September/October 2015

Cover Story September/October 2015
Zombies Invade the Local Middle School
Turns out that studying zombie brains—among other age-appropriate topics—is a great way to engage and educate young students in the rudiments of brain science. It’s early morning and the fog is lifting over the mountains. Several middle school students have been... Read more
News and Notes September/October 2015
Pediatric Medical Device Innovators Win $100K in Awards
Two pediatric medical device innovators, AventaMed of Cork, Ireland and Prospiria, Inc. of Galveston, Texas, were selected from eight finalists to each receive a $50,000 award in the annual competition held by the Sheikh Zayed Institute for Pediatric Surgical Innovation at Children’s National Health... Read more
Society News September/October 2015
Healthy Aging Hackathon at IIT Kharagpur
The IEEE Student Branch, IEEE Engineering in Medicine and Biology Society (EMBS) Student Club and IEEE Signal Processing Society (SPS) Student Branch of the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Kharagpur along with the IEEE Kharagpur Section and IEEE Women in... Read more
Feature September/October 2015
Detection of Peritonitis in Patients on Peritoneal Dialysis at Home
Above, Figure 1 – Monitoring infection in peritoneal dialysis (PD) patients using a microchip. (A) Neutrophils, if present in waste dialysate, are captured on a PD microchip. Next, a shadow image of neutrophils is analyzed using automated software. (B) PD dialysate is... Read more
Entrepreneurs Corner September/October 2015
Bringing a Modular Biosignal Toolkit to Market
Ahmed Morsy, Deputy EIC of IEEE Pulse, talks with Gregory Stern of PLUX about the challenges and rewards of bringing a low-cost innovative product to market Poor signal to noise ratios, cross-talk, complex characteristics of body tissue, and signal variability are... Read more
Feature September/October 2015
Wake Up and Smell the oPhone
Standing in a cool dark room with 15 or so others, I close my eyes as the scent of fresh rain wafts across my face. The sound of droplets bouncing off leaves and smacking the pavement dances around my head.... Read more
Society News September/October 2015
IEEE and HKN – Perfect Together
Eta Kappa Nu (HKN) was founded in 1904 on the campus of the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign. The vision of the founders was to create an organization to both recognize the scholastic success of students, and to help electrical engineering... Read more
State of the Art September/October 2015
It Is Diversity of Experience That Counts
Isaac Asimov, the celebrated science fiction writer, once wrote an essay about creativity [1]. The truly creative mind, he wrote, is one that makes new connections between previously separated concepts. This new connection can only come from the mind of... Read more
Book Reviews September/October 2015
Work in Living Systems
Work Meets Life: Exploring the Integrative Study of Work in Living Systems Edited by Robert Levin, Simon Laughlin, Christina De La Rocha, and Alan Blackwell, MIT Press, 2011. ISBN: 978-0-262- 01412-0, xv + 250 pages, US$32. This book is a four-editor, ten-contributor... Read more
From the Editor September/October 2015
3-D Printed Pills: A New Age for Drug Delivery
A critical and often underappreciated step in the development of a new small-molecule drug is its manufacture into a pill for oral delivery. It is critical to maintain the biochemical potency that makes the drug a desirable therapeutic while simultaneously building... Read more
Feature September/October 2015
From Annoying to Appreciated
There’s a big difference between driving suggestions that come from a newly licensed, know-it-all teenager and those that come from a professional racecar driver who has spent years honing skills on the course. The first is one you just want... Read more
Feature September/October 2015
Rethinking Education
The Engineers in Scrubs (EiS) training program at the University of British Columbia, affiliated with the Faculty of Applied Science’s Biomedical Engineering Graduate (BMEG) Program, is not a typical graduate school course. Nor does it follow a traditional master’s course... Read more
Feature September/October 2015
New Imaging Technology May Help Doctors Diagnose Amyloidosis
One December day in 2013, Michael Rasmussen realized that just chewing his food made him tired. Short walks felt draining. At one point, he became so tired that he sat down and didn’t get up for three days. Rasmussen had... Read more
Feature September/October 2015
Breathing Easier
Mechanical ventilation (MV) is a primary therapy for intensive care unit (ICU) patients who have respiratory failure. Up to ~60% of all ICU patients require MV, and—because they are so ill—this patient group stays in the ICU 50–100% longer. They... Read more
Feature September/October 2015
Mind Your Composition
When asked about our weight, most of us can name a figure based on prior knowledge. And while stepping on a scale gives us the ability to know that exact number and track it routinely, it does not provide insights... Read more
Feature September/October 2015
Next-Gen Gene Synthesis Enables Large-Scale Engineering in Biological Systems
As scientists make strides toward the goal of developing a form of biological engineering that’s as predictive and reliable as chemical engineering is for chemistry, one technology component has become absolutely critical: gene synthesis. Gene synthesis is the process of building... Read more
Retrospectroscope September/October 2015
[accordion title=”Introducing the Authors”] When the stream is driven by a powerful pump, the running waters can take you to the unknowns of the mind. —Max E. Valentinuzzi Elisa Pérez was born in San Juan, Argentina, in 1978. She graduated as a bioengineer from... Read more
Senior Design September/October 2015
Opportunities to Identify Unmet Needs Outside of the Operating Room
The ability to identify unmet needs and new product opportunities is an important skill for biomedical engineering students planning a career in the medical device industry. Most biomedical engineering graduates will work in industry where many projects will not be... Read more
Feature September/October 2015
Throw Science to the Dogs
About an hour west of Boston, Tufts University’s bucolic North Grafton hospital is full of back surgery patients today. They lie quietly on their sides, lines of stitches along their spines. “Slipped discs,” explains oncologist Kristine Burgess, as she walks... Read more