Carnegie Mellon's Philip LeDuc participates in think tank forums

November 11, 2008

PITTSBURGH--Carnegie Mellon University's Philip R. LeDuc will join more than 70 of the brightest scientific researchers Nov. 12-15 at the National Academies Keck Futures Initiative on Complexity at the Beckman Conference Center in Irvine, Calif.

Invited participants will discuss the topic of complexity in areas spanning everything from neural function to social systems and achieving a sustainable future.

"This is a great opportunity for me to interact with professionals from a broad spectrum of fields and to exchange research ideas," said LeDuc, an associate professor in mechanical engineering with a courtesy appointment in biomedical engineering and biological sciences.

The event, a joint venture between the National Academy of Science, the National Academy of Engineering and the Institute of Medicine, brings together researchers from a variety of academic disciplines, including engineering, computer science, physics, biology and chemistry.

In early November, LeDuc also was invited to attend and speak to researchers at a think tank event for the National Institute of Health's National Cancer Center about how systems such as cells and cancerous tissues in the human body may operate in a similar manner to a robotic system. These two events are focused on generating out-of-the-box thinking and approaches for taking on some of the biggest challenges in the future.

"There is going to be a lot of debate about how we will be able to approach grand challenges through non-traditional approaches. Carnegie Mellon has long been an innovator in bridging disciplines toward these ends, and this is a potential example of how approaches that were developed for systems such as robots could contribute to areas such as biology and medicine," said LeDuc, a recipient of the 2005 Beckman Award for leading-edge research in the biological and chemical sciences even though he is a mechanical engineer.

LeDuc is building tools that merge engineering technology with both scientific and commercial applications. He is using cell and molecular inspired approaches for developing new technology, probing cell and molecular biomechanics for understanding diseases, and pursuing computational methods to understand molecular behavior.

"By better understanding how cells communicate and how they use inherent systems such as feedback and redundancy to keep the cell in operation, we can begin to harness the cell's natural abilities, which may translate into exciting future technologies or approaches to fight diseases," LeDuc said.

His other accolades include winning the prestigious National Science Foundation Career Award, publishing a number of research articles in prestigious journals like Nature, Nature Nanotechnology and NanoLetters, and being a co-founder and head of missionary work in Ghana, Africa.

Prior to coming to Carnegie Mellon in 2002, LeDuc was a fellow at Harvard Medical School and Children's Hospital, where he spent time building multidisciplinary efforts between groups in biology, engineering, physics and chemistry.
-end-
About Carnegie Mellon: Carnegie Mellon is a private research university with a distinctive mix of programs in engineering, computer science, robotics, business, public policy, fine arts and the humanities. More than 10,000 undergraduate and graduate students receive an education characterized by its focus on creating and implementing solutions for real problems, interdisciplinary collaboration, and innovation. A small student-to-faculty ratio provides an opportunity for close interaction between students and professors. While technology is pervasive on its 144-acre Pittsburgh campus, Carnegie Mellon is also distinctive among leading research universities for the world-renowned programs in its College of Fine Arts. A global university, Carnegie Mellon has campuses in Silicon Valley, Calif., and Qatar, and programs in Asia, Australia and Europe. For more, see www.cmu.edu.

Department of Media Relations
Carnegie Mellon University
Alumni House
Pittsburgh, PA 15213
412-268-2900
Fax: 412-268-6929

Carnegie Mellon University

Related Engineering Articles from Brightsurf:

Re-engineering antibodies for COVID-19
Catholic University of America researcher uses 'in silico' analysis to fast-track passive immunity

Next frontier in bacterial engineering
A new technique overcomes a serious hurdle in the field of bacterial design and engineering.

COVID-19 and the role of tissue engineering
Tissue engineering has a unique set of tools and technologies for developing preventive strategies, diagnostics, and treatments that can play an important role during the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.

Engineering the meniscus
Damage to the meniscus is common, but there remains an unmet need for improved restorative therapies that can overcome poor healing in the avascular regions.

Artificially engineering the intestine
Short bowel syndrome is a debilitating condition with few treatment options, and these treatments have limited efficacy.

Reverse engineering the fireworks of life
An interdisciplinary team of Princeton researchers has successfully reverse engineered the components and sequence of events that lead to microtubule branching.

New method for engineering metabolic pathways
Two approaches provide a faster way to create enzymes and analyze their reactions, leading to the design of more complex molecules.

Engineering for high-speed devices
A research team from the University of Delaware has developed cutting-edge technology for photonics devices that could enable faster communications between phones and computers.

Breakthrough in blood vessel engineering
Growing functional blood vessel networks is no easy task. Previously, other groups have made networks that span millimeters in size.

Next-gen batteries possible with new engineering approach
Dramatically longer-lasting, faster-charging and safer lithium metal batteries may be possible, according to Penn State research, recently published in Nature Energy.

Read More: Engineering News and Engineering Current Events
Brightsurf.com is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com.