Researchers

The Early Stage Researchers involved in the VPH-CaSE project are listed here, along with a brief biography and the focus of their Individual Research Projects.


ESR1: Paolo Ferraiuoli

Institution: University of Sheffield

Bio: Paolo was born in Italy in 1990. He obtained both a BSc and MSc (cum laude) in Biomedical Engineering from University Campus Bio-Medico di Roma (Italy) in 2012 and 2015, respectively. During his MSc thesis project, he spent five months as visiting scholar within the SMART research group of Queen Mary University of London, UK. In particular, the thesis covered the development and characterisation of a wearable tactile display made of dielectric elastomers actuator (DEA) for haptic applications in virtual reality systems. In October 2015, he joined the Mathematical Modelling in Medicine (MMM) group of the University of Sheffield as PhD student and Marie Curie Early Stage Researcher within the VPH-CaSE project.

IRP Focus: The aim of his research is to develop optical methods able to characterise 3D dynamic deformations in cardiovascular soft tissues at different length scales (from coronary artery to cardiac surface).

Contact: p.ferraiuoli@sheffield.ac.uk


ESR2: Simone Ferrari

Bio: Simone was born in Castel San Giovanni (Italy) in 1988. He obtained his BSc in Biomedical Engineering in July 2011 from Politecnico di Milano with a thesis entitled “Evaluation of the biomechanics of the ischemic left ventricle from MRI data”. He continued his studies in Biomedical Engineering, with a focus in Biomechanics and Biomaterials, at Politecnico di Milano from where he received his MSc in July 2014 with a thesis entitled “Numerical design of a micromixer for biomedical applications”. After his graduation, he continued his research on biomicrofluidics at the Department of Chemistry, Materials and Chemical Engineering “Giulio Natta” of Politecnico di Milano from September 2014 to June 2015. From September 2015, he joined the Mathematical Modelling in Medicine group of the Department of Infection Immunity and Cardiovascular Disease at the University of Sheffield as a PhD student and Early Stage Researcher as part of the VPH-CaSE Project.

IRP Focus: His work focuses on the development of experimental and numerical methods for the characterization of complex flows able to improve the scanners calibration for diagnostic imaging.

Contact: s.ferrari@sheffield.ac.uk


ESR3: Louis Fixsen

Institution: Technische Universiteit Eindhoven

Bio: Louis was born in United Kingdom in 1993. He received his Master of Engineering with distinction from the University of the West of England, Bristol in 2015, by defending his thesis titled “Material and distance analysis using static eliminators”. He completed internships with ST Microelectronics and Fraser Anti-Static Techniques Ltd. during his studies. Louis became a PhD candidate in the Cardiovascular Biomechanics group of the Department of Biomedical Engineering at Eindhoven University of Technology in 2016, at the same time joining the VPH-CaSE project.

IRP Focus: His research involves the experimental assessment of heart function in left ventricular assist device supported patients. This is done through use of pre-existing ultrasound ‘strain imaging’ techniques on an experimental platform, as well as ultrasound simulations using these same techniques with models from another ESR.

Contact: l.s.fixsen@tue.nl


ESR4: Eric Chen

 Institution: Technische Universiteit Eindhoven

Bio: Eric was born in the United States in 1987. He earned his BSc in aerospace engineering in 2010 at Arizona State University (USA) and continued his education at the RWTH Aachen (Germany) where he defended his research on computational approaches to using non-Newtonian models for human blood, earning him his MSc in mechanical engineering in 2012. From 2013-2015 he was employed by Siemens as an aerospace and simulation engineer where he conducted research and development on advanced turbine blade designs. Eric joined the department of biomedical engineering at the Eindhoven University of Technology (Netherlands) in 2016 as a PhD candidate.  He does this by applying his computational engineering background to biomechanics, utilizing numerical techniques to simulate different aspects of the beating heart.

IRP Focus: His involvement with VPH-CaSE is in obtaining a better understanding of the effects of stress and strain on hearts supported by ventricular assist devices.

Contact: e.chen@tue.nl


ESR5: Carlos Ledezma

Institution: University College London

Bio: Carlos was born in Caracas (Venezuela) in 1991. He received his B.Sc (Cum Laude) and M.Sc (Honors) degrees in electronic engineering from Simón Bolívar University (USB), Venezuela (2014 and 2015 respectively). He spent one year at Université de Technologie de Compiègne, France, as an undergrad studying biomedical engineering as part of a student exchange program. Between 2013-2015 he worked as a research assistant for the Applied Bioengineering and Biophysics Group of the USB, doing also a 5 month internship at the Laboratoire de Traitement du Signal et de l’Image of the Université de Rennes 1 (France), working on signal processing and machine learning techniques for the detection of events in biomedical signals. He is currently working on his Ph.D degree at the Multiscale Cardiovascular Engineering Group in UCL as part of the VPH-CaSE project.

IRP Focus: His work looks into the use of numerical methods to model the coupling between the electrical and mechanical behaviour of the heart.

Contact: c.ledezma@ucl.ac.uk


ESR6: Mirko Bonfanti

Institution: University College London

Bio: Mirko was born in Milan (Italy) in 1988. He obtained his BSc (cum laude) in Biomedical Engineering in September 2010 from Politecnico di Milano. He continued his studies in Biomedical Engineering, with a focus in Biomechanics and Biomaterials, at Politecnico di Milano where he received his MSc (cum laude) in April 2013, his thesis was titled “Design and development of a new neonatal ventilator for total liquid ventilation”. After his graduation, he continued his research on the biomechanics of the respiratory system at the Department of Chemistry, Materials and Chemical Engineering “Giulio Natta” of Politecnico di Milano from June 2013 to December 2014. He then worked as an R&D Engineer at Baxter International Inc. in the team for the support and improvement of medical products already on the market. In September 2015, he joined the Multiscale Cardiovascular Engineering group of the Department of Mechanical Engineering at University College London as a PhD student and Early Stage Researcher within the VPH-CaSE project.

IRP Focus: His work focuses on the development of patient-specific models of Aortic Dissections to support the pre and post-operative surgical planning.

Contact:  mirko.bonfanti.15@ucl.ac.uk


ESR7: Susanna Migliori

Institution: Politecnico di Milano

Bio: Susanna was born in 1985 in Rome (Italy). She obtained her Bachelor’s Degree in Biomedical Engineering in February 2009 from University Campus Bio-Medico di Roma, in Rome. The final dissertation title was “Three dimensional finite element model of the intestinal electrical activity”. The mathematical model developed was completed and presented through a scientific publication in Physical Biology Journal. She obtained her Master’s Degree in Biomedical Engineering, with specialization in Bio-Mechatronics, Robotics and Automation, in December 2011 from University Campus Bio-Medico di Roma. The final dissertation title was “Modelling the electro-mechanical activity of the gastrointestinal tissue, with clinical and bio-engineering application”. In 2013 she moved to the United Kingdom and started a postgraduate research programme, Master of Science by Research (MRes), at the University of Southampton. The MRes programme consisted in the performance of a research activity with the topic of “Stent design for peripheral artery disease”. The programme was completed in October 2015 and she was awarded the MRes Degree in Advanced Mechanical Engineering Science. Susanna is currently taking a PhD programme in Bioengineering at Politecnico di Milano, as an Early Stage Researcher within the VPH-CaSE project.

IRP Focus: The topic of the research activity Patient-specific modelling of bifurcation stenting procedures for interventional planning.

Contact: susanna.migliori@polimi.it


ESR8: Ricardo Gómez Bardón

Institution: Politecnico di Milano

Bio: Ricardo was born in Madrid (Spain) in 1989. He received his degree in Industrial Engineering from Universidad Politécnica de Madrid in 2013. In 2011 he was awarded a double-degree European scholarship funded by the ATLANTIS program (EAGLES project), with which he took a Master of Science in Mechanical Engineering at Drexel University (Philadelphia, USA) and carried out research in Biomedical Engineering at LaBS (Politecnico di Milano, Italy), on the design and CFD analysis of an intravascular cardiac pump for cavopulmonary assistance. He has great interest in medical applications of engineering, and has worked for two years in Madrid and London, as a CFD Analyst at Intersurgical Ltd., a leading company in the design and manufacture of medical devices for respiratory therapies. After these experiences in Industry, he re-joined the LaBS in September 2015 as a PhD candidate in Bioengineering, as a member of the VPH-CaSE Project. , working with Prof. Gabriele Dubini and Prof. Giancarlo Pennati, and in collaboration with LivaNova, one of the main manufacturers of cardiac surgery devices in the market.

IRP Focus: His research project is focused on cardiopulmonary bypass devices.

Contact: ricardo.gomez@polimi.it


ESR9: Emilia Badescu

Institution: Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique

Bio: Emilia was born in Romania in 1990. She received her BSc degree in “Electronics and Telecommunications Engineering” in 2013 and her MSc degree in “Biomedical Engineering” in 2015 from the Politehnica University of Timisoara (Romania). She validated her first year of master at Linköping University (Sweden) and she performed her master project at CREATIS (Centre de recherche en acquisition et traitement de l’image pour la santé), Lyon (France). Her master project was focused on classification of media in multi-spectral photo-acoustic imaging. In October 2015, she started a new project at CREATIS, being enrolled as a Marie Curie Early Stage Researcher at CNRS (Centre national de la recherche scientifique) in the framework of the VPH-CaSE project. The aim of her PhD project is cardiac motion estimation in 3D Ultrasound Imaging.

IRP Focus: Her work focuses on phase-based methods for computing the estimation applied to images that contain Transverse Oscillations (TO).

Contact: emilia.badescu@creatis.insa-lyon.fr


ESR10: Gerardo Kenny Rumindo

Institution: Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique

 Bio: Gerardo was born in Jakarta (Indonesia) in 1989. In 2012 he was awarded an Erasmus Mundus Scholarship, in which he took part in the Common European Master’s Course in Biomedical Engineering. Through this program he obtained his MSc degree in Biomedical engineering from Rijksuniversiteit Groningen (Netherlands) and RWTH Aachen (Germany). He completed his Master’s thesis project with Mobelife – a part of the Materialise Group -located in Leuven (Belgium), where he worked on patient-specific acetabular implants, specifically on the post-operative implant placement measurement and its biomechanical effects. After his graduation, he continued working in Mobelife as an R&D Engineer to improve the finite-element procedure for accelerated design and in silico evaluation of the custom acetabular implants. In October 2015, he joined the CNRS  as an Early Stage Researcher as part of the VPH-CaSE project, working in the CREATIS lab and in collaboration with TIMC-IMAG lab in Grenoble and CHU hospital in Saint Etienne.

IRP Focus: His PhD project focuses on the development of a cardiac modelling approach to predict the long-term progression of ischemic myocardium after myocardial infarction

Contact: kenny.rumindo@creatis.insa-lyon.fr


ESR11: Massimiliano Mercuri

Institution:  Therenva

Bio: Massimiliano was born in Milan (Italy) in 1990. He received his M.Sc (Cum Laude) in Biomedical Engineering in December 2014 at Politecnico di Milano (Milan, Italy) with a master thesis entitled “Computational study of coating delamination of Hybrid Bioresorbable Stents”. The thesis focused on the development of a numerical and computational predictive model of the mechanical interaction and behavior during expansion and placement of a commercially available bioresorbable coronary magnesium stent covered with a bioresorbable polymeric coating. Since June 2015 he has been employed as a Marie Curie Early Stage Researcher within the VPH-Case project at Therenva, a french company with more than nine years of experience in designing innovative image guidance systems for minimally invasive cardiovascular surgery. As a PhD student he joined the Department of Infection, Immunity and Cardiovascular Disease at the University of Sheffield.

IRP Focus: His research focuses on the development of strategies for tuning boundary conditions parameters using clinical patient data in patient-specific cardiovascular models.

Contact: m.mercuri@therenva.com


ESR12: Simone Ambrogio

Institution: Leeds Test Objects

 Bio: Simone was born in Reggio Calabria (Italy) in 1988. He received his Master’s Degree in Biomedical Engineering from the University of Pisa (Italy) in April 2015. He was trained, during his dissertation, as member of Elettronica Bio Medicale Srl (a company of TBS Group), leader in Clinical Engineering Services and Health Technology Management for the Italian National Health System. Particularly, his research focused on the development of tools and methods for the definition of a set of objective criteria for Quality Assurance and Quality Control of rigid endoscopes. In September 2015 he was employed, as an Early Stage Researcher within VPH-CaSE, by Leeds Test Objects Ltd, a world leading company specialising in the design of Medical Imaging Quality Assurance test objects (Medical Imaging Phantoms). As a PhD student, he joined the Medical Physics group of the Department of Cardiovascular Disease at the University of Sheffield.

IRP Focus: His work is focuses on the development of a Complex Flow Phantom for Diagnostic Imaging suitable for the market requirements.

Contact: sambrogio1@sheffield.ac.uk


ESR13: Jeroen Feher

Institution: ANSYS

Bio: Jeroen was born in the Netherlands in 1986, he received his BSc. (2011) and MSc. (2014) degrees in biomedical engineering from Eindhoven University of Technology (the Netherlands). During his MSc. thesis project he worked within the groups of Cardiovascular Biomechanics in Eindhoven and Cardiovascular science at the University of Sheffield (United Kingdom); the project focussed on developing 1D-modelling techniques for determining virtual fractional flow reserve. After sparking his interest for patient-specific modelling he returned to the University of Sheffield to work as a research associate within the VPH-Share project (2013-2015) to develop a sensitivity and uncertainty analysis framework for cardiovascular modelling solutions using high performance computing. As of September 2015, Jeroen has joined ANSYS Inc. (Lyon, France) and LaBS at Politecnico di Milano (Milan, Italy) as an Early Stage Researcher within the VPH-CaSE project.

IRP Focus: The aim of his research project is to develop a comprehensive toolkit for computational hemodynamics and application of reduced order modelling techniques suitable for every day clinical use.

Contact: jeroen.feher@ansys.com


ESR14: Benjamin Kappler

Institution: LifeTec Group

Bio: Benjamin was born in Luckenwalde (Germany) in 1987. He received his M.Sc (Cum Laude) in Medical Biotechnology from Technische Universität Berlin, Germany. He performed his master project at BCRT (Berlin-Brandenburg Center for Regenerative Therapies), an alliance between the Charité – Universitätsmedizin Berlin and the Helmholtz Association. His thesis focused on preparation and characterization of human cardiac extracellular matrix for application in cardiac regenerative medicine. In September 2015, he was employed as an Research Engineer at LifeTec Group and enrolled as a Marie Curie Early Stage Researcher within VPH-CaSE.

IRP Focus: Improvement of the ex-vivo isolated beating heart platform “PhysioHeart” which is used for device and therapy tests under real cardiac dynamic conditions. This platform is based on slaughterhouse animal tissue and is able to minimise preclinical animal studies.
http://lifetecgroup.com/technology/rd-models/physioheart/

Contact: b.kappler@lifetecgroup.com,