking. Professor O’Connell will also receive the YC Fung Young Investigator Award at the meeting.

Feb. 14, 2019
Congrats to Bo Yang on having his paper titled Relative Nucleus Pulposus Area and Position Alters Disc Joint Mechanics accepted for publication to the Journal of Biomechanical Engineering.

Jan. 10, 2019
Congrats to Minhao Zhou on passing his qualifying exam and advancing to PhD candidacy!