Orthopaedic Bioengineering Research Laboratory (OBRL)

Our bodies are machines for living. – Leo Tolstoy

The application of solid mechanics to the field of medicine has greatly increased our knowledge of orthopedic pathologies and lead to some of the most successful treatments and implants used in surgery.  This is especially relevant in contemporary society because of the aging population will exponentially  increase the incidence and complication of orthopaedic conditions.  The mission of CSU’s Orthopaedic Bioengineering Research Laboratory (OBRL) is to significantly impact the practice of orthopaedic surgery through basic science discovery and highly translational research.

The OBRL uses both state-of-the-art computational (such as finite element)and experimental (such as biaxial tension)techniques to study the mechanical etiology of orthopaedic disease states, and, using this information, design effective treatment strategies.  The OBRL is co-located and closely aligned with CSU’s Veterinary Teaching Hospital and their clinical faculty to facilitate the bench top-to-clinic translation of our research.

These research activities have been recognized by the awarding of major federal grants (by the National Institutes of Health and the National Aeronautic and Space Administration) and national awards.  In addition, we work closely with many of the major orthopaedic companies.  As an example of our work, recent CSU Mechanical Engineering Ph.D. student Kevin Troyer developed  a fully non-linear and computationally tractable viscoelastic formulation to describe the time-dependent behavior of orthopaedic soft tissues (such as ligament and tendon).  His dissertation project led to the publication of no less than 5 manuscripts in some of the leading biomechanics journals.