The College of Engineering was well represented at “Let’s Imagine,” Villanova’s third TEDx event held on October 23 in Driscoll Hall. C. Nataraj, PhD, the Mr. and Mrs. Robert F. Moritz Sr. Endowed Professor of Engineered Systems, and Director of the Villanova Center for Analytics of Dynamic Systems; and Benjamin Bogardus, Graduate Fellow for International Development and Sustainability in the Sustainable Engineering master’s degree program, were two of the day’s 12 presenters.
A Role for Engineers in Medical Diagnostics
In “How engineers can help doctors save lives,” Dr. Nataraj described the human body as a complex dynamic system that cannot be fully understood by conventional medical diagnostics. Given the diversity of the human race, it is difficult to define “normal,” and as a result millions of patients are incorrectly diagnosed each year, leading to unnecessary treatments and death. Dr. Nataraj believes engineers can offer a solution. “Physics, mathematics and computer algorithms can be used effectively and intelligently to make this situation a whole lot better.”
During his talk, Dr. Nataraj discussed these ideas and shared results from research he is conducting with the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia (CHOP). In collaboration with CHOP doctors, he is applying a machinery diagnostic approach to studying data on periventricular leukomalaci, a mysterious neurological damage that occurs in neonates.
Watch Nat’s TEDx talk here.