Graduate Studies
Biomedical Engineering Program Graduate Studies

Biomedical Engineering faculty members advise students in several PhD programs at RIT, including Microsystems Engineering, Imaging Science and Computing and Information Science. Below is a brief description of their research interests. For details on specific research projects, please contact each faculty member directly.

To learn more about the research interests of the faculty, please visit our Research page. Interested students should contact the professor responsible for the project.

More information about the Microsystems Engineering PhD program is available here.


Thomas Gaborski Thomas Gaborski (PhD) 1 PhD opening

Exploring cellular interactions in co-culture microenvironments: We are currently seeking students who are excited about nanomaterials and cell biology. One of our active projects involves developing cell co-culture microarrays to investigate the interaction between cells in close proximity. These microarrays can be used as screens to study drug interactions, adult stem cell reprogramming and even fundamental questions of how cells communicate with one another. Students working on this project can focus on materials science including membrane scaffold fabrication. The supporting membrane will have tunable pore sizes, surface chemistry and even controlled degradation.

Behnaz Ghoraani Behnaz Ghoraani (PhD) 2 PhD openings

Atrial fibrillation (2 openings): Atrial fibrillation (AF) is the most common sustained arrhythmia and is treated using Radiofrequency (RF) ablation to create multiple RF lesions to form lines of electrical block to disrupt arrhythmic wavefronts. However, there are several open questions and technology limitations to provide a successful and safe AF ablation. The following projects are designed to seek an answer to the different aspects of this problem: Project I: AF Mechanism; This project investigates merging anatomy and electrophysiology behaviour of atrium to understand AF phenomenon and refine existing AF ablation techniques. This combined strategy uses real-time and adaptive signal and image processing techniques to characterize the electrical properties of AF and infer anatomical properties of the cardiac substrate. Project II: Real time lesion evaluation system; In this project, imaging methods are investigated to map the atrial anatomy and also to determine the quality of RF ablation lesions that are delivered during an AF ablation. Project III: AF ablation safety; Catheter ablation of AF is mostly guided by x-ray fluoroscopy, and its long procedural time and high radiation exposure may cause radiation related risk for the patient and the operators. This project will focus on optical methods to track the catheter during the ablation procedure and preventing or reducing x-ray exposure during an AF ablation.

Blanca H. Lapizco-Encinas Blanca H. Lapizco-Encinas (PhD) 2 PhD openings

Advancing the development of insulator-based dielectrophoresis microdevices: Dielectrophoresis is an electrokinetic transport mechanism that is becoming increasingly important as a microscale bioanalytical method. Dielectrophoresis induces particle movement in the presence of a nonuniform electric field. This powerful microfluidics technique has been used to manipulate, concentrate, detect and sort a wide array of bioparticles: DNA, proteins, virus, bacteria, yeast, parasites and mammalian cells. In iDEP systems, insulating structures are employed to distort the distribution of an electric field inside a microchannel or chamber in order to induce particle movement. The present project will explore the following aspects: i) effect of insulator geometry on particle trapping, ii) effect on the shape of AC applied potentials on particle manipulation, iii) integration of multi-stage iDEP systems for the purification of complex mixtures of bioparticles and iv) development of specific applications with bioparticles, such as viability assessment and pathogen detection.

Cristian A. Linte (PhD) 1 MSc Opening and 1PhD

Techniques for image guidance, visualization and surgical navigation in computer-assisted interventions: Dr. Linte’s research interests have focused on exploring the use of medical imaging to generate new paradigms for image-guided visualization and navigation for minimally invasive therapy. Thanks to the advances in medical image acquisition, visualization and display, surgical tacking and image computing infrastructure, a wide variety of technology has emerged that facilitates diagnosis, procedure planning, intra-operative guidance and treatment monitoring while providing safer and less invasive approaches for therapy delivery. Cardiac interventions have been among the last disciplines to benefit from minimally invasive treatment techniques, mainly due to the challenges associated with access and visualization inside the beating heart. As such, Dr. Linte’s research endeavors have employed both technologies (image acquisition, surgical tracking, visualization and display) and techniques (image analysis, modeling, evaluation and validation) toward the development, evaluation and pre-clinical integration of image guidance environments for surgical navigation of minimally invasive cardiac interventions.