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All Graduate Student Events at Drexel

  • UREP Drop-in Hours

    Wednesday, July 6, 2022

    3:00 PM-5:00 PM

    Bentley Hall, 2nd Floor

    • Undergraduate Students
    • Graduate Students

    Do you have questions about undergraduate research, fellowships, or enrichment programs? Drop-in hours are a chance to chat with staff and UREP ambassadors and get answers to your questions. Virtual drop-ins are available by request - email urep@drexel.edu to schedule.

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  • Understanding the Biological Effects of Non-thermal, Non-cavitational Therapeutic US in CW Healing

    Thursday, July 7, 2022

    9:00 AM-11:00 AM

    Bossone Research Center, Room 709, located at 32nd and Market Streets. Also on Zoom.

    • Undergraduate Students
    • Graduate Students
    • Faculty
    • Staff

    BIOMED PhD Thesis Defense

    Title:
    Understanding the Biological Effects of Non-thermal, Non-cavitational Therapeutic Ultrasound (US) in Chronic Wound (CW) Healing

    Speaker:
    Olivia (Ngo) Boerman, PhD Candidate
    School of Biomedical Engineering, Science and Health Systems
    Drexel University

    Advisors:
    Peter A. Lewin, PhD
    Richard B. Beard Distinguished University Professor
    School of Biomedical Engineering, Science and Health Systems
    Drexel University

    Kara L. Spiller, PhD
    Professor
    School of Biomedical Engineering, Science and Health Systems
    Drexel University

    Details:
    The purpose of this thesis was to elucidate the effects of low-frequency (20 kHz), low-intensity (100 mW/cm2) (LFLI US) therapeutic ultrasound on macrophage behavior and phenotype. Chronic wounds, such as venous and diabetic ulcers, affect approximately 6.5 million patients in the United States alone. Current standard protocols for wound management do not guarantee healing and include weekly re-dressings and debridement, needed on average for 13 months, to maintain a wound environment that is conducive to passive self-healing. Hence, there is a clear clinical need to develop alternative treatments that promote active (as opposed to passive) healing and shorten healing time.

    We have previously reported that treatment with LFLI US significantly (p < 0.03) reduces venous ulcer (VU) size in vivo as compared to VUs treated with a sham device. In a recently completed pilot study of diabetic ulcers (DUs), LFLI US treated wounds healed in nearly one third the time of the sham-treated wounds. However, the mechanisms by which LFLI US promotes chronic wound healing are not understood.

    There is evidence that the cause of impaired healing is the dysregulation of macrophage phenotype, especially the defective transition from pro-inflammatory (M1) to pro-healing (M2) macrophages, which has been identified as a major source of chronic inflammation. Our characterization of tissue debrided from diabetic ulcer patients treated with ultrasound or a sham device showed a decrease in M1/M2 related genes in healing wounds treated with LFLI US compared to non-healing wounds treated with a sham device over time.

    Therefore, the purpose of this thesis was to (1) characterize the effects of LFLI US on wound inflammation using debrided human chronic wound tissue, (2) develop and validate an experimental design to reliably conduct in vitro ultrasound experiments eliminating reflections, and (3) elucidate the direct effects of LFLI US on macrophage functional behavior and phenotype.

    First, debrided human chronic venous ulcer tissue from patients treated with LFLI US or a sham device were collected. RNA was extracted from these samples and processed using a multiplex gene expression analysis tool, Ampliseq. 477 genes were found to be differentially expressed (DEGs) in the ultrasound group when compared to the sham group (p < 0.05; FC >2) and notably, gene set enrichment analysis of these DEGs showed the most enriched gene set from downregulated DEGs was the inflammatory response gene set. Then, an acoustic chamber designed, modeled, and developed for controlled in vitro ultrasound experiments mitigating reflections.  FEA modeling showed 36-fold greater than intended acoustic pressure propagated to cells without the use of this developed acoustic chamber underscoring the necessity of accounting for reflections when propagating ultrasound in vitro. Finally, in vitro exposure of M1 macrophages to LFLI US showed a significant upregulation of 20 genes associated with mitochondrial and cell membrane activity and although not significant, a decrease protein secretion of inflammatory cytokines IL6 and TNF-α in ultrasound treated groups compared to sham treated groups.

    All together, these results suggest that LFLI US reduces wound inflammation in chronic wound tissue and a possible biological mechanism of this ultrasound-assisted healing may be through the decrease of macrophage secretion of inflammatory cytokines through modulating mitochondrial and cell membrane activity. This project lays the critical foundation necessary to begin exploring the possible biological mechanisms of LFLI US healing. With the understanding of how LFLI US modulates cell behavior and phenotype, ultrasound-based therapeutics have the potential to advance healing in a wide spanning number of diseases and dysfunctions ultimately enhancing patient quality of life.

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  • Hybrid: Pediatrics Grand Rounds

    Friday, July 8, 2022

    8:00 AM-9:00 AM

    Online: Please contact organizer for zoom link In-Person: DiGeorge Auditorium (max. 70 people)

    • Graduate Students
    • Faculty
    • Staff
    • Medical Residents/Fellows

    Topic
    Effects of Poverty on Children, Communities, and the Future of America

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  • Graduate Student Workshop: Cover Letters Are Important!

    Tuesday, July 12, 2022

    12:00 PM-1:00 PM

    https://drexel.zoom.us/meeting/register/tZUqc-2srDspHdOLzZxP_kbdudHVpVsEhjA2

    • Graduate Students

    Yes, they are! Always include one with your resume. Learn how to write an effective cover letter to help attain an interview!

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  • Developing an Arduino-based Functional Near Infrared Spectroscopy (fNIRS) and Two Clinical Studies

    Wednesday, July 13, 2022

    1:00 PM-3:00 PM

    Remote

    • Undergraduate Students
    • Graduate Students
    • Faculty
    • Staff

    BIOMED PhD Research Proposal

    Title:
    Developing an Arduino-based Functional Near Infrared Spectroscopy (fNIRS) and Two Clinical Studies

    Speaker:
    Ardy Wong, PhD Candidate
    School of Biomedical Engineering, Science and Health Systems
    Drexel University

    Advisor:
    Kambiz Pourrezaei, PhD
    Professor
    School of Biomedical Engineering, Science and Health Systems
    Drexel University

    Details:
    Functional near infrared spectroscopy (fNIRS) is a non-invasive and wearable optical imaging modality that has been used for many applications to monitor hemodynamic response in the clinical setting and experimental setting. These applications demonstrate the versatility of fNIRS as an imaging modality in comparison to its more expensive counterparts such as PET, SPECT, fMRI and EEG. Our lab has developed an affordable fNIRS system using the Arduino microcontroller. Validation tests, such as drift, linearity test and liquid phantom were done to compare with a commercial fNIRS system. This system was used on two different studies: [1] assessment of cerebral oxygenation response to Hemodialysis using fNIRS, and [2] hemodynamic response during odor detection task, as measured by fNIRS.

    Hemodialysis (HD) is the most common modality of renal replacement therapy for patients with end stage renal disease (ESRD). HD is a life-saving chronic procedure that removes metabolic waste products, balances the body’s acid contents, and removes excess body water to replace the function of patients’ failing kidneys. However, this therapy is highly burdensome to patients, causing numerous side effects and worsening quality of life. Experts have hypothesized that many of the symptoms and side effects of HD are related to the negative impact of HD on organ perfusion and oxygenation. HD is traditionally performed with continuous monitoring of heart rate and blood pressure. However, based on a few recent studies, blood pressure can be normal while patients on HD are experiencing substantial decrements in cerebral oxygen supply. Cognitive impairment, particularly in executive function domains, commonly affects patients on HD and worsens with longer durations of dialysis. Studies have shown that some patients exhibit worse cognitive function during HD sessions. This finding also does not seem to correlate with intradialytic blood pressure. Therefore, we are proposing to test fNIRS as an additional monitoring strategy during HD. Our goal is to monitor hemodynamic response of multiple patients during a hemodialysis session across three different clinics in Philadelphia.  

    In addition, the Arduino-based fNIRS system has been used to investigate the hemodynamic response during odor detection task conducted at the olfactory laboratory of Institute for Research in Fundamental Sciences (IPM). Different smells surround us and affect our behavior and emotion. We mostly do not acknowledge how intensely the smells shape our perceptual world until we lose it. This loss might be temporary as it happens during a common cold rhinitis or permanent following a head trauma. Assessment of olfactory nerve function has been part of the neurological examination in clinic, but its subjectivity and lack of precision has caused it not to be emphasized as expected. With the growing evidence for the importance of olfactory evaluation, several attempts were made to prepare precise and valid olfactory tests. Among such tests, University of Pennsylvania Smell Identification Test (UPSIT) has been extensively accepted for a quick assessment in clinic. Despite its high test-retest reliability, it still lacks objectivity as it relies on a subjective report. To overcome this subjectivity, neuroscientists have tried to utilize brain imaging techniques to make an inexpensive test which could easily be compared across different subjects. We hypothesize that the hemodynamic response between odor and non-odor trials will be significantly different.

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  • Virtual: Pediatrics Grand Rounds

    Friday, July 15, 2022

    8:00 AM-9:00 AM

    Online (Please contact organizer for zoom link)

    • Graduate Students
    • Faculty
    • Staff
    • Medical Residents/Fellows

    Topic
    Advances in Cystic Fibrosis Care and Research: The Future is Now

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  • Virtual: Pediatrics Grand Rounds

    Friday, July 22, 2022

    8:00 AM-9:00 AM

    Online Event: (Please contact organizer for zoom link)

    • Graduate Students
    • Faculty
    • Staff
    • Medical Residents/Fellows

    Special Neurology Grand Rounds, in Honor of Dr. Warren D. Grover

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  • Developing a Personal Statement for the NSF GRFP (NSF GRFP Workshop 3 of 4)

    Tuesday, July 26, 2022

    5:30 PM-7:00 PM

    Zoom: https://drexel.zoom.us/meeting/register/tZUkd-igrjMiGdeH9Dn4YbrhwFlDIulMgNnl

    • Undergraduate Students
    • Graduate Students
    This third of four GRFP application workshops will guide you through essential dimensions of writing a strong personal statement, including how to select content, define a structure, and reflect meaningfully on your experiences. You do not need to have attended previous GRFP workshops to benefit from this one! You can find preparatory materials for this workshop, as well as materials from the previous workshops, at https://drexel0.sharepoint.com/sites/Pennoni-UREP-Public/Fellowships/SitePages/NSF-GRFP-Workshops-and-Events.aspx
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  • Virtual: Pediatric Pearls - Updates From the St. Chris Experts

    Thursday, August 4, 2022

    12:00 PM-12:30 PM

    Online: (Please contact organizer for zoom link)

    • Graduate Students
    • Faculty
    • Staff
    • Medical Residents/Fellows

    Topic
    A Back-To-School View of the COVID-19 Pandemic

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  • Virtual: Pediatric Pearls - Updates From the St. Chris Experts

    Thursday, August 18, 2022

    12:00 PM-12:30 PM

    Online: (Please contact organizer for zoom link)

    • Graduate Students
    • Faculty
    • Staff
    • Medical Residents/Fellows

    Topic
    Back-To-School Pearls for Children and Youth With Special Needs

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