The activities of the Bioengineering and Computing Laboratory (BIC) are finalized to study the biomechanics of the musculoskeletal system by using numerical modeling at different scales, from system to micro-structure.
We work in a close collaboration with the clinics to develop personalized models from diagnostic data, and software tools supporting modeling and clinical decision making.
The strategic activities of the BiC Lab are:
- Development, validation and applications of musculoskeletal numerical models to predict muscular and joint loads, and bone mechanical strength from diagnostic imaging, in physiological and pathological conditions
- Development of software tools for computational bioengineering
- Development of Decision Support Systems for the clinics, such as solutions for surgical planning of complex skeletal reconstructions
The main clinical applications are so far:
- Prediction of risk of fracture related to pathologies compromising bone mechanical strength, mainly in the proximal femur and vertebrae;
- Analysis of function and biomechanical risk related to alteration in joint function, particularly in the hip and knee;
- Analysis of mechanical competence in large skeletal reconstructions of orthopedic oncology.
Our expertise includes consolidated modeling methods, published and, where possible, validated, with which we are able to address experimental studies facing the abovementioned clinical issues. Our numerical methods are mainly based on:
- Subject-specific Finite Element Modeling of bone and soft tissues from diagnostic imaging (e.g. CT and MRI), and in-vitro validation for comparison with experimental data;
- Multibody-dynamics models of the musculoskeletal system to predict muscle and joint forces acting on the skeletal system;
- Software development to fuse biomedical data:
- Bonemat for mapping material properties on finite element models of bone segments;
- nmsBuilder for creating subject-specific musculoskeletal models from imaging data in the OpenSim file format;
- HipOp-Plan for the surgical planning of total hip replacement based on CT images.
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