Biosystems & Bioengineering

Advancing technology that improves human health — and saves lives.


Biosystems and bioengineering are major areas of research for our department. This work is of critical importance to human health. Our faculty are using their expertise in bio heat and mass transfer, biomechanics, design, and tissue engineering to solve problems that are important to medicine. We are working on the surgical reconstruction of ligaments; the kinematics and dynamics of joints; control systems for orthoses and protheses; computer-aided diagnostics; biotransport techniques to preserve tissues and cells and to treat diseased tissue; new medical devices for diagnosing and treating cancer and cardiovascular, ocular, urologic diseases; and artificial arteries, coronea and other tissues for eventual transplantation and use in the body. The proximity of the University’s medical school and the presence of more than 500 medical device companies in the Twin Cities area makes this an especially vibrant home for this research.

This research area has three categories:

  1. Cryobiology and bioheat transfer: the study of thermophysical and biological changes within biomaterials during thermal manipulations with applications in cryopreservation.
  2. Neural device engineering/study and modeling of neurophysiological processes: engineering novel neurotechnologies with applications in both basic science and translation
  3. Medical devices and robotics: engineering wearable devices, biosensors, and robotics for surgery and human augmentation.

This technical area is also home to faculty that lead several inter-collegiate research centers, that have key links with research in the UMN Medical School. This includes the Medical Devices Center (MDC) directed by Dr. Art Erdman; the Institute for Engineering and Medical, headed by Dr. John Bischof; and the Biopreservation Core Resource (BioCoR) established by Dr. Allison Hubel. Dr. Kowaleski is heading the Neurorobotics Consortium. Dr. Kodandaramaiah has recently established and co-directs the Neural Imaging Core as a part of the UMN Center for Addiction Research.

Labs

BioCoR - Biopreservation Core Resource

Bioencapsulation and Biostabilization Laboratories

Bioheat and Mass Transfer Laboratory

Biosensing and Biorobotics Laboratory

Human/Machine Design Laboratory

Medical Devices Center

Medical Robotics and Devices Lab