One of the Grand Challenges in Engineering is to engineer better medicines, which still has many unresolved and ongoing challenges in materials and biomedical systems. These challenges should be addressed by combined efforts and expertise in materials, nanoengineering, physiology, electronics, informatics, and human-centric designs.

Stem cells and bioreactor sensor
Nanomaterial-based implantable stent

Materials for Biomedical Systems (MBS) is a newly established research initiative in the Georgia Tech Institute for Materials (IMat) created to address this challenge.  MBS’s overarching vision is to enhance human health via multidisciplinary materials research. This will bring a unique opportunity to Georgia Tech to tackle the healthcare grand challenge by creating collaborative research environments between materials science and engineering and medicine. This will result in fundamental breakthroughs in bioinspired materials, human-centered designs, and integrated biomedical systems, which will significantly advance human healthcare (see the figure below).

The MBS initiative, led by W. Hong Yeo and his team, brings together researchers from multiple institutes and centers at Georgia Tech, including IMat and the Parker H. Petit Institute for Bioengineering and Bioscience. It connects faculty members with industry partners and hospitals, as well as faculty from the Emory School of Medicine, Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta, and researchers from Georgia Tech Research Institute. The MBS initiative will study interdisciplinary fundamental science in materials and integrated materials engineering to develop innovative biomedical systems for bridging gaps in materials research and bioengineering systems. This initiative will build an inclusive culture and interdisciplinary research ecosystem across and beyond Georgia Tech while targeting large-scale extramural center funding and developing industry consortia. A key goal of the MBS initiative will be to integrate fundamental science and engineering knowledge in faculty, researchers, and clinicians to develop new biomedical systems which will identify and solve existing technical challenges and limitations in medicine. The multi-school, multi-investigator, interdisciplinary initiative will collectively broaden the Institute for Materials’ portfolio in materials and engineering systems.