Bioengineering Modeling, Analysis, and Design (BE MAD I & II)
The Bioengineering Modeling, Analysis, and Design (BE MAD) sequence is the core lab experience for Bioengineering students. Normally taken during the junior year, it draws together seemingly disparate topics from earlier course work, representing the breadth and complexity of Bioengineering. Each module requires extensive math, engineering, modeling & programming, data analysis, and writing.
Dialysis & Pharmacokinetics (September - October)
In these lab modules, students create a mathematical model which involves a series of differential equations to predict the appropriate amount of medication to provide a patient. This process is similar to the design process of pharmaceutical companies who must define appropriate dosage for medication. These modules pull together work students have or will do in statistics, programming and modeling, fluid transport, and physiology.
Cockroach-Machine-Interface (October - December)
In this lab module series, students first learn to control a leg, severed from a live cockroach, using electrical signals. The next step is to attach the leg to a motor arm in order to get two degrees of motion (biomechatronic prosthetic). The final step is to use the students' electrophysiological signals from their muscles (EMG) and use that to control the biomechatronic prosthetic. This module pulls together work students have or will do do with physiology, biomechanics, programming, electronics and signal theory, as well as statistics.
See the feature by "Here & Now" on NPR: https://www.wbur.org/hereandnow/2015/06/10/cockroach-legs-research
Another story from Bioengineering's blog: https://beblog.seas.upenn.edu/biomechatronic-students-cockroach/
Microfluidics through wax printing (January)
In this lab module, students design, using SolidWorks, and fabricate their own microfluidic device using wax printing techniques, the application of which would be for diagnostic devices. This module pulls together work students have done in biomaterials, programming, statistics, and fluid transport.
Synthetic Biology (February)
In this lab module, students mathematical model gene expression using spectrophotometer data. They also develop image processing and computational models to characterize quorum sensing. This module pulls together work students have done in molecular biology, physical chemistry, advanced mathematics, programming, and statistics.
This novel module was published in the journal ACS Synthetic Biology: https://pubs.acs.org/doi/abs/10.1021/acssynbio.6b00057
Electrocardiogram (ECG) & Signal Processing (March)
In this lab module, students design and develop an analog electronic filter to separate heart rate and respiratory rate from their own ECG data. This module pulls together work students have done in physiology, signals and systems, electronics, programming, and statistics.
Blog article: https://beblog.seas.upenn.edu/junior-bioengineering-students-filter-ecg-signals-for-use-in-astronaut-fatigue-monitoring-device/
Low-Cost Spectrophotometer (April)
In this lab module, students design and develop a low cost spectrophotometer for absorbance and fluorescence measurements. Students need to build an enclosure, using Solidworks, the electronics, and a Graphical User Interface. This module pulls together work students have done in physical chemistry, programming and statistics.
Blog article: https://beblog.seas.upenn.edu/junior-bioengineering-students-complete-their-laboratory-course-with-creatively-designed-spectrophotometers/