An exciting time for engineering at CU Denver

Dean Martin Dunn presented the college’s new strategic vision and name at a faculty/staff celebration on February 28, setting the trajectory for the exciting things to come for the newly renamed College of Engineering, Design and Computing.

On March 6, the college and Office of Advancement kicked off the fundraising campaign for the new building at an intimate event held at CU Denver CityCenter.

All in all, it’s a very exciting time for the college, and these advancements were covered in the Denver Post and CU Denver Today. Both pieces paint an accurate picture of the exciting things to come.

Read the Denver Post story.
Read the CU Denver Today story.

Bioengineering is top-ranked biomedical engineering program in Colorado; moves up by 10 in national rankings

The bioengineering graduate program moved up 10 spots in the U.S. News and World Report’s 2020 Best Graduate Schools Report, published March 12. The program is now ranked number 69 in the country, and is the top-ranked biomedical program in Colorado.

Kudos to Dr. Robin Shandas, founding chair and professor, and his team of faculty and staff for this achievement. The bioengineering program has gained national recognition in less than 10 years of its establishment, which speaks volumes to the quality of bioengineering research and teaching taking place at CU Denver and the CU Anschutz Medical Campus.

Read the CU Denver Today story about all CU Denver rankings.

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JDRF Fellowship awarded to Farnsworth

farnsworth_headshotDr. Nikki Farnsworth, a Research Instructor working in the lab of Dr. Richard Benninger, was recently awarded a Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation Advanced-Postdoctoral Fellowship to study novel mechanisms of pancreatic β-cell death and to exploit these mechanisms to protect against the onset and progression of type 1 diabetes (T1D).

The goals of Dr. Farnsworth’s project are to determine the role of protein kinase C delta in regulating inflammation-mediated β-cell death and to determine the contributions of altered islet interactions with the extracellular matrix to β-cell death in T1D. This study will identify novel mechanisms of β-cell death during the onset of T1D using quantitative live cell imaging and a biomimetic 3D scaffold and will determine if modulation of these novel signaling mechanisms can protect against the onset of T1D.

Kravets receives JDRF postdoc fellowship award

kravets_photoDr. Vira Kravets, a Postdoctoral Fellow in Dr. Richard Benninger’s lab was recently awarded the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation Postdoctoral Fellowship: an award for promising scientists entering their professional career in the type 1 diabetes research field. The fellowship will support understanding heterogeneity of insulin-producing beta cells and their calcium response to glucose. In collaboration with the University of Miami Dr. Kravets will study alternations in beta cell subpopulations of the encapsulated islets for transplantation therapy. One of the potential outcomes of this collaboration is improvement of transplantation of stem-cell-derived islets.

Women as Innovators seminar – hosted by the Department of Bioengineering Feb. 8

The Department of Bioengineering is excited to announce that we are hosting a one day seminar on February 8, 2019, Women as Innovators: Creating Success in the Workplace. 

Keynote and plenary speakers include Dr. Dorothy Horrell, Dr. Brenda Allen, Dr. Sonia Flores, Dr. Chelsea Magin, Dr. Cristin Welle, Sheri Smith, Annelise Loevlie, and many others including physicians, faculty, CEOs and engineers from Medtronic, Biosense Webster, Boulder Biomed, Terumo BCT, and 3D systems.

 All are invited to attend, however you must register here and space is limited.  Registration fees, $10 per person for early registrants, will be raffled off at the end of the event so get your friends to come too!

View the flyer for a schedule and additional information.

Jacot’s research highlighted by Children’s Hospital Colorado Foundation, NSF Science Nation

Bioengineering associate professor Jeffrey Jacot’s research in regenerative medicine and his work with the Children’s Colorado Heart Institute was recently featured by the Children’s Hospital Colorado Foundation. Jacot and other Children’s Colorado physician-scientists are on the brink of new breakthroughs in regenerative medicine that could radically change the way we repair congenital heart defects. This promising area of research seeks to repair or replace damaged tissue with living, functional cells.

Read the Children’s Colorado story here.

Watch the NSF video here.

Cecilia Clark takes 3rd place in campus wide Three Minute Thesis Competition

Clark-HeadshotNiki Clark is a PhD student in Dr. Bodine’s Socially Assistive Robotics lab. She received her undergraduate degree in Mechanical Engineering with a minor in Biology, and she now works on developing a clinical augmentation tool for young children with complex cerebral palsy. Her current focus is on applying machine learning techniques to allow the robot to recognize each child’s movements, with an emphasis on behavior-based control to ensure the robot mimics movements that clinicians would make during therapeutic interaction. This work has been a collaboration across multiple disciplines that include Bioengineering, Computer Science, Early Childhood Education, and Industrial Design.

VeDepo receives AHA postdoctoral grant

VedepoDr. Mitchell VeDepo, a Postdoctoral Fellow of Bioengineering at the University of Colorado Denver, was recently awarded a postdoctoral grant by the American Heart Association (AHA). This award will help propel Dr. VeDepo’s project on the recellularization mechanisms for heart valve tissue engineering.

Valvular heart disease remains a significant cause of morbidity world wide and there is currently no ideal valve replacement. Dr. VeDepo’s project will help ‘build’ an ideal heart valve replacement through heart valve tissue engineering. This study will investigate the recruitment of autologous circulating cells for repopulating decellularized heart valve scaffolds using signaling chemokines and a novel bioreactor system. The results of this study will elucidate the recruitment of circulating cells and may lead to enhanced in situ recellularization of tissue engineered heart valves.