Document Type


Date of Award

Fall 1-27-2008

Degree Name

Master of Science in Biomedical Engineering - (M.S.)


Biomedical Engineering

First Advisor

Bryan J. Pfister

Second Advisor

Richard A. Foulds

Third Advisor

Max Roman

Fourth Advisor

Lisa Schmidt


Most diffuse brain injury is the result of uni-axial stretch of brain axons in traumatic brain injury. Traumatic injury to axons throughout the brain and is believed to be a major cause for coma, and other complications. Diffuse axonal injury is mostly multi-focal and appears throughout the deep cortical and sub-cortical regions.

Several models have tried to replicate this phenomenon. Previous models, like the Penn model, have lower throughput as they conduct experiments on one well at a time, and it has lower reproducibility as well. The other problem with these models is that they are not very user friendly, and extensive experience is required to get some consistence in the results.

The goal of this project is to create a high throughput, cost effective, and user friendly, in-vitro model for uni-axial stretch of axons to simulate the effect of TBI on the neurons of the brain. My endeavor is to create an in-vitro model for uni-axial stretch of axons to namely a “Multi-Well Axonal Stretch Injury Device" to induce strains or stretch rates in the magnitude of 10% to 80% on axons to simulate mild to moderate to severe traumatic brain injury. The cells used for primary experimentation will be the NG-108 cell lines. This project will include the design, development and testing procedure for this device. Both mechanical characterization and biological viability studies will be conducted to test the device.