Materials for Biomedical Systems Day Brings Researchers Together to Engineer Better Medicines

Carnegie Mellon's Carmel Majidi presents at Materials for Biomedical Systems Day
Carnegie Mellon's Carmel Majidi presents at Materials for Biomedical Systems Day

One of the National Academy of Engineering’s Grand Challenges for Engineering is to engineer better medicines. To help address this challenge, W. Hong Yeo leads the Materials for Biomedical Systems research initiative for the Georgia Tech Institute for Materials (IMat). The goal of the initiative is to enhance human health via multidisciplinary materials research.

“The existing healthcare challenges are so complicated and demanding, so the collaboration between academia, industry, and national labs is imperative, and synergistic multidisciplinary research is required,” explained Yeo, who is also an associate professor and Woodruff Faculty Fellow in the Woodruff School of Mechanical Engineering and holds a courtesy appointment in the Coulter Department of Biomedical Engineering.

To further this initiative, Yeo and Emory University’s Young Jang organized the Materials for Biomedical Systems (MBS) Day at Georgia Tech. The workshop was held on March 30 at the Georgia Tech Global Learning Center and attracted researchers and industry representatives from a variety of disciplines.

The focus of the morning session was on soft materials and biomaterials for medical systems. It began with a talk on Organogels x EGaIn for Soft & Self-Healing Bioelectronics from Carmel Majidi, a professor of mechanical engineering at Carnegie Mellon University. Additional speakers in the morning session included ProgenaCare Global’s Allison Ramey-Ward, Seoul National University’s Young Bin Choy, and Korea Advanced Institute of Science & Technology’s Jae-Woong Jeong. The morning concluded with a panel discussion, regarding the translation of biomaterials technologies to system developments and commercialization, moderated by the University of Pittsburgh’s Youngjae Chun.

The afternoon session of the day was focused on stem cells and regenerative medicine. It began with a talk on Bioengineered Hydrogels for Regenerative Medicine from Andrés García, executive director of the Petit Institute for Bioengineering and Bioscience (IBB) and Regents’ Professor at Georgia Tech. Additional speakers in this session included Sung-Jin Park from Emory/Georgia Tech, William Hynes from Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, Ki Dong Park from Ajou University, Ho-Wook Jun from the University of Alabama at Birmingham, and Johnna Temenoff from Emory University/Georgia Tech. The session concluded with a panel discussion moderated by Johnny Lam from the Food and Drug Administration.

“I am so thankful for all of the participants, sponsors, and organizers who made such an amazing workshop that generated innovative ideas and new collaboration opportunities from across the field,” said Yeo. “We also discussed immediate commercialization paths and regulatory importance in developing biomaterials and medical systems. We will continue offering networking and research-sharing opportunities to facilitate knowledge exchange through this MBS initiative.”

After the workshop, multiple students participated in a poster contest to showcase their research in biomaterials and medical systems and network with attendees. MBS Day was co-sponsored by IMat and IBB.

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Laurie Haigh
Research Communications