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ME/CS 571: Surgical Robotics Seminar
ME 328: Medical Robotics

Prof. Arianna Menciassi

Friday, November 4
9:30-10:20 am
Bldg. 530, Room 127

This seminar is open to the public. Students in ME 328 and CS/ME 571 are required to attend.

Seminar Topic: Robotic technologies, micro-technologies and targeted therapy: challenges and opportunities

Robotic manipulators have been introduced for the first time in surgery in 1985, when a Puma 560 was used by Kwoh for performing neurosurgical biopsies with high precision. After that milestone, robots and robotic technologies have gained an increasingly important role in surgery, thanks to the accuracy and repeatability they could add to surgical tasks. From the original task of increasing accuracy and repeatability, robots today are asked to do more: they should be un-intrusive and flexible in terms of sharing control with human operators, they should perform better some tasks and they should reach areas normally not reachable by traditional surgical solutions. This talk introduces the key aspects of targeted therapy starting from the speaker experience on robotics for minimally invasive and computer assisted surgery. The quest for miniaturization and natural access to the targeted pathologies led to the development of diagnostic and surgical tools to be delivered with an endoluminal and transluminal approach - such as endoscopic capsules - and to be controlled and propelled by remote operation schemes from outside. In addition to the traditional control of remote devices into the body, external sources, such as magnetic fields, ultrasound waves or laser beams, have been used for stimulating internal devices and triggering some therapeutic effects from outside, in a non-invasive way. The quest for targeted therapy has recently opened new opportunities for robotic technologies, which are used more and more as controllers for the delivery of drugs embedded in nanobiotech vectors and as solutions for making therapy really localized in the area of interest, enabling on-demand release kinetics and eliminating (or strongly limiting) side effects. This talk aims to present the above mentioned trends, with the support of specific examples coming from the speaker experience and her collaboration network.

Speaker Bio

Arianna Menciassi obtained the M.Sc. in Physics from the University of Pisa in 1995 (magna cum Laude) and the Ph.D. in Bioengineering from the Scuola Superiore Sant'Anna (SSSA) in 1999. In the year 2000 she started her academic career at the SSSA with an untenured position of Assistant Professor of Biomedical Robotics and she became Associate Professor of Industrial Bioengineering in 2006 and Full Professor in May 2014. Currently, she is with The BioRobotics Institute of the SSSA where she is Area Leader of "Surgical Robotics and Allied Technologies". Prof. Menciassi teaches regularly at the Scuola Superiore Sant'Anna (courses for undergraduated students of Medicine and Engineering) and at the Pisa University (Master Degree in Biomedical Engineering, International Master Degree in Bionics Engineering). She carries on an intense research and training activity at high level (master candidates in biomedical engineering, PhD students, etc.). From April 2013 she is Vice-Dean of the "Classe di Scienze Sperimentali" of SSSA. From Sept. 2013 to Dec. 2014 she spent some Visiting Professor periods at the Ecole Nationale Superiorieure de Mecaniques et des Microtechniques (ENSMM) of Besancon (France), in the FEMTO Institute, and at the Universite Pierre Marie Curie in Paris, France. Her main research interests involve biomedical robotics, microsystem technology, nanotechnology and micromechatronics, with a special attention to the synergy between robot-assisted therapy and micro/nanotechnology-related solutions. She carries on an important activity of scientific management of several projects, European and extra-European, thus implying many collaborations abroad. She is co-author of more than 320 scientific publications (from SCOPUS database: 186 journal papers, 135 conference papers, 14 review papers - more than 150 papers published on ISI journals) and 6 book chapters on biomedical robots/devices and microtechnology. She is also inventor of 35 patents, national and international. She served until August 2103 in the Editorial Board of the IEEE-ASME Trans. on Mechatronics and she is now Topic Editor in Medical Robotics of the International Journal of Advanced Robotic Systems; she is Co-Chair of the IEEE-RAS Technical Committee on Surgical Robotics. She is involved in the BioRobotics Technical Committee of IEEE-EMBC. She is NTC (Nanotechnology Technical Committee) representative in the steering committee of the IEEE Transactions on Nanobioscience. She is IEEE Senior Member. In the year 2007, she received the Well-tech Award (Milan, Italy) for her researches on endoscopic capsules, and she was awarded by the Tuscany Region with the Gonfalone D'Argento, as one of the best 10 young talents of the region.