May 6, 2022
The O’Connell lab enjoys an afternoon outside playing mini-golf! Congrats to Emily, Gabriel, Jonathan, Minhao, and Shiyin for being recognized by their undergraduate students for their mentorship and impact!
May 5, 2022
Congrats to Shiyin on passing her qualifying exam! This is her celebrating with her cat, Winchester Tater Tot!
Jan. 12, 2021
Congrats to Minhao Zhou on being selected as a finalist in the 2021 SB3C PhD Student Paper Competition!
In his paper, titled Novel multiscale structure-based model of the bovine caudal disc motion segment, Minhao presents a multi-scaled structure-based finite element model. The model is developed using known substissue level properties, like collagen fiber stiffness and proteoglycan content, to inform model parameters. The model was validated by comparing model-predicted joint-level behavior to data in the literature, with very good agreement. A new way to think about model development and validation!
Jan. 12, 2021
Congratulations to Jonathan McKinley on passing his qualifying exam and advancing to PhD candidacy! This is him enjoying his post-quals open water swim session!
Dec. 23, 2020
Congratulations to Minhao Zhou and Ben Werbner on their collaborative paper being accepted for publication in JMBBM. Their paper titled Assessment of Fiber Engagement to account for Geometry Dependent Mechanical Behavior: A Multiscale, Structure-Based Finite Element Study was accepted for an upcoming special issue on Cell and Tissue Biomechanics: A Correlation of Structure and Function. The image below highlights stress and strain distribution through a fiber-reinforced composite with a cross-ply fiber orientation, where peak strain locations matched failure in 3D printed composite analogs for the annulus fibrosus.
Dec. 16, 2020
Congratulations to Professor Grace O’Connell on her paper titled Spine Biomechanical Testing Methodologies: The Controversy of Consensus vs Scientific Evidence accepted for publication in JOR Spine. The review paper written with Professors Eric Ledet at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute and John Costi from Flinders University in Australia.
Sept. 19, 2020
Congrats to Semih Bezci on having his final paper from his PhD dissertation accepted for publication!! His paper titled Transient swelling behavior of the bovine caudal disc was accepted for publication in JMBBM. Experimental data shows changes in annular strains due to osmotic swelling and boundary conditions. The image below shows differences in radial and circumferential direction strain over time. Group 1 represents annulus fibrosus (AF) rings only, while Group 3 represents the entire disc with the nucleus pulposus (NP). Compressive strains in the inner AF, as seen in Group 1, is comparable to residual strain observations in other disc studies and cardiovascular vessels. Similar strains observed in the NP and AF in Group 3 specimens suggest that the internal pressure from the NP helps to maintain uniform strains throughout the disc.
Sept. 2, 2020
The lab welcomes Travis Mendoza to the lab. Travis will be co-advised with Professor Carisa Harris Adamson in Ergonomics. Learn more about Travis here.
Aug. 18, 2020
Congratulations to Jonathan McKinley on having his abstract titled Mechanically Active Microfluidic Device to Mimic Tensile Hoop-Strains in the Annulus Fibrosus accepted for oral presentation to the BMES conference in San Diego this October.
June 26, 2020
Congratulations to Gabriel López on being named an HSF Fellow!
April 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 VentilatorSOS.com. Thank you!
March 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.
January 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.
October 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.
October 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.
October 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.
September 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.
August 26, 2019
Congratulations to Gabriel Lopez on passing his qualifying exam!
August 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!