With this series of interviews, we want to help VPHi's members get to know one another and involve more and more students in this group, contributing significantly to the Institute's life and the in silico community!
1. Tell us something about yourself!
If someone asks me to introduce myself, I will say that my name is Mojtaba, and I'm passionate about the computational world. To go further, I can say I live currently in Leuven, Belgium (and also in Eindhoven, the Netherlands) and work as a PhD researcher at KU Leuven in the field of Computational Biomechanics and Computational Tissue Engineering.
2. How did you first get involved with the know VPHi? What is the most significant added value of being a VPHi student member?
My supervisor, Prof. Liesbet Geris, is currently the Executive Director of VPHi, so I heard about VPHi from the very beginning days of my PhD :).
I think being a member of the student committee can provide me with an opportunity to get in touch and communicate with the top senior researchers in my field, which helps me to broaden my communication/collaboration skills and connections.
3. Can you describe your PhD research work in 3 sentences?
Yes, I can :). In recent decades, there has been an emerging demand for implants and devices that can get absorbed by the body, which are called biodegradable materials. Besides toxicity and compatibility concerns, it’s also important to check if the device or implant degrades the same way we want it to. In my work, I am studying the biodegradation behavior of these materials inside the body and the response of the body tissues to them using mathematical and computational methods.
4. What is the expected outcome you would like to achieve?
Having a model for biodegradation enables us to test a wide variety of different scenarios in a short amount of time, which would take so long to be tested experimentally. We are currently developing the model to make it more comprehensive, paving the way for designing the next generation of bioresorbable medical devices more efficiently.
5. Have you already published any papers as part of your research work? Or have you reached any results that make you proud?
Yes, I’m very proud of the model I have developed since there has been a couple of computational disciplines applied to it, including high-performance computing (HPC) approaches to make the model capable of being run on thousands of CPU cores to reduce the time needed to have results and predictions. I have published 3 papers so far, and because I am currently in the 4th year of my PhD, I think I should write 1 or 2 more besides preparing my thesis.
More info on the student committee can be found here: www.vph-institute.org/student-committee.html