Biomedical Engineering Research
Research plays a vital role in our undergraduate teaching. Not only does our research mean that you are taught by leading experts in their fields you will also have the opportunity to get involved in our research during your final year research project or by taking part in the Undergraduate Research Opportunities Programme during the summer.
The brain is the most complex known structure in the Universe. In the department of Biomedical Engineering we are investigating how individual neurons (brain cells) operate and how they connect to form networks. By understanding how the healthy and diseased brain works we can develop strategies and treatments for neurological disorders such as Alzheimer's disease, Parkinson's disease and epilepsy. Undergraduate students can become involved in the research during their final year project, working with stem cells, immunofluorescent probes, multi-electrode arrays and "animats", which are robots controlled by cultures of living cells.
The diagnosis and treatment of diseases is at the core of Biomedical Engineering. Our department is designing novel devices that can aid in pharmaceutical development, accelerate medical diagnosis, and restore functionality that has been lost due to accident or disease. For example, our research in neuroprosthetics and implant technologies focuses on building new devices that can interface with the nervous system to restore bladder control. We also develop haptic interfaces that can emulate "touch" in virtual environments and help dentistry students to improve their practise. Finally, we are advancing label-free imaging technologies, such as multi-photon ultraviolet microscopy and terahertz imaging for medical applications.
Rehabilitation and Ageing
Healthcare and support for the ageing population are areas of strategic importance for our future. In Biomedical Engineering we are designing technologies to support the elderly and improve the quality of life of patients. Examples of projects include robotic systems for stroke motor rehabilitation, developing functional electrical stimulation techniques to improve and maintain bone health in people with spinal cord injury, and generating biocompatible scaffolds for the restoration of damaged nervous tissue. We also develop computer-based systems for speech and language therapy following stroke, brain-computer interfaces with therapeutic applications for people with long-term neurodegenerative diseases and wearable devices for sensing data from the body.