Independent Study & Mentorship Program

I am honored that I could be part of the Frisco ISD Independent Study and Mentorship (ISM) program as a mentor.

FISD ISM is a Professional program meant for academically advanced students who go through a rigorous and competitive selection process before being accepted. Within this program students explore their desired field and research about a specific topic and display their knowledge through an original work and product.

Manogna’s potfolio

But let me start from the beginning. Last year in December, I was approached by Manogna Jonnalagadda, an 11th-grade student from Centennial High School in Frisco. She was asking if I was available for an interview, that she wanted to conduct as part of her ISM program to learn more about biomedical engineering. And sure enough, I agreed. During this interview, Manogna told me more about the ISM program and asked me to become her mentor, which I happily did.

Manogna was interested in spinal cord injury and ways to treat that. During her first part of the project (original work), she was doing research on spinal cord injuries and treatments, including spinal cord stimulation, and was creating an interactive website as a helpful guide. For the second part (final product), she was researching nerve conduit devices for nerve repair and was writing a review article to summarize her findings.

During the mentored phase, we had weekly meetings to plan her final product, discuss her findings, review her milestones, and talk about science and engineering. It was a blast for me to see how Manogna managed to accomplish her goals and how her final product came to life, and all this in the midst of a pandemic.

In March, Manogna came to UNT to see our labs and to make her first own polymer. That was our first and only in-person mentor meeting we had, and it was a lot of fun.

At the end of April was the “Final Presentation Night” at Centennial High School and Manogna was presenting her final product. She did an awesome job presenting her work and seemed like she never did anything else in her life. So professional and confident! I was beyond proud to see what she had accomplished and it was a great honor for me to be part of her journey. I would always do it again.

To learn more about this fantastic young woman and her research, please visit her online portfolio.

And here is a link to her final presentation.

TEDxUNT

The Univerity of North Texas will host an TEDxEvent:

I am beyond excited to share that I will present a part of our lab’s research at TEDxUNT! I will be speaking about the shape memory polymers that we are working on within our lab. Stay tuned for more details to come.

Topic of the TEDxUNT: Create the Change

When? Friday, Oct. 1, 2021
1-4 p.m

Where? UNT University Union, Denton, TX

Event registration will open in late August.

For more info, please visit the TEDxUNT website or the TEDx website.

UNT Seed Funding

We are happy to announce that the Ecker Lab has received seed funding from UNT for a collaborative research project together with Dr. Diana Berman (MTSE), Dr. Tom Cundari (CHEM), and Dr. Jeff Kelber (CHEM).

The project is entitled: “Metal Oxynitrides as Biocompatible Coatings for Medical Device Applications

The College of Engineering (CENG), College of Science (COS), and the and VPRI office are co-sponsoring targeted seed funding to establish teams of CENG-COS faculty to advance the collection of preliminary data in support of collaborative external research proposal submissions.

I am looking forward to a fruitful collaboration!

Congrats Lanre!

Lanre has received the UNT Honors College Summer Research Scholarship!

The Honors College is awarding a limited number of $4,000 Summer Research Scholarships to encourage participation, under the guidance of a faculty mentor, in varied research environments. To qualify, students are responsible for locating a professor who is willing to supervise either ongoing or new research this summer during the 10-week summer session (June 1-August 5). Then, such factors as GPA (minimum of 3.5), intensity and length of past research, existing outcomes—for example, exhibits, performances, co-authorship, or manuscripts under submission or preparation—will figure in our deliberations.

Congrats 2021 Spring Graduates!

Congratulations to all recent graduates from UNT Biomedical Engineering.

We also have some graduates from our lab:

Spring 2021 TAMS Graduates:

  • Karina Ambani (38:55)
  • Wilson Chao (41:06)
  • Alex Fang (42:55)

Spring 2021 Bachelor’s Degree in Biomedical Engineering:

  • Aima Ovai (1:17:42)

Congratulations to all of you! We are proud of your accomplishments and wish you all the best for your future endeavours! You will be missed.

Congrats Eric!

Eric has been accepted into the NSF Research Experience and Mentoring (REM) program! This 2021 Summer Research Experience is hosted by the Department of Physics here at UNT and comes with a stipend of $3,000.

The NSF Research Experience and Mentoring (REM) program supports hands-on research and ongoing mentorship in STEM fields (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics) for high school students, STEM teachers, undergraduate STEM students, faculty, and veterans.

Participants present their research findings and gain career insights at the annual Emerging Researchers National (ERN) Conference in STEM, hosted by NSF and AAAS. Mentors also attend this conference to support the REM participants and to share best practices in research/career mentoring with their colleagues

Ph.D. in Biomedical Engineering @UNT

Ph.D. in Biomedical Engineering has been approved by THECB!

The Department of Biomedical Engineering is proud to announce their latest degree offering – Ph.D. in Biomedical Engineering.  

Our new Ph.D. program offers two tracks: a traditional research track that will help you progress toward your academic career goal and a one-of-a-kind healthcare start-up management track in collaboration with the G. Brint Ryan College of Business. High-achieving students may apply with a bachelor’s or master’s degree in Biomedical Engineering.

For more information about the program and to learn how to register, please look at the BMEN Website.

New publication: Biocompatibility and thermoplastic formability of Pt-based metallic glasses

Big thanks to Shweta Jagdale and Dr. Golden Kumar from the Advanced Materials and Manufacturing Lab at UT Dallas for allowing us to be part of this collaborative effort on biocompatibility and thermoplastic formability of Pt-based metallic glasses!

Great work Qichan on the biocompatibility part of this research.

Abstract

Pt-based metallic glasses are considered for biomedical applications, but the presence of Ni poses the cytotoxicity concerns. Here, we compare the in vitro cell response and thermoplastic formability of Ni-free and Ni-containing Pt-based metallic glasses. Three glass forming compositions, Pt57.5Cu14.7Ni5.3P22.5, Pt58.7Cu20.3Ag1P20, and Pt57Cu23P20 were investigated. The Ni-free Pt-Cu-Ag-P metallic glass combines the best combination of biocompatibility and thermoplastic forming.

You want to read more? The full publication can be found here:

https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0167577X21005668

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