Faculty Selections

This list is available Texas A&M faculty members willing to host summer program participants in their labs, with a brief description of their research focus. Identify your top three research interests from this list.

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Applied Cognitive Ergonomics Lab (ACE-lab) is a multi-disciplinary research laboratory focused on human-centered design, development, and testing of complex human-systems. ACE-lab members conduct research in three thrust areas: (i) Continuous remote monitoring of health and performance; (ii) Community & stakeholder engagement; and, (iii) Resilience and system safety. At ACE-lab we apply a wide range of Human-Systems Engineering methods to ensure that humans cognitive and physical limitations and capabilities are taken into account in designing healthcare, aviation, ground transportation, military, and process control systems.

Assistant Professor

College of Engineering
Department of Industrial & Systems Engineering

Dr. Farzan Sasangohar

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Dr. Tian’s lab is developing soft, flexible and stretchable electronic wearables that can continuously measure health related biophysical and biochemical information. These soft seamless interfaces can also stimulate physiological processes for therapeutics and provide feedback to human-machine interface. For example, soft and stretchable thermal sensors can accurately measure thermal conductivity and diffusivity of complex materials systems, such as the human skin, which is challenging using conventional techniques. Students/teachers working in Dr. Tian’s lab will have an opportunity to get involved in the design, fabrication and testing of these sensing and actuation devices. For example, they may learn how to design the micropatterns of wearable sensors using software including AutoCAD and SolidWorks. They may learn how to manufacture these biosensors and participate in the testing and validation of their performance for monitoring physiological information, such as heart, muscle and brain activities, of human subjects.

Assistant Professor

College of Engineering
Department of Industrial & Systems Engineering

Dr. Limei Tian

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Dr. Cote's lab is developing systems for diagnosing or monitoring people at the point-of-care (POC), which could be in their home, in a physician’s office or in an ambulance on the way to the hospital lab. The lab team is focused on the engineering design of all aspects of a POC system for assessing levels important biomarkers, including: 1) the hand-held optical and electronic device, 2) the type of paper used to collect the sample (blood, urine, or saliva) and, 3) the chemistry on the paper that senses the biomarker (i.e. sugar), and then putting these pieces together to inform the patient of the results (the concentration in the sample). Students working in Dr. Cote’s lab will likely be involved in one or more of the three types of technology described above.  For example, they may help make the testing strips out of a special paper called nitrocellulose.  Further, they may learn how to make very small particles called nanoparticles out of gold or silver and then learn how to attach chemicals to the nanoparticles to detect the biomarkers. Lastly, they may be involved with using or helping to make the optical and electronic systems for monitoring the biomarker and chemistry on the paper.

Director, TEES Center for Remote Health Technologies and Systems
Charles H. & Bettye Barclay Professor of Engineering 

College of Engineering

Department of Biomedical Engineering

Dr. Gerard L. Coté

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Investigation of roles and function of subcortical neural circuits in migraine. The goal for the proof-of-principle development will focus on building a fully implantable wireless multi-channel optoelectronic system that enables both optogenetic control of neuronal activity and monitoring cortical spreading depression in vivo in freely behaving animals and wireless delivery of a drug to targeted regions. As the development progress, the ultimate goal of the project is to investigate roles and function of subcortical neural circuits in migraine using a wireless platform electronic developed Migraine is a common and complex brain disorder. Although it is clear that head pain is a key manifestation of the disorder for most patients, what drives the activation of neuronal pain pathways in susceptible patients is less obvious. Current treatments for these disorders are often ineffective and do not address the underlying pathology. A substantial barrier to the development of improved therapeutics is an insufficient understanding of mechanisms by which the migraine is initiated. Optogenetic control of neuron activity paired with nerve recording would give us a unique set of tools that would lead to greater understanding of subcortical regions including diencephalic and brainstem nuclei that are thought to be related to migraine. Devices that interface with the deep brain circuits provide an anatomically-specific and relatively non-invasive approach for the study of neuronal functions and its mechanisms, as provide the groundwork for eventual treatment of migraine in patient populations. Unfortunately, their effectiveness has been limited by a number three main factors, (1) the resolution at which current techniques can reliably activate and inhibit neuronal subpopulations, (2) chronic implantation of the current population of nerve electrodes causes neuron inflammation due to improper interfaces and mechanical forces, and (3) most of the current device require a tether or large battery pack that makes them less than ideal for small animal studies. These three factors represent significant technical challenges that we plan to address in this proposal. This proposal represents a collaboration that has successfully achieved critical first steps towards meeting the above technical challenges, and the work proposed here would enable the extension of these successes to provide the platform for revolutionary discoveries and therapeutics for control of neuronal circuitry in the brain.

Assistant Professor

College of Engineering,
Department of Electrical & Computer Engineering

Dr. Si Park

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Dr Mabbott’s lab focusses on the development of metallic nanoparticles for integration into self-testing devices used by the patient for the diagnosis of disease and infection. Researchers that work in the lab design and synthesize nanoparticles in a range of shapes and sizes, depending on the project needs. However, generally, we are almost always trying to make the particles more sensitive so that they can detect disease at low concentrations and more specific so that they recognize the disease we are targeting and nothing else. A student working in the lab will be teamed up with one of our outstanding researchers to carry out the synthesis, functionalization and application of nanoparticles towards testing.   

Assistant Professor

College of Engineering,
Department of Biomedical Engineering

Dr. Samuel Mabbott