E/Week

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E/WEEK
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News about
The University of Iowa College of Engineering
Week of February 11, 2018
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E/WEEK College Staff:
Editor:  Wendy Brentner, director, alumni relations and communications
College Web Site:  www.engineering.uiowa.edu
E/WEEK Archives:  http://list.uiowa.edu/archives/eweek.html
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IN THIS EDITION:

1. Grosland Appointed Engineering Associate Dean for Academic Programs
2. Villarini Named Next Director of IIHR
3. Electrical and Computer Engineering Students Mallaro, Sermet Featured in Dare to Discover Campaign
4. FDA to Expedite Review of IDx-DR, A Breakthrough AI Diagnostic System
5. Grants and Contracts
6. College Events for the Coming Weeks
7. Alumni: Where Are They Now?
8. About E/WEEK
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1. Grosland Appointed Engineering Associate Dean for Academic Programs

Nicole M. Grosland, University of Iowa College of Engineering Distinguished Professor and departmental executive officer of Biomedical Engineering, has been appointed Associate Dean for Academic Programs, effective February 19, 2018.
 
"Nicole chaired Biomedical Engineering's Undergraduate Curriculum Committee for several years," Alec Scranton, dean of the College of Engineering, said. "In that role she led the complicated process of redesigning Biomedical Engineering's undergraduate curriculum. She has shown exceptional dedication to undergraduate education as evidenced by the fact that eight Biomedical Engineering graduating classes have recognized her for excellence in teaching and dedication to student success.”   She is also a past recipient of the College of Engineering Faculty Excellence Award for Teaching.
 
Grosland also holds an appointment in the Department of Orthopedics and Rehabilitation, is a researcher in the UI Center for Computer-Aided Design (CCAD) and the Iowa Institute for Biomedical Imaging. As part of CCAD, she directs the Musculoskeletal Imaging, Modeling, and EXperimentation (MIMX) program. MIMX is a collaborative effort directed at computational modeling of anatomic structures. Her present research interests include spinal biomechanics, total joint arthroplasty, patient/subject-specific model development, and finite element meshing techniques.
 
In addition to her research and teaching achievements, Grosland co-founded Clubfoot Solutions, a non-profit organization that aspires to rid the world of untreated clubfoot.
 
Grosland joined the College of Engineering as a member of the faculty in 2001, having earned both her B.S.E. and Ph.D. degrees in biomedical engineering in 1994 and 1998, respectively.


2. Villarini Named Next Director of IIHR

Gabriele Villarini, associate professor of civil and environmental engineering, has been appointed as the next director of IIHR—Hydroscience & Engineering, effective Feb. 15, 2018.

Villarini has served as interim director since August 2017 and associate director immediately prior to that, since December 2016.

Villarini’s research record has resulted in several prestigious awards including the 2017 Water Young Investigator Award; being named as a Fellow by the American Geophysical Union (AGU) in 2016; and the James B. Macelwane Medal, also presented by the AGU in 2016.

“Prof. Villarini's remarkable achievements at this early stage of his career are an impressive predictor of his ability to lead IIHR to even greater success, and I look forward to collaborating with him in this endeavor,” Alec Scranton, dean of the College of Engineering, said.

Villarini earned a degree in civil engineering in 2003 from Universita' degli Studi di Roma "La Sapienza, and a Ph.D. on civil and environmental engineering in 2008 from the University of Iowa.


3. Electrical and Computer Engineering Students Mallaro, Sermet Featured in Dare to Discover Campaign

Two Electrical and Computer Engineering students are among the University of Iowa's new "Dare to Discover" banner campaign, being launched by the UI Vice President for Research and Economic Development Office.

They are:

Sophia Mallaro, undergraduate student, electrical and computer engineering, "Innovates in Virtual Reality," https://dare.research.uiowa.edu/mallaro-sophia/

Yusuf Sermet, Ph.D. student, electrical and computer engineering, "Deploys Artificial Intelligence," https://dare.research.uiowa.edu/sermet-yusuf/

The campaign features 65 undergraduate and graduate student researchers, scholars, and creators from across the University of Iowa.

The City of Iowa City is scheduled to install the black-and-gold banners on poles throughout downtown starting today. They will remain up through mid-March and will then move inside to the University Capitol Center through the end of the semester.

Go to https://dare.research.uiowa.edu/ to learn the stories behind all of the faces of discovery and innovation.


4. FDA to Expedite Review of IDx-DR, A Breakthrough AI Diagnostic System

IDx, a privately held AI diagnostics company, based on research conducted at the University of Iowa, has announced that it has filed its De Novo submission to the Federal Drug Administration (FDA) for IDx-DR, an IA-based system for the autonomous detection of diabetic retinopathy -- a leading cause of blindness.

The FDA has granted IDx-DR with a "Breakthrough Device" designation, which means the submission will receive expedited review.  The Breakthrough Devices program is reserved for breakthrough technologies that "provide for more effective treatment or diagnosis of life-threatening or irreversibly debilitating diseases."

If cleared by the FDA, IDX-DR is expected to become the first-of-its-kind autonomous, AI-based diagnostic system intended for use in the front lines of healthcare.

"The FDA's designation of IDx-DR as a 'breakthrough device" confirms what we have believed for a long time," Dr. Michael Abramoff, founder and president of IDx, said. "The healthcare system desperately needs a more efficient and cost-effective way to detect diabetic retinopathy.  Too many patients go blind needlessly because they aren't diagnosed in time."

In addition to his appointments as The Robert C. Watzke, MD, Professor of Retina Research and UI professor of ophthalmology and visual sciences, Abramoff also is professor of electrical and computer engineering and professor of biomedical engineering. As a practicing retina specialist at the University of Iowa Hospitals & Clinics, Abramoff knows firsthand how badly a solution like IDx-DR is needed.  He sees many patients in his clinic who are already losing their vision because disease was caught too late.

More than 30 million Americans have diabetes, and an estimated 24,000 lose vision each year from diabetic retinopathy, a complication of diabetes.  If caught in its early stages, vision loss and blindness are almost preventable, yet only about half of people with diabetes get regular eye exams.

Abramoff and his colleagues developed IDx-DR for use in the front lines of care, so that people with diabetes can have their eyes tested for diabetic retinopathy during routine office visits.  IDx hopes its technology will make early disease detection more accessible and affordable for patients.  Early detection and treatment of diabetic retinopathy has been shown to prevent vision loss according to the American Academy of Ophthalmology.

IDx-DR's proposed indications for use would enable health care providers to automatically detect more than mild diabetic retinopathy (mtm-DR) in adults with diabetes who have not been previously diagnosed with diabetic retinopathy.  The IDx-DR system, which analyzes images of the retina for signs of disease, provides instructions for follow-up care based on the level of disease detected.  IDx-DR is investigational and not yet available for sale in the U.S.

 
5. Grants and Contracts

Sylvia Secchi, associate professor, Department of Geographical and Sustainable Sciences and associate research engineer, IIHR—Hydroscience & Engineering, received a $19,585 grant from the Walton Family Foundation for “A Scorecard to Measure States’ Nutrient Reduction Strategies.

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6. College Events for the Coming Weeks

February 10 – Explore Engineering@Iowa Program, 8:00 a.m., Seamans Center. https://www.engineering.uiowa.edu/event/1049670

February 11 – WiSE (Women in Science and Engineering) STEM Extravaganza, 1:00 p.m., Kirkwood Regional Center at the University of Iowa.

February 12 – Mechanical Engineering/Industrial Engineering Graduate Seminar, 4:30-5:20 p.m., Long Classroom, 3505 Seamans Center. https://www.engineering.uiowa.edu/event/1167388

February 13 – Hawkeye Lunch & Learn, 12:00 Noon, John and Mary Pappajohn Education Center, Room 201, 1200 Grand Ave., Des Moines, IA.  Featuring H. S. Udaykumar, professor of Mechanical and Industrial Engineering. https://www.engineering.uiowa.edu/event/1120426

February 14 – Mechanical Engineering Graduate Seminar, 2:30 p.m., Long Classroom, 3505 Seamans Center. https://www.engineering.uiowa.edu/event/1163416

February 15 – Learn & Create Xpress Class, 2:00 p.m., Seamans Center, Engineering Library Creative Space. https://www.engineering.uiowa.edu/event/1166140

February 15 – Mechanical Engineering/Industrial Engineering Graduate Seminar, 3:30 p.m., Long Classroom, 3505 Seamans Center. https://www.engineering.uiowa.edu/event/1167375

February 15 – Iowa City Chamber of Commerce Annual Banquet, 5:00 p.m., Marriott Hotel & Convention Center, Coralville, IA. The banquet will feature Dan McGehee, associate professor of mechanical industrial engineering and director of the National Advanced Driving Simulator, and Karim Abdel-Malek, professor of biomedical engineering and director of the Center for Computer-Aided Design and Virtual Soldier.

February 15 – Science on Tap, 5:30 p.m., Hancher Auditorium, Stanley Café. https://www.engineering.uiowa.edu/event/1185787

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7. Alumni: Where Are They Now?

Jeff Skrentner (BSE 2005 chemical engineering, MS 2006 chemical and biochemical engineering) is corporate quality engineer at Michael Foods.

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8. About E/WEEK

E/WEEK is a weekly electronic newsletter to inform faculty, staff, and students about important news and events of The University of Iowa College of Engineering.

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