Student Project, Oral Abstract Win Awards at ASAIO Conference

Biomedical engineering undergraduate students won a top prize for their Pediatric Heart Assist Device Monitor senior design project, and a master’s student was recognized for her oral abstract on using fluid dynamics to optimize blood flow for heart failure patients implanted with mechanical pumps at the 67th International Conference of the American Society of Artificial Internal Organs (ASAIO) held this summer in Chicago.

Senior undergraduate biomedical engineering majors Rachel Hillner, Luke Perry, Yuzhong Gong and Abdulaziz Khayat won 3rd place with their project, which is centered on an algorithm for analyzing the operation of a pediatric heart assist device implanted in children with congenital heart disease. The algorithm developed by the students identifies the rapid motion of a membrane that helps pump the blood, a metric that had no quantitative way to be analyzed clinically.

Senior Andre Farina and master’s student Jasmine Martinez, both in biomedical engineering, also presented research at the conference. Martinez was recognized with the 2022 ASAIO Oral Abstract Award for her work, “Optimizing HeartMate3 LVAD Speed Using Patient-Specific Hemodynamic Analysis.”

The students were led by Venkat Keshav Chivukula, director of the Multiscale Cardiovascular Fluids Laboratory and assistant professor of biomedical engineering.

The group presented six talks and posters at the conference, all touching on optimizing blood flow for heart failure patients implanted with mechanical pumps (left ventricular assist devices, or LVADs) utilizing fluid dynamics principles. Here they are, with the lead presenter(s):

  • Hemodynamic Study of an Implantable Artificial Kidney Device Using a Computational Model (Andre Farina, poster)
  • Virtual LVAD Speed Optimization Using Hemodynamic Modeling on a Large Patient Cohort (Jasmine Martinez, Venkat Keshav Chivukula, poster)
  • Pediatric Heart Assist Device Monitor (Rachel Hillner, Luke Perry, talk)
  • Lectio Signum ASL translator (Andre Farina, talk)
  • Optimizing Heartmate 3 LVAD speed using patient specific hemodynamic analysis (Jasmine Martinez, talk)
  • Investigating EVAHEART2 Speed Modulation Using Computational Hemodynamic Analysis (Jasmine Martinez, talk)

“The conference was an outstanding success,” Chivukula said. “We had multiple clinicians and engineering folks commenting on our impressive work in the field of hemodynamic analysis for cardiovascular disease therapy.”

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