Biomedical Ultrasonics

Biomedical Figure being held by gloved hands
Our biomedical research is devoted to two primary aspects: studies of waves through highly-scattering media such as skull bone and studies related to the influence of ultrasound on cell growth and development.

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The human skull is a highly heterogeneous material that is know to attenuate ultrasound severely, an effect that limits potential imaging methods. We are studying the attenuation mechanisms and the role of microstructure on focal aberrations. Figures: example attenuation vs. frequency in skull; attenuation varies greatly with respect to position on the skull in the same person (0.5 MHz measurements; blue-red = 0-11 Np/cm)

Ultrasound can have a tremendous influence on cell growth, especially for cells such as chondrocytes that require mechanical stimulation. However, the mechanisms for these effects are largely unexplored. Figures: when ultrasound is used for excitation during growth cell proliferation is enhanced dramatically and cell morphology is positively enhanced.
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