Mechanobiology: quantitative microstructural imaging and mechanics of cartilage and joints using experimental and computational approaches. (mechanobiology; quantitative; micro-computed tomography; materials testing; mechanical evaluation)
Dr Kathryn Stok (FIEAust) is a Senior Lecturer of Mechanobiology in the Department of Biomedical Engineering at the University of Melbourne, and an innovative biomedical engineer in quantitative microstructural imaging (micro-computed tomography) and biomechanics of cartilage and joint structures. She uses a variety of experimental and computational approaches. Her research work merges solid engineering approaches with biomedical advancement.
She was awarded a PhD from ETH Zurich, Switzerland in 2008. This work involved devising novel imaging and mechanical platforms for quantitative measurement of articular cartilage. In 2008, Dr Stok founded the Integrative Cartilage Research (ICR) Group at ETH Zurich, establishing industrial and clinical collaboration, winning four consortium grants, and multiple subcontracts in quantitative mechanobiology around the themes of microstructural imaging of biological tissues and organs, and characterisation (mechanical and structural) of regenerative medicine materials and tissue engineered constructs.
In September 2016, Dr Stok took up a position at the University of Melbourne to continue this work. She aims to improve mechanobiological measurement and control methods using novel imaging, mechanics and computational modelling. This involves the development of novel, in vivo, imaging-based measurement technologies for hard and soft biological tissues in 3D at different length scales. It will further enable investigation of joint health, with commercial potential in imaging, mechanobiology and biofabrication, and translation into Medtech patents and spinoffs. She Heads the Integrative Cartilage Research Group, and is a co-founder of the Melbourne School of Engineering Mechanobiology Lab in the Parkville Biomedical Precinct: www.integrativecartilageresearchgroup.com
Bachelor, Master and prospective PhD students interested in biomedical imaging, materials characterisation, tissue engineering, device design, and experimental protocol development are invited to submit an expression of interest via email.
The research work involves developing, refining, and using biomechanical engineering tools and concepts, to explore and understand the effects of mechanics on living systems on the molecular, cellular, and organ level of organisation, while maintaining a philosophy of respect and compassion for all human and animal life.
A successful applicant must be a keen learner, creative, possess effective written and oral communication skills in English, have good time management skills, be willing to perform and/or be involved with testing of human and animal biological specimens, and most importantly have a competence for working in an international and dynamic team environment.