Over 4,000 delegates from nearly 70 countries from across the globe will congregate in Dublin this month for the 8th World Congress of Biomechanics (WCB2018). WCB2018 will be co-hosted by RCSI (Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland) and Trinity College Dublin in partnership with AMBER, the Science Foundation Ireland-funded materials science and bioengineering research centre. The Congress is held once every 4 years and will bring together engineers and scientists from various disciplines including biology, physics, mathematics, computer science, chemistry and various clinical specialties.
Prof. Fergal O’Brien, RCSI Professor of Bioengineering & Regenerative Medicine, AMBER Deputy Director and Co-Chair of WCB2018 said “Winning the WCB 2018 bid means we are in effect bringing the World Cup of Biomechanics to Dublin. With an interdisciplinary focus spanning engineering, medicine, life sciences and industry, this event will be a significant boost for Ireland’s growing international reputation for bioengineering research as exemplified by the research at RCSI and AMBER which is partnering with industry to translate world class scientific research to the benefit of patients and society. We are honored that over 400 of the world’s leading researchers in the field have accepted our invitation to speak here this week.”
Prof. Daniel Kelly Trinity Professor of Tissue Engineering, AMBER Investigator and Co-Chair of WCB2018 said “The field of biomechanics sits at the interface of engineering and medicine, and research in the field has revolutionised medicine, particularly in the area of medical devices. Ireland’s medical technology sector has evolved into one of the leading clusters globally. 18 of the world’s top 25 medical technology companies have a base in Ireland and 50% of the over 400 medtech companies based here are indigenous. Ireland is therefore the ideal location for a congress that aims to enhance links between the clinical and academic research community and industry in the medical technology sector.”
The five-day scientific programme at the WCB2018 will cover speakers from across a wide spectrum of the sector including: Imaging and Device Biomechanics; Biofluid and Biotransport; Multiscale Biomechanics; Organ Biomechanics; Tissue Biomechanics; Cellular Biomechanics; Molecular Biomechanics and Whole Body Biomechanics. Applications range from basic biology to medical devices and the latest technologies. Exhibitions will highlight the latest technologies, publications, and medical devices.
Highlights of the conference will include:
• Professor Julie Steele’s biomechanics research over the past 30+ years has enabled countless individuals to participate comfortably and safely in their daily activities. Professor Steele, from the School of Medicine at the University of Wollongong, is founder and director of the internationally renowned Biomechanics Research Laboratory and Breast Research Australia. She has been actively involved in researching the effects of obesity and ageing on lower limb structure and function with implications for footwear design to promote physical activity and reduce falls in the elderly. In addition, she is very involved in breast health biomechanics and the aim of her research in this space is to ensure that any female, irrespective of age, health status or breast size, can enjoy the health benefits associated with regular exercise without suffering breast discomfort.
• Elazer R. Edelman is Professor of Medicine at Harvard Medical School, and Senior Attending Physician in the coronary care unit at the Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston. He has translated basic findings in vascular biology to the development of next generation medical devices such as cardiovascular stents – which has revolutionised healthcare and saved countless lives. Dr Edelman directs the Harvard-MIT Biomedical Engineering Center (BMEC).
• Dr Niamh Nowlan from Dublin and a graduate from Trinity College Dublin, but now based in the Department of Bioengineering of Imperial College London, UK, works in the area of developmental biomechanics, with particular focus on fetal movements. She will talk about two key research areas of interest; how mechanical forces induced by prenatal movements affect bone and joint formation before birth, and how fetal movements may be used as an indicator of fetal health and function.