University of Arizona College of Engineering University of Arizona College of Engineering University of Arizona College of Engineering University of Arizona College of Engineering University of Arizona College of Engineering

Welcome to BME!

Established in 2009, the department of biomedical engineering in the UA College of Engineering department reflects a long-standing tradition of interdisciplinary research at the intersection of medicine, science and engineering.

Our faculty boast a variety of backgrounds and research interests, but all are dedicated to improving human health through the application of engineering and scientific principles.

The BME Graduate Interdisciplinary Program, which is administered by the UA Graduate College, offers the research and teaching expertise of more than 60 faculty in 17 departments.

UA Engineering Faculty Develop Device to Improve Screening for Ovarian Cancer

Raymond K. Kostuk exhibits the bench-top VHIS at work in his lab located in the University of Arizona’s department of electrical and computer engineering. Photo by Taylor Hudson/Tech Launch ArizonaJennifer Barton, professor of biomedical engineering and interim director of the BIO5 Institute, collaborated with Raymond Kostuk of the department of electrical and computer engineering to develop a novel method and device to detect and diagnose ovarian cancer. Their approach is based on a volume holographic imaging system.

They have successfully completed a clinical trial using a bench-top version of the device and are currently developing a handheld rigid endoscope version.

Image courtesy of Taylor Hudson/Tech Launch Arizona

Retina Researcher Eggers Sheds Light on Vision’s Mysteries

Rod and cone photoreceptors in a human retina. Photo courtesy of Dr. Robert Fariss, National Eye Institute, NIH
Associate professor of physiology and biomedical engineering Erika Eggers recently received two prestigious federal grants, totaling $2.8 million, to reduce the specter of blindness for millions with diabetes and deepen insight into how we see.

She is principal investigator of a $1.9 million project funded by the National Eye Institute of the National Institutes of Health, with additional support from the International Retinal Research Foundation, to study "Retinal Neuronal Signaling in Early Diabetes."  

She was also awarded a 2016 Faculty Early Career Development Award of $900,000 from the National Science Foundation, the agency’s most prestigious honor for junior faculty members.

Photo courtesy of Robert Fariss, National Eye Institute, National Institutes of Health

Gmitro Helps Push the Boundary of Radiology with Biophotonics

Portrait of Art GmitroBiophotonics – the development and application of optical techniques for the study of biological molecules, cells and tissue – is expanding the scope of radiology by bringing clinicians and researchers new tools for noninvasive imaging of cancer and other diseases.

Department head and professor of biomedical engineering, medical imaging and optical sciences Art Gmitro is a pioneer of the interdisciplinary field, which incorporates medicine, biology, physics, engineering, technology and more. 

“Biophotonics is somewhat like magnetic resonance: a rich technology that can measure many different things,” he said. 

Students Create Cost-Effective, Easy-to-Use Medical Device

Engineering Design Team 15024 with their project posterAn incorrectly inserted nasogastric feeding tube can lead to serious injury or death.

But a UA College of Engineering senior design team featuring four biomedical engineering students is helping to mitigate the danger.

In May, they produced a working prototype of an instrument that gives instant feedback on tube placement.

Treating Arthritis with Cartilage Grown from Stem Cells on Scaffolds

John Szivek points out arthritis damage on a bone; image courtesy of ABC 12 WJRTA technique developed by John A. Szivek, UA professor of orthopaedic surgery and biomedical engineering, may someday help arthritis patients avoid knee replacement surgery.

His research at the UA Orthopedic Research Laboratory grows cartilage from stem cells taken from fat tissue on scaffolding that mimics the structure of a normal bone.

Tracking the 'Body Electric' with Bioelectronics

Sensor contained within the Biostamp wearable device. Image courtesy of the UA Sarver Heart Center.A balloon catheter that more efficiently implants electrodes into malfunctioning hearts. A mesh cap that detects the force of blows to the head during contact sports. A stretchable, wearable real-time heart monitor.

As reported in the New Yorker and KXAS-TV news, these are just a sampling of the bioelectronic devices developed by Dr. Marvin Slepian, associate department head of biomedical engineering for clinical/industrial affairs, and his collaborators.

University of Arizona College of Engineering
Department of Biomedical Engineering 1127 E James E. Rogers Way P.O. Box 210020 Tucson, AZ 85721-0020