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Wireless Microimplants for Deep Tissue Disease Monitoring and Treatment

Principal Investigator:

Dr. O’Sullivan, Department of Electrical Engineering

Project Summary:

Despite the explosive growth in the development of wearable and implantable sensors for monitoring health and personal wellness, there are currently no viable sensor technologies that can sense targets deep within the human body. Current sensors are limited to sensing cutaneous or shallow subcutaneous tissue volumes, have limited functionality, or are simply too large and obtrusive. This prevents their use in some of the most impactful areas of medicine including monitoring solid tumors, simultaneous deep brain sensing and stimulation, and monitoring diseases of the internal organs. The long-term goal of this project is to develop an extensible microimplant platform that can ultimately be placed anywhere in the human body and provide sensitivity to multiple biomolecular targets continuously and in real-time. This project entails sensor design, modeling (mechanical and functional), and prototyping of wireless microimplants using advanced manufacturing processes.

Student’s Role:

The REU student will work with graduate students and the faculty advisor to test and optimize wireless microimplant prototypes in both benchtop and in vivo small animal model experiments. The student will also be expected to develop testing protocols which may include setting up data acquisition systems and developing software, and provide comprehensive analysis of the collected data. Although students of all levels will be considered, candidates should be studying electrical, mechanical, or biomedical engineering.