Biomedical Engineering - Carnegie Mellon University

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Undergraduate Course Catalog (Classes of 2020 and Onward)

Biomedical Engineering Core Courses

03-121 Modern Biology | 9 units | Fall and Spring
This is an introductory course that provides the basis for further studies in biochemistry, cell biology, genetics and molecular biology. This course emphasizes the chemical principles underlying biological processes and cell structures as well as the analysis of genetics and heredity from a molecular perspective. This is the introductory biology course for all science and non-science majors. Students wishing to use AP credit must have a 5 on the AP exam and pass a mastery exam given by the Department of Biological Sciences. 3 hrs. lecture.
Pre-requisite: None.
Anti-requisite: 03-151 [Top]

03-151 Honors Modern Biology | 10 units | Fall
This course will cover in some depth, the basics of the structure and function of the major biomolecules in the cell, cellular structure and function, genetic replication, transmission and expression of biological information, and cell-cell interactions. While similar core topics will be covered in all sections of Modern Biology, this section will be offered at an accelerated pace, requiring more independent learning. The extra class time this pacing provides will allow the exploration of the molecular basis of life to help students integrate and apply the core principles of biology covered in the course.
Pre-requisite: None.
Anti-requisite: 03-121 [Top]

42-101 Introduction to Biomedical Engineering | 12 units | Fall and Spring
Syllabus: 42-101
This course will provide exposure to basic biology and engineering problems associated with living systems and health care delivery. Examples will be used to illustrate how basic concepts and tools of science & engineering can be brought to bear in understanding, mimicking and utilizing biological processes. The course will focus on four areas: biotechnology, biomechanics, biomaterials and tissue engineering and bioimaging and will introduce the basic life sciences and engineering concepts associated with these topics.
Pre-requisite or co-requisite: 03-121.

42-201 Professional Issues in Biomedical Engineering | 3 units | Fall and Spring
Syllabus: 42-201
This course helps students learn to understand technical and professional challenges biomedical engineers face. First, it introduces students to applications of technology in medicine and biology. Second, it provides an overview of professional topics involving bioethics, regulatory issues, communication skills, team work, and contemporary issues. Outside speakers describe real world problems and professional issues in biotechnology and bioengineering, and progress toward their solution. Students have the opportunity to visit state-of-the-art laboratories in such areas as bioimaging, musculoskeletal biomechanics, rapid prototyping and manufacturing, and cardiac assist devices.
Pre-requisite: 42-101 or permission of instructor.

42-202 Physiology | 9 units | Fall and Spring
Syllabus: 42-202
This course is an introduction to human physiology and includes units on all major organ systems. Particular emphasis is given to the musculoskeletal, cardiovascular, respiratory, digestive, excretory, and endocrine systems. Modules on molecular physiology, tissue engineering and physiological modeling are also included. Due to the close interrelationship between structure and function in biological systems, each functional topic will be introduced through a brief exploration of anatomical structure. Basic physical laws and principles will be explored as they relate to physiologic function.
Pre-requisite: 03-121 or permission of instructor.

42-203/03-206 Biomedical Engineering Laboratory | 9 units | Fall and Spring
Syllabus: 42-203
This laboratory course is designed to provide students with the ability to make measurements on and interpret data from living systems. The experimental modules reinforce concepts from 42-101 Introduction to Biomedical Engineering and expose students to four areas of biomedical engineering: bioimaging, biomaterials, biomechanics, and cellular and molecular biotechnology. Several cross-cutting modules are included as well. The course includes weekly lectures to complement the experimental component.
Students who have declared the Additional Major in Biomedical Engineering and who have registered with the Carnegie Mellon Health Professions Program should register for 03-206 instead of 42-203, which would count as fulfilling the requirement of both Biomedical Engineering additional major and medical school admission standard.
Pre-requisites: 42-101 and 03-121. HPP students should register for the cross-listed course 03-206. [Top]

42-302 Systems Modeling and Analysis for Biomedical Engineering | 9 units | Fall
This course is designed to enable students to develop mathematical models for biological systems and for biomedical engineering systems, devices, components, and processes and to use models for data reduction and for system performance analysis, prediction and optimization. Models considered will be drawn from a broad range of applications and will be based on algebraic equations, ordinary differential equations and partial differential equations. The tools of advanced engineering mathematics comprising analytical, computational and statistical approaches will be introduced and used for model manipulation.
Pre-requisite: Junior of senior. [Top]

42-401 Foundations of Biomedical Engineering Design | 6 units | Fall
Syllabus: 42-401
This course introduces Biomedical Engineering students to the design of useful biomedical products. Students will learn to identify product needs, how to specify problem definitions and to use project management tools. Methods to develop creativity in design will be introduced. Students will form project teams and select a project to be completed during the following semester in 42-402. This course culminates in the completion of a design brief.
Pre-requisite: Senior standing in Biomedical Engineering.
Co-requisite: 42-101. [Top]

42-402 Biomedical Engineering Design Project | 9 units | Spring
Syllabus: 42-402
This course focuses on integrated product development for biomedical products. Teams will consist of a variety of Biomedical Engineering students. The course consists of modules including the development of a project plan, background research, hazard analysis, setting product specifications based on user requirements, detailed design and analysis, prototype development and final documentation and presentation. Additional relevant professional development topics are also covered, including technical public speaking, proposal preparation, personal time management, and other topics. All products eveloped will respond to the needs of appropriate market segments; resulting products will be deemed safe, effective, useful, usable and desirable by those segments. Students will produce a form model, functional prototype, marketing plan, and manufacturing plan of their product.
Pre-requisite: 42-401. [Top]

Track Elective Courses (Class of 2020 and Onward)

42-200 Sophomore Biomedical Engineering Research Project | 3-12 units | Fall and Spring
(All Tracks; must take 9 or more units to count as a track elective course)
Research projects under the direction of a regular or courtesy Biomedical Engineering faculty member. Arrangements may also be made via the Associate Head of Biomedical Engineering for off-campus projects at local hospitals provided that a regular or courtesy Biomedical Engineering faculty member agrees to serve as a co-advisor. The nature of the project, the number of units and the criteria for grading are to be determined between the student and the research advisor. The agreement should be summarized in a one-page project description with sign-off by the research advisor and a copy submitted for review and filing to the student’s academic advisor. A final written report or oral presentation of the results is required. Units may vary from 3 to 12 according to the expected time commitment. [Top]

42-300 Junior Biomedical Engineering Research Project | 3-12 units | Fall and Spring
(All Tracks; must take 9 or more units to count as a track elective course)
Research projects under the direction of a regular or courtesy Biomedical Engineering faculty member. Arrangements may also be made via the Associate Head of Biomedical Engineering for off-campus projects at local hospitals provided that a regular or courtesy Biomedical Engineering faculty member agrees to serve as a co-advisor. The nature of the project, the number of units and the criteria for grading are to be determined between the student and the research advisor. The agreement should be summarized in a one-page project description with sign-off by the research advisor and a copy submitted for review and filing to the student’s academic advisor. A final written report or oral presentation of the results is required. Units may vary from 3 to 12 according to the expected time commitment. [Top]

42-341/24-334 Introduction to Biomechanics | 9 units | Fall
(BMEC Track Elective)
This course covers the application of solid and fluid mechanics to living tissues. This includes the mechanical properties and behavior of individual cells, the heart, blood vessels, the lungs, bone, muscle and connective tissues as well as methods for the analysis of human motion.
Pre-requisites: Fluid mechanics via either 24-231, 06-261, or 12-355. [Top]

42-400 Senior Biomedical Engineering Research Project | 3-12 units | Fall and Spring
(All Tracks; must take 9 units to count as a track elective course)
Research projects under the direction of a regular or courtesy Biomedical Engineering faculty member. Arrangements may also be made via the Associate Head of Biomedical Engineering for off-campus projects at local hospitals provided that a regular or courtesy Biomedical Engineering faculty member agrees to serve as a co-advisor. The nature of the project, the number of units and the criteria for grading are to be determined between the student and the research advisor. The agreement should be summarized in a one-page project description with sign-off by the research advisor and a copy submitted for review and filing to the student’s academic advisor. A final written report or oral presentation of the results is required. Units may vary from 3 to 12 according to the expected time commitment. [Top]

42-411/27-411 Engineering Biomaterials | 9 units | Fall
(BMTE Track Elective)
Syllabus: 42-411
This course will cover structure-processing-property relationships in biomaterials for use in medicine. This course will focus on quantitative aspects of biomaterials design. Topics of study include surfaces, thermodynamics, receptor-binding kinetics, quantitative analysis of cell behavior, and transport phenomena. This course will discuss practical applications of these materials in medical devices, drug delivery, tissue engineering, biosensors, etc.
Pre-requisite: 06-221, 24-221, 27-215 or equivalent; senior in CIT or permission of instructor. [Top]

42-426 Biosensors and BioMEMS | 9 units | Intermittent
(CMBT Track Elective)
This course emphasizes the principles of biomolecule-based sensing, including molecular recognition, biomolecular binding kinetics and equilibrium; methods of detection and signal transduction, including optical, colorimetric, fluorescence, potentiometric, and gravimetric techniques; statistical principles of high throughput screening; microfluidic and microarray device design principles and fabrication technologies; molecular motors.
Pre-requisite: 03-231 Biochemistry or 03-232 Biochemistry. [Top]

42-444 Medical Devices | 9 units | Fall and Spring
(BMEC Track Elective)
Syllabus: 42-444
This course is an introduction to the engineering, clinical, legal and regulatory aspects of medical device performance and failure. Topics covered include a broad survey of the thousands of successful medical devices in clinical use, as well as historical case studies of devices that were withdrawn from the market. In-depth study of specific medical devices will include: cardiovascular medicine (pacemakers, heart valves, vascular grafts, heart-assist pumps..), orthopedics (fixation devices, prostheses…), and general medicine (defibrillators, blood pressure cuffs, stethoscopes…) We will study the principles of operation (with hands-on examples), design evolution, and modes of failure. Additional lectures will provide basic information concerning biomaterials used for implantable medical devices (metals, polymers, ceramics) and their biocompatibility, mechanisms of failure (wear, corrosion, fatigue, fretting, etc.). Guest lectures will be provided by practicing engineers from regional medical device companies to provide real-world perspective of the development process.
In addition to a mid-term and final exam covering topics presented in class, students will prepare a written report that critically investigates a particular medical device that has been recalled by the FDA, of the student’s choosing. The report will include the design history, engineering analysis, and recommendations for future improvements (re-design). [Students enrolled in 42-744 will also be required to produce a lo-fi prototype, which they will present in class at the end of the semester.]
The ultimate objectives of this course are to (1) provide students with a broad understanding of the medical device industry, (2) stimulate critical analysis of medical device design, and (3) convey practical knowledge and skills that are valuable for a future career in the medical device industry.
Pre-requisite: Junior standing or higher for MCS and CIT students. For non- MCS or CIT graduate students, a degree in a science or engineering. For all other students, permission of the instructor. [Top]

42-474 Introduction to Biophotonics | 9 units | Fall
(BSIP Track Elective)
Biophotonics, or biomedical optics, is a field dealing with the application of optical science and imaging technology to biomedical problems, including clinical applications. The course introduces basic concepts in electromagnetism and light tissue interactions, including optical properties of tissue, absorption, fluorescence, and light scattering. Imaging methods will be described, including fluorescence imaging, Raman spectroscopy, optical coherence tomography, diffuse optical spectroscopy, and photoacoustic tomography. The basic physics and engineering of each imaging technique are emphasized. Their relevance to human disease diagnostic and clinical applications will be included, such as breast cancer imaging and monitoring, 3D retinal imaging, ways of non-invasive tumor detection, as well as functional brain imaging in infants.
Pre-requisite: 33-107 Physics II for Engineering Students or permission of the instructor. [Top]

42-612/27-520 Tissue Engineering | 12 units | Spring
(BMTE Track Elective)
Syllabus: 42-612
This course will train students in advanced cellular and tissue engineering methods that apply physical, mechanical and chemical manipulation of materials in order to direct cell and tissue function. Students will learn the techniques and equipment of bench research including cell culture, immunofluorescent imaging, soft lithography, variable stiffness substrates, application/measurement of forces and other methods. Students will integrate classroom lectures and lab skills by applying the scientific method to develop a unique project while working in a team environment, keeping a detailed lab notebook and meeting mandated milestones. Emphasis will be placed on developing the written and oral communication skills required of the professional scientist. The class will culminate with a poster presentation session based on class projects.
Pre-requisite: Knowledge in cell biology and biomaterials, or permission of instructor. [Top]

42-613/27-570 Molecular and Micro-Scale Polymeric Biomaterials in Medicine | 9 units | Spring, every other year
(BMTE Track Elective)
This course will cover aspects of polymeric biomaterials in medicine from molecular principles to device scale design and fabrication. Topics include the chemistry, characterization, and processing of synthetic polymeric materials; cell-biomaterials interactions including interfacial phenomena, tissue responses, and biodegradation mechanisms; aspects of polymeric micro-systems design and fabrication for applications in medical devices. Recent advances in these topics will also be discussed.
Pre-requisite: 09-217 Organic Chemistry I or 09-219 Modern Organic Chemistry. [Top]

42-620 Engineerng Molecular Cell Biology | 12 units | Fall
(BMTE or CMBT Track Elective)
Cells are not only basic units of living organisms but also fascinating engineering systems that exhibit amazing functionality, adaptability, and complexity. Applying engineering perspectives and approaches to study molecular mechanisms of cellular processes plays a critical role in the development of contemporary biology. At the same time, understanding the principles that govern biological systems provides critical insights into the development of engineering systems, especially in the micro- and nano-technology. The goal of this course is to provide basic molecular cell biology for engineering students with little or no background in cell biology, with particular emphasis on the application of quantitative and system perspectives to basic cellular processes. Course topics include the fundamentals of molecular biology, the structural and functional organization of the cell, the cytoskeleton and cell motility, the mechanics of cell division, and cell-cell interactions.
Pre-requisites: 21-260 or 06-262 or 18-202. Advanced undergraduate or graduate student standing is required. Prior completion of 03-121 is suggested but not required. Proficiency in basic computation such as MATLAB programming is expected. [Top]

42-622/06-622 Bioprocess Design | 9 units | Spring, intermittent
(CMBT Track Elective)
This course is designed to link concepts of cell culture, bioseparations, formulation and delivery together for the commercial production and use of biologically-based pharmaceuticals; products considered include proteins, nucleic acids, and fermentation-derived fine chemicals. Associated regulatory issues and biotech industry case studies are also included. The format of the course is a mixture of equal parts lecture, open discussion and participant presentation. Course work consists of team-oriented problem sets of an open ended nature and individual-oriented industry case studies. The goals of the course are to build an integrated, technical knowledge base of the manufacture of biologically based pharmaceuticals and the US biotechnology industry. Working knowledge of basic cell and modern biology, biochemistry, and differential equations/partial differential equations is assumed.
Pre-requisite: 42-623 or both 03-232 and 06-422, or instructor permission. [Top]

42-623 Cellular and Molecular Biotechnology | 9 units | Fall, intermittent
(CMBT Track Elective)
Syllabus: 42-623
This course provides the student with an introduction to biotechnology in an engineering context. The focus will be on using microorganisms to prepare therapeutically and technologically relevant biochemicals. Topics to be covered include cellular and microbial metabolism, recombinant DNA methodologies, bioreactor design, protein separation and purification, and systems approaches to biotechnology.
Pre-requisites: (42-202 or 03-121 or 03-232) and (06-262 or 21-260) or permission of instructor. [Top]

42-624 Biological Transport and Drug Delivery | 9 units | Spring
(CMBT or BMTE Track Elective)
Analysis of transport phenomena in life processes on the molecular, cellular, organ and organism levels and their application to the modeling and design of targeted or sustained release drug delivery technologies. Coupling of mass transfer and reaction processes will be a consistent theme as they are applied to rates of receptor-mediated solute uptake in cells, drug transport and biodistribution, and drug release from delivery vehicles. Design concepts underlying new advances in nanomedicine will be described.
Pre-requisite: 06-262 or 21-260 [Top]

42-630/18-690 Introduction to Neuroscience for Engineers | 12 units | Spring
(BSIP Track Elective)
The first half of the course will introduce engineers to the neurosciences from the cellular level to the structure and function of the central nervous system (CNS) vis-a-vis the peripheral nervous system (PNS) and include a study of basic neurophysiology; the second half of the course will review neuroengineering methods and technologies that enable study of and therapeutic solutions for diseases or damage to the CNS. A goal of this course is to provide a taxonomy of neuroengineering technologies for research or clinical application in the neurosciences.
Pre-requisites: 42-101 or 18-100. [Top]

42-631 Neural Data Analysis | 12 units | Fall
(BSIP Track Elective)
The vast majority of behaviorally relevant information is transmitted through the brain by neurons as trains of actions potentials. How can we understand the information being transmitted? This class will cover the basic engineering and statistical tools in common use for analyzing neural spike train data, with an emphasis on hands-on application. Topics will include neural spike train statistics, estimation theory (MLE, MAP), signal detection theory (d-prime, ROC analysis), information theory (entropy, mutual information, neural coding theories, spike-distance metrics), discrete classification (naïve Bayes), continuous decoding (PVA, OLE, Kalman), and white-noise analysis. Each topic covered will be linked back to the central ideas from undergraduate probability, and each assignment will involve actual analysis of neural data, either real or simulated, using Matlab. This class is meant for upper-level undergraduates or beginning graduate students, and is geared to the engineer who wants to learn the neurophysiologist's toolbox and the neurophysiologist who wants to learn new tools.
Pre-requisites: undergraduate probability (36-217 or 36-225, or equivalent). [Top]

42-632/18-698 Neural Signal Processing | 12 units | Spring
(BSIP Track Elective)
Syllabus: 42-632
The brain is among the most complex systems ever studied. Underlying the brain's ability to process sensory information and drive motor actions is a network of 10^11 neurons, each making 10^3 connections with other neurons. Modern statistical and machine learning tools are needed to interpret the plethora of neural data being collected, both for (1) furthering our understanding of how the brain works, and (2) designing biomedical devices that interface with the brain. This course will cover a range of statistical methods and their application to neural data analysis. The statistical topics include latent variable models, dynamical systems, point processes, dimensionality reduction, Bayesian inference, and spectral analysis. The neuroscience applications include neural decoding, firing rate estimation, neural system characterization, sensorimotor control, spike sorting, and field potential analysis.
Pre-requisites: 18-290 for ECE students; 36-217, or equivalent introductory probability theory and random variables course; an introductory linear algebra course; senior or graduate standing. No prior knowledge of neuroscience is needed. [Top]

42-640/24-658 Computational Bio-Modeling and Visualization | 12 units | Spring
(BSIP or BMEC Track Elective)
Syllabus: 42-640
Biomedical modeling and visualization play an important role in mathematical modeling and computer simulation of real/artificial life for improved medical diagnosis and treatment. This course integrates mechanical engineering, biomedical engineering, computer science, and mathematics together. Topics to be studied include medical imaging, image processing, geometric modeling, visualization, computational mechanics, and biomedical applications. The techniques introduced are applied to examples of multi-scale biomodeling and simulations at the molecular, cellular, tissue, and organ level scales.
Pre-requisite: none. [Top]

42-643/24-615/06-623 Microfluidics | 12 units | Intermittent
(CMBT, BMTE, or BMEC Track Elective)
This course offers an introduction to the emerging field of microfluidics with an emphasis on chemical and life sciences applications. During this course students will examine the fluid dynamical phenomena underlying key components of “lab on a chip” devices. Students will have the opportunity to learn practical aspects of microfluidic device operation through hands-on laboratory experience, computer simulations of microscale flows, and reviews of recent literature in the field. Throughout the course, students will consider ways of optimizing device performance based on knowledge of the fundamental fluid mechanics. Students will explore selected topics in more detail through a semester project. Major course topics include pressure-driven and electrokinetically-driven flows in microchannels, surface effects, micro-fabrication methods, micro/nanoparticles for biotechnology, biochemical reactions and assays, mixing and separation, two-phase flows, and integration and design of microfluidic chips.
Pre-requisites: 24-231 or 06-261 or 12-355 or instructor permission. [Top]

42-645/24-655 Cellular Biomechanics | 9 units | Fall, every other year
(CMBT or BMEC Track Elective)
Syllabus: 42-645
This course discusses how mechanical quantities and processes such as force, motion, and deformation influence cell behavior and function, with a focus on the connection between mechanics and biochemistry. Specific topics include: (1) the role of stresses in the cytoskeleton dynamics as related to cell growth, spreading, motility, and adhesion; (2) the generation of force and motion by moot molecules; (3) stretch-activated ion channels; (4) protein and DNA deformation; (5) mechanochemical coupling in signal transduction. If time permits, we will also cover protein trafficking and secretion and the effects of mechanical forces on gene expression. Emphasis is placed on the biomechanics issues at the cellular and molecular levels; their clinical and engineering implications are elucidated. 3 hours lecture.
Pre-requisite: Instructor permission. [Top]

42-646/06-646/24-657 Molecular Biomechanics | 9 units | Spring, every other year
(CMBT or BMEC Track Elective)
Syllabus: 42-646
This class is designed to present concepts of molecular biology, cellular biology and biophysics at the molecular level together with applications. Emphasis will be placed both on the biology of the system and on the fundamental physics, chemistry and mechanics which describe the molecular level phenomena within context. In addition to studying the structure, mechanics and energetics of biological systems at the nano-scale, we will also study and conceptually design biomimetic molecules and structures. Fundamentals of DNA, globular and structured proteins, lipids and assemblies thereof will be covered.
Pre-requisite: Thermodynamics (06-221 or 24-221) or instructor permission. [Top]

42-647/24-659 Continuum Biomechanics: Solid and Fluid Mechanics of Physiological Systems| 12 units | Spring
(BMEC Track Elective)
This course provides a general survey of the application of continuum mechanics to biomechanics. The objective of this course is to provide the basic ideas of continuum mechanics for engineering and science students with little or no background in biomechanics, with particular emphasis on the application of quantitative and system perspectives to fluid and solid mechanics problems. The course begins with a historical review of the subject followed by a review of vector and tensor analysis, before discussing various measures of deformation and stress formulations. The development and understanding of appropriate constitutive models for particular problems are emphasized. Both analytical and experimental results are presented through readings from recent literature and the relevance of these results to the solution of unsolved problems is highlighted. The course encourages class participation and discussion in a seminar fashion and includes individually-crafted research projects that will be discussed in class.
Pre-requisites: 21-260 or 06-262 or permission of instructor. Knowledge in mechanics of deformable solids (24-202) and fluid mechanics desirable but not required. [Top]

42-648 Cardiovascular Mechanics | 12 units | Spring
(BMEC Track Elective)
Syllabus: 42-648
The primary objective of the course is to teach how to model blood flow and mechanical forces in the cardiovascular system and medical devices. After a brief review of cardiovascular physiology and fluid mechanics, the course will progress from modeling blood flow and mechanical forces in a.) small-scale steady flow applications to b.) small-scale pulsatile applications to c.) large-scale or complex pulsatile flow applications. The course will also discuss how to calculate mechanical forces on cardiovascular tissue (blood vessels, the heart) and cardiovascular cells (endothelial cells, platelets, red and white blood cells), and the effects of those forces. Lastly, the course will focus on the biomechanical issues present in selected medical devices (heart valves, ventricular assist devices, artificial lungs).
Pre-requisite: 42-101 Introduction to Biomedical Engineering, 42-202 Physiology, and a fluid mechanics course as the BMEC Gateway. [Top]

42-661 Surgery for Engineers | 9 units | Spring
This course explores the impact of engineering on surgery. Students will interact with clinical practitioners and investigate the technological challenges that face these practitioners. A number of visits to the medical center are anticipated for hands on experience with a number of technologies utilized by surgeons to demonstrate the result of advances in biomedical engineering. These experiences are expected to include microvascular surgery, robotic surgery, laparoscopic, and endoscopic techniques. Tours of the operating room and shock trauma unit will be arranged. If possible observation of an operative procedure will be arranged (if scheduling permits). Invited surgeons will represent disciplines including cardiovascular surgery, plastic and reconstructive surgery, surgical oncology, trauma surgery, minimally invasive surgery, oral and maxillofacial surgery, bariatric surgery, thoracic surgery, orthopedic surgery, and others. Specific engineering topics which may be relevant to each of these specialties as well as topics which span many specialties (for example imaging, biomaterials, biomechanics, etc) will be presented by various faculty members of the CMU Biomedical Engineering dept. Students will self-select into teams and present a broad topic overview that will augment the clinical speaker’s presentation. The topics and teams will be finalized on the first day of class and can be tailored to reflect the specific interests of the class but might include topics such as: pump functions of the heart, compliance of the vascular system, electrical map and function of the heart, surgical approaches to cancer, etc. A final paper/presentation will identify an unsolved surgical problem and a potential bioengineered solution for the problem. The possibility to extend this effort into an independent research endeavor will be discussed.
The Primary Instructor is Howard Edington, M.D., MBA System Chairman of Surgery, Allegheny Health Network. This course meets once a week for 3 hours. Several sessions will be held at the Medical Center, transport provided.
Pre-requisite: Physiology 42-202 and one of the introductory engineering courses, 42-101, 06-100, 12-100. 18-100, 19-101, 24-101, or 27-100 [Top]

42-664 Bioinstrumentation | 9 Units | Intermittent
(BSIP Track Elective; Students in Other Tracks May Take This Course as a Restrictive Elective)
This course aims to build the foundation of basic principles, applications and design of bioinstrumentation. Topics covered include biosignals recording, transducers for biomedical application, action potentials EMG, EEG, ECG, amplifiers and signal processing, blood flow and pressure measurements, data acquisition and signal conditioning, spectral analysis of data, filtering, and safety aspects of electrical measurements. Ultimately, students will learn (1) how to apply basic circuit theory to perform measurement of biosignals, (2) be familiar and use common measurement devices, such as multimeter and oscilloscope, (3) be familiar with Op-amps circuits, (4) how to acquire and analyze a signal using time and frequency techniques, and (5) how to filter a signal to remove noise.
Pre-requisite:
33-107. [Top]

42-670 Biomaterial Host Interactions in Regenerative Medicine | 12 units | Fall
(BMTE Track Elective)
This course will provide students with hands-on experience in investigating host responses to synthetic and naturally biomaterials used in regenerative medicine applications. Students will gain experience in the analysis of host responses to these biomaterials as well as strategies to control host interaction. Biomaterial biocompatibility, immune interactions, tissue healing and regeneration will be addressed. Students will integrate classroom lectures with laboratory skills evaluating host-material interactions in a laboratory setting. Laboratory characterization techniques will include cell culture techniques, microscopic, cytochemical, immunocytochemical and histological analyses. Prerequisite: junior or senior standing in Biomedical Engineering or consent of the instructor.
Pre-requisite:
Senior standing or instructor permission. [Top]

42-671 Precision Medicine for Biomedical Engineers | 9 units | Fall
This course explores the opportunities for engineers in precision medicine of complex medical disorders. Students will interact with clinical practitioners and investigate the technological challenges that face these practitioners. The course will focus on common complex conditions and diseases such as inflammatory bowel disease (IBD), pancreatitis, diabetes mellitus and obesity, rheumatoid arthritis, multiple sclerosis, pain syndrome and pharmacogenetics. Improvement in care of these conditions requires a reverse engineering approach, and new tools because of the complexity and unpredictability of clinical course and best treatments on a case-by-case basis. Currently, the cost of medications for these conditions in Pittsburgh alone is >1 billion, with a large percent of patients being miss-treated because of lack of precision medicine tools. The course includes introduction to medical genetics, biomarkers of disease, health records, disease modeling, outcome predictions, therapies, remote monitoring and smart applications. Special lectures on health economics and career opportunities are also planned. Each session will include an hour of didactic lectures, followed by an hour-long workshop of applications. Specific engineering topics which may be relevant to each of these specialties as well as topics which span many specialties (for example biodetectors, computational biology, bioinformatics, integrated applications) will be presented by various faculty members of the CMU biomedical engineering and other dept. Students will gain experience exploring genetic variants associated with common diseases, including the opportunity to explore their own DNA. Instructors David C. Whitcomb, MD, PhD (UPMC) Philip Empey, PharmD, PhD (UPMC)
Pre-requisite:
42-202 Physiology. [Top]

42-698B Stem Cell Engineering | 9 units | Fall, every other year
(BMTE or CMBT Track Elective)
Syllabus: 42-698B
This course will give an overview over milestones of stem cell research and will expose students to current topics at the frontier of this field. It will introduce students to the different types of stem cells as well as environmental factors and signals that are implicated in regulating stem cell fate. The course will highlight techniques for engineering of stem cells and their micro-environment. It will evaluate the use of stem cells for tissue engineering and therapies. Emphasis will be placed on discussions of current research areas and papers in this rapidly evolving field. Students will pick a class-related topic of interest, perform a thorough literature search, and present their findings as a written report as well as a paper review and a lecture. Lectures and discussions will be complemented by practical lab sessions, including: stem cell harvesting and culture, neural stem cell transfection, differentiation assays, and immunostaining, polymeric microcapsules as advanced culture systems, and stem cell integration in mouse brain tissue. The class is designed for graduate students and upper undergraduates with a strong interest in stem cell biology, and the desire to actively contribute to discussions in the class.
Pre-requisite: Instructor Permission. [Top]

42-735/16-725 Medical Image Analysis | 12 units | Spring
(BSIP Track Elective)
Course Website with Syllabus: 42-735
The fundamentals of computational medical image analysis will be explored, leading to current research in applying geometry and statistics to segmentation, registration, visualization, and image understanding. Student will develop practical experience through projects using the National Library of Medicine Insight Toolkit (ITK), a new software library developed by a consortium of institutions including CMU. In addition to image analysis, the course will describe the major medical imaging modalities and include interactions with practicing radiologists at UPMC.
Pre-requisites: Knowledge of C++, vector calculus and basic probability. [Top]

42-772 Applied Nanoscience and Nanotechnology | 12 units | Fall
(BMTE or CMBT Track Elective)
Have you ever wondered what is nanoscience and nanotechnology and their impact on our lives? In this class we will go through the key concepts related to synthesis (including growth methodologies and characterizations techniques) and chemical/physical properties of nanomaterials from zero-dimensional (0D) materials such as nanoparticles or quantum dots (QDs), one-dimensional materials such as nanowires and nanotubes to two-dimensional materials such as graphene. The students will then survey a range of applications of nanomaterials through problem-oriented discussions, with the goal of developing design strategies based on basic understanding of nanoscience. Examples include, but are not limited to, biomedical applications such as nanosensors for DNA and protein detection, nanodevices for bioelectrical interfaces, nanomaterials as building blocks in tissue engineering and drug delivery, and nano materials in cancer therapy.
Pre-requisite: Modern Chemistry (09-106) or physical chemistry, and thermodynamics (06-221, 24-221, 27-215 or equivalent). [Top]

Track Elective Courses Offered by Other Departments

Students should verify the information listed below with the departments offering the courses.

03-320 Cell Biology | 9 units | Spring
(CMBT or BMTE Track Elective)
This course provides descriptive information and mechanistic detail concerning key cellular processes in six areas: membrane function, protein targeting, signaling, cytoskeleton, cell division, and cell interaction. An attempt is made to introduce the methodology that was used to obtain this information and to discuss how our understanding of these processes relates to the treatment of human disease.
Pre-requisites: 03-121 and (03-231 or 03-232). [Top]

03-534 Biological Imaging and Fluorescence Spectroscopy | 9 units | Spring
(BSIP Track Elective)
This course covers principles and applications of optical methods in the study of structure and function in biological systems. Topics to be covered include: absorption and fluorescence spectroscopy; interaction of light with biological molecules, cells, and systems; design of fluorescent probes and optical biosensor molecules; genetically expressible optical probes; photochemistry; optics and image formation; transmitted-light and fluorescence microscope systems; laser-based systems; scanning microscopes; electronic detectors and cameras: image processing; multi-mode imaging systems; microscopy of living cells; and the optical detection of membrane potential, molecular assembly, transcription, enzyme activity, and the action of molecular motors. This course is particularly aimed at students in science and engineering interested in gaining in-depth knowledge of modern light microscopy.
Pre-requisites: (03-231 or 03-232) and 03-240 and 21-259 and (09-214 or 09-344). [Top]

18-491 Fundamentals of Signal Processing | 12 units | Fall or Spring
(BSIP Track Elective)
This course addresses the mathematics, implementation, design and application of the digital signal processing algorithms widely used in areas such as multimedia telecommunications and speech and image processing. Topics include discrete-time signals and systems, discrete-time Fourier transforms and Z-transforms, discrete Fourier transforms and fast Fourier transforms, digital filter design and implementation, and multi-rate signal processing. The course will include introductory discussions of 2-dimensional signal processing, linear prediction, adaptive filtering, and selected application areas. Classroom lectures are supplemented with implementation exercises using MATLAB. Either 18-390 or 18-792, but not both, may be count as BSIP track elective.
Pre-requisite: 18-290. [Top]

18-792 Advanced Digital Signal Processing | 12 units | Fall
(BSIP Track Elective)
This course will examine a number of advanced topics and applications in one-dimensional digital signal processing, with emphasis on optimal signal processing techniques. Topics will include modern spectral estimation, linear prediction, short-time Fourier analysis, adaptive filtering, plus selected topics in array processing and homomorphic signal processing, with applications in speech and music processing.
Pre-requisites: 18-491 or 18-791 and 36-217, and senior or graduate standing. [Top]

33-441/03-439 Introduction to BioPhysics | 10 units | Fall
(BMEC Track Elective)
This intermediate level course is primarily offered to Physics and Biology undergrads (junior/senior) and provides a modern view of molecular and cellular biology as seen from the perspective of physics, and quantified through the analytical tools of physics. This course will not review experimental biophysical techniques (which are covered, e.g., in 03-871). Rather, physicists will learn what sets “bio” apart from the remainder of the Physics world and how the apparent dilemma that the existence of life represents to classical thermodynamics is reconciled. They also will learn the nomenclature used in molecular biology. In turn, biologists will obtain (a glimpse of) what quantitative tools can achieve beyond the mere collecting and archiving of facts in a universe of observations: By devising models, non-obvious quantitative predictions are derived which can be experimentally tested and may lead to threads that connect vastly different, apparently unrelated phenomena. One major goal is then to merge the two areas, physics and biology, in a unified perspective.
Pre-requisite: No formal requirements. However, a good working knowledge of undergrad-level calculus, as well as basic (Physics I level) thermodynamics will definitely help. [Top]

39-500 Honors Research Project | 1-36 units | Fall and Spring
(All Tracks; must take 9 or more units to count as a track elective course)
Juniors who have an accumulated QPA of at least 3.5 receive an invitation to participate in the program. This course, open by invitation only, will provide the opportunity for close interaction with a faculty member through independent honors research in a number of disciplinary and interdisciplinary areas, as part of the CIT Honors Research Program. Students will work on their projects during their senior year, earning the equivalent of 18-24 units. Students are required to register for CIT Honor Research Project 39-500. To receive CIT College Honors, a student must complete at least 18 units in 39-500 on the same research topic. Students are also required to participate in the CIT poster competition at the Undergraduate Research Symposium, Meeting of the Minds, a university-wide celebration of undergraduate research.
Pre-requisite: None. [Top]

Undergraduate Course Catalog (Classes of 2017 to 2019)

Biomedical Engineering Core Courses

42-101 Introduction to Biomedical Engineering | 12 units | Fall and Spring
Syllabus: 42-101
This course will provide exposure to basic biology and engineering problems associated with living systems and health care delivery. Examples will be used to illustrate how basic concepts and tools of science & engineering can be brought to bear in understanding, mimicking and utilizing biological processes. The course will focus on four areas: biotechnology, biomechanics, biomaterials and tissue engineering and bioimaging and will introduce the basic life sciences and engineering concepts associated with these topics.
Pre-requisite or co-requisite: 03-121.

42-201 Professional Issues in Biomedical Engineering | 3 units | Fall and Spring
Syllabus: 42-201
This course helps students learn to understand technical and professional challenges biomedical engineers face. First, it introduces students to applications of technology in medicine and biology. Second, it provides an overview of professional topics involving bioethics, regulatory issues, communication skills, team work, and contemporary issues. Outside speakers describe real world problems and professional issues in biotechnology and bioengineering, and progress toward their solution. Students have the opportunity to visit state-of-the-art laboratories in such areas as bioimaging, musculoskeletal biomechanics, rapid prototyping and manufacturing, and cardiac assist devices.
Pre-requisite: 42-101 or permission of instructor.

42-202 Physiology | 9 units | Fall and Spring
Syllabus: 42-202
This course is an introduction to human physiology and includes units on all major organ systems. Particular emphasis is given to the musculoskeletal, cardiovascular, respiratory, digestive, excretory, and endocrine systems. Modules on molecular physiology, tissue engineering and physiological modeling are also included. Due to the close interrelationship between structure and function in biological systems, each functional topic will be introduced through a brief exploration of anatomical structure. Basic physical laws and principles will be explored as they relate to physiologic function.
Pre-requisite: 03-121 or permission of instructor.

42-203/03-206 Biomedical Engineering Laboratory | 9 units | Fall and Spring
Syllabus: 42-203
This laboratory course is designed to provide students with the ability to make measurements on and interpret data from living systems. The experimental modules reinforce concepts from 42-101 Introduction to Biomedical Engineering and expose students to four areas of biomedical engineering: bioimaging, biomaterials, biomechanics, and cellular and molecular biotechnology. Several cross-cutting modules are included as well. The course includes weekly lectures to complement the experimental component.
Students who have declared the Additional Major in Biomedical Engineering and who have registered with the Carnegie Mellon Health Professions Program should register for 03-206 instead of 42-203, which would count as fulfilling the requirement of both Biomedical Engineering additional major and medical school admission standard.
Pre-requisites: 42-101 and 03-121. HPP students should register for the cross-listed course 03-206. [Top]

42-401 Foundations of Biomedical Engineering Design | 6 units | Fall
Syllabus: 42-401
This course introduces Biomedical Engineering students to the design of useful biomedical products. Students will learn to identify product needs, how to specify problem definitions and to use project management tools. Methods to develop creativity in design will be introduced. Students will form project teams and select a project to be completed during the following semester in 42-402. This course culminates in the completion of a design brief.
Pre-requisite: Senior standing in Biomedical Engineering.
Co-requisite: 42-101. [Top]

42-402 Biomedical Engineering Design Project | 9 units | Spring
Syllabus: 42-402
This course focuses on integrated product development for biomedical products. Teams will consist of a variety of Biomedical Engineering students. The course consists of modules including the development of a project plan, background research, hazard analysis, setting product specifications based on user requirements, detailed design and analysis, prototype development and final documentation and presentation. Additional relevant professional development topics are also covered, including technical public speaking, proposal preparation, personal time management, and other topics. All products eveloped will respond to the needs of appropriate market segments; resulting products will be deemed safe, effective, useful, usable and desirable by those segments. Students will produce a form model, functional prototype, marketing plan, and manufacturing plan of their product.
Pre-requisite: 42-401. [Top]

03-121 Modern Biology | 9 units | Fall and Spring
This is an introductory course that provides the basis for further studies in biochemistry, cell biology, genetics and molecular biology. This course emphasizes the chemical principles underlying biological processes and cell structures as well as the analysis of genetics and heredity from a molecular perspective. This is the introductory biology course for all science and non-science majors. Students wishing to use AP credit must have a 5 on the AP exam and pass a mastery exam given by the Department of Biological Sciences. 3 hrs. lecture.
Pre-requisite: Fundamental knowledge of high school chemistry and biology.
Spring Pre-requisite: None. [Top]

Restricted Elective Courses (Classes of 2017-2019)

At most one of these courses may be taken to replace a track elective course for BMEC, BMTE, BSIP, or CMBT tracks).

42-200 Sophomore Biomedical Engineering Research Project | 3-12 units | Fall and Spring
(Must take at least 9 units to count as a track elective course)
(Track Elective Course)
Research projects under the direction of a regular or courtesy Biomedical Engineering faculty member. Arrangements may also be made via the Associate Head of Biomedical Engineering for off-campus projects at local hospitals provided that a regular or courtesy Biomedical Engineering faculty member agrees to serve as a co-advisor. The nature of the project, the number of units and the criteria for grading are to be determined between the student and the research advisor. The agreement should be summarized in a one-page project description with sign-off by the research advisor and a copy submitted for review and filing to the student’s academic advisor. A final written report or oral presentation of the results is required. Units may vary from 3 to 12 according to the expected time commitment. [Top]

42-300 Junior Biomedical Engineering Research Project | 3-12 units | Fall and Spring
(Must take 9 units to count as a track elective course)
(Elective Course)
Research projects under the direction of a regular or courtesy Biomedical Engineering faculty member. Arrangements may also be made via the Associate Head of Biomedical Engineering for off-campus projects at local hospitals provided that a regular or courtesy Biomedical Engineering faculty member agrees to serve as a co-advisor. The nature of the project, the number of units and the criteria for grading are to be determined between the student and the research advisor. The agreement should be summarized in a one-page project description with sign-off by the research advisor and a copy submitted for review and filing to the student’s academic advisor. A final written report or oral presentation of the results is required. Units may vary from 3 to 12 according to the expected time commitment. [Top]

42-302 Systems Modeling and Analysis for Biomedical Engineering | 9 units | Fall
This course is designed to enable students to develop mathematical models for biological systems and for biomedical engineering systems, devices, components, and processes and to use models for data reduction and for system performance analysis, prediction and optimization. Models considered will be drawn from a broad range of applications and will be based on algebraic equations, ordinary differential equations and partial differential equations. The tools of advanced engineering mathematics comprising analytical, computational and statistical approaches will be introduced and used for model manipulation.
Pre-requisite: Junior of senior. [Top]

42-400 Senior Biomedical Engineering Research Project | 3-12 units | Fall and Spring
(Must take 9 units to count as a track elective course)
(Elective Course)
Research projects under the direction of a regular or courtesy Biomedical Engineering faculty member. Arrangements may also be made via the Associate Head of Biomedical Engineering for off-campus projects at local hospitals provided that a regular or courtesy Biomedical Engineering faculty member agrees to serve as a co-advisor. The nature of the project, the number of units and the criteria for grading are to be determined between the student and the research advisor. The agreement should be summarized in a one-page project description with sign-off by the research advisor and a copy submitted for review and filing to the student’s academic advisor. A final written report or oral presentation of the results is required. Units may vary from 3 to 12 according to the expected time commitment. [Top]

42-661 Surgery for Engineers | 9 units | Spring
This course explores the impact of engineering on surgery. Students will interact with clinical practitioners and investigate the technological challenges that face these practitioners. A number of visits to the medical center are anticipated for hands on experience with a number of technologies utilized by surgeons to demonstrate the result of advances in biomedical engineering. These experiences are expected to include microvascular surgery, robotic surgery, laparoscopic, and endoscopic techniques. Tours of the operating room and shock trauma unit will be arranged. If possible observation of an operative procedure will be arranged (if scheduling permits). Invited surgeons will represent disciplines including cardiovascular surgery, plastic and reconstructive surgery, surgical oncology, trauma surgery, minimally invasive surgery, oral and maxillofacial surgery, bariatric surgery, thoracic surgery, orthopedic surgery, and others. Specific engineering topics which may be relevant to each of these specialties as well as topics which span many specialties (for example imaging, biomaterials, biomechanics, etc) will be presented by various faculty members of the CMU Biomedical Engineering dept. Students will self-select into teams and present a broad topic overview that will augment the clinical speaker’s presentation. The topics and teams will be finalized on the first day of class and can be tailored to reflect the specific interests of the class but might include topics such as: pump functions of the heart, compliance of the vascular system, electrical map and function of the heart, surgical approaches to cancer, etc. A final paper/presentation will identify an unsolved surgical problem and a potential bioengineered solution for the problem. The possibility to extend this effort into an independent research endeavor will be discussed.
The Primary Instructor is Howard Edington, M.D., MBA System Chairman of Surgery, Allegheny Health Network. This course meets once a week for 3 hours. Several sessions will be held at the Medical Center, transport provided.
Pre-requisite: Physiology 42-202 and one of the introductory engineering courses, 42-101, 06-100, 12-100. 18-100, 19-101, 24-101, or 27-100 [Top]

42-664 Bioinstrumentation | 9 units | Spring
(Not for Students in BSIP Track, Who May Take This Course as a Track Elective)
This course aims to build the foundation of basic principles, applications and design of bioinstrumentation. Topics covered include biosignals recording, transducers for biomedical application, action potentials EMG, EEG, ECG, amplifiers and signal processing, blood flow and pressure measurements, data acquisition and signal conditioning, spectral analysis of data, filtering, and safety aspects of electrical measurements. Ultimately, students will learn (1) how to apply basic circuit theory to perform measurement of biosignals, (2) be familiar and use common measurement devices, such as multimeter and oscilloscope, (3) be familiar with Op-amps circuits, (4) how to acquire and analyze a signal using time and frequency techniques, and (5) how to filter a signal to remove noise.
Pre-requisite: 33-107. [Top]

42-671 Precision Medicine for Biomedical Engineers | 9 units | Fall
This course explores the opportunities for engineers in precision medicine of complex medical disorders. Students will interact with clinical practitioners and investigate the technological challenges that face these practitioners. The course will focus on common complex conditions and diseases such as inflammatory bowel disease (IBD), pancreatitis, diabetes mellitus and obesity, rheumatoid arthritis, multiple sclerosis, pain syndrome and pharmacogenetics. Improvement in care of these conditions requires a reverse engineering approach, and new tools because of the complexity and unpredictability of clinical course and best treatments on a case-by-case basis. Currently, the cost of medications for these conditions in Pittsburgh alone is >1 billion, with a large percent of patients being miss-treated because of lack of precision medicine tools. The course includes introduction to medical genetics, biomarkers of disease, health records, disease modeling, outcome predictions, therapies, remote monitoring and smart applications. Special lectures on health economics and career opportunities are also planned. Each session will include an hour of didactic lectures, followed by an hour-long workshop of applications. Specific engineering topics which may be relevant to each of these specialties as well as topics which span many specialties (for example biodetectors, computational biology, bioinformatics, integrated applications) will be presented by various faculty members of the CMU biomedical engineering and other dept. Students will gain experience exploring genetic variants associated with common diseases, including the opportunity to explore their own DNA. Instructors David C. Whitcomb, MD, PhD (UPMC) Philip Empey, PharmD, PhD (UPMC)
Pre-requisite:
42-202 Physiology. [Top]

39-500 Honors Research Project | 1-36 units | Fall and Spring
(All Tracks; must take 9 or more units to count as a track elective course)
Juniors who have an accumulated QPA of at least 3.5 receive an invitation to participate in the program. This course, open by invitation only, will provide the opportunity for close interaction with a faculty member through independent honors research in a number of disciplinary and interdisciplinary areas, as part of the CIT Honors Research Program. Students will work on their projects during their senior year, earning the equivalent of 18-24 units. Students are required to register for CIT Honor Research Project 39-500. To receive CIT College Honors, a student must complete at least 18 units in 39-500 on the same research topic. Students are also required to participate in the CIT poster competition at the Undergraduate Research Symposium, Meeting of the Minds, a university-wide celebration of undergraduate research. [Top]

Track Gateway Courses (Classes of 2017-2019)

03-231 Biochemistry I (not for students majoring in Chemical Engineering) | 9 units | Fall
(BMTE and CMBT Gateway course, cannot count toward Chemical Engineering major requirements)
This course provides an introduction to molecules and processes found in living systems. Amino acids, sugars, lipids and nucleotides and their corresponding higher structures, the proteins, polysaccharides, membranes and nucleic acids are studied. Kinetics and mechanisms of enzymes as well as elementary metabolic cycles and the energetics of biological systems are discussed.
Pre-requisite: 03-121. Co-requisite: 09-217. [Top]

03-232 Biochemistry I | 9 units | Spring
(BMTE and CMBT Gateway course, also serves as a requirement for Chemical Engineering major)
This course provides an introduction to the application of biochemistry to biotechnology. The functional properties of amino acids, nucleotides, lipids, and sugars are presented. This is followed by a discussion of the structural and thermodynamic aspects of the organization of these molecules into higher-order structures, such as proteins, nucleic acids, and membranes. The kinetics and thermodynamics of protein-ligand interactions are discussed for non-cooperative, cooperative, and allosteric binding events. The use of mechanistic and kinetic information in enzyme characterization and drug discovery are discussed. Topics pertinent to biotechnology include: antibody production and use, energy production in biochemical systems, expression of recombinant proteins, and methods of protein purification and characterization.
Pre-requisite: 09-217. Co-requisites: 09-106, 06-221. [Top]

06-261 Fluid Mechanics | 9 units | Spring
(BMEC Gateway course, for students of Chemical Engineering)
The principles of fluid mechanics as applied to engineering, including unit operations, are discussed; examples include flow in conduits, process equipment, and commercial pipes, flow around submerged objects, and flow measurement. Microscopic mass and momentum balances are described, including the continuity and Navier-Stokes equations, and modern solution techniques will be explored. Microscopic flow structures will be determined for flow visualization. Boundary layer theory, turbulence, and non-Newtonian fluids are also discussed. A case-study project based on new technological advancements is also required.
Pre-requisite: 06-100, 21-259. Co-requisites: 06-262. [Top]

12-355 Fluid Mechanics | 9 units | Fall
(BMEC Gateway course, for students of Civil & Environmental Engineering)
Fluid characteristics; continuity, momentum and energy equations; dynamic similitude; laminar and turbulent boundary layers; flow in pipes; lift and drag on immersed bodies; open channel flow.
Pre-requisite: 21-260, 21-259. [Top]

24-231 Fluid Mechanics | 10 units | Spring
(BMEC Gateway course, for students of Mechanical Engineering)
Hydrostatics. Control volume concepts of mass, momentum, and energy conservation. Euler's and Bernoulli's equations. Viscous flow equations. Head loss in ducts and piping systems. Dimensional analysis and similitude as an engineering tool. Measurement techniques.
Pre-requisite: 33-106, and (21-123 or 21-122). [Top]

18-290 Signals and Systems | 12 units | Fall and Spring
(BSIP Gateway course)
This course develops the mathematical foundation and computational tools for processing continuous-time and discrete-time signals in both time and frequency domain. Key concepts and tools introduced and discussed in this class include linear time-invariant systems, impulse response, frequency response, convolution, filtering, sampling, and Fourier transform. Efficient algorithms like the fast Fourier transform (FFT) will be covered. The course provides background to a wide range of applications including speech, image, and multimedia processing, bio and medical imaging, sensor networks, communication systems, and control systems. This course serves as entry and prerequisite for any higher level course in the fields of signal processing, communications, and control.
Pre-requisites: 18-100. Co-requisite: 18-202. [Top]

Track Elective Courses (Classes of 2017-2019)

42-341/24-334 Introduction to Biomechanics | 9 units | Fall
(BMEC Track Elective)
This course covers the application of solid and fluid mechanics to living tissues. This includes the mechanical properties and behavior of individual cells, the heart, blood vessels, the lungs, bone, muscle and connective tissues as well as methods for the analysis of human motion.
Pre-requisites: Fluid mechanics via either 24-231, 06-261, or 12-355. [Top]

42-411/27-411 Engineering Biomaterials | 9 units | Fall
(BMTE Track Elective)
Syllabus: 42-411
This course will cover structure-processing-property relationships in biomaterials for use in medicine. This course will focus on quantitative aspects of biomaterials design. Topics of study include surfaces, thermodynamics, receptor-binding kinetics, quantitative analysis of cell behavior, and transport phenomena. This course will discuss practical applications of these materials in medical devices, drug delivery, tissue engineering, biosensors, etc.
Pre-requisite: 06-221, 24-221, 27-215 or equivalent; senior in CIT or permission of instructor. [Top]

42-426 Biosensors and BioMEMS | 9 units | Intermittent
(CMBT Track Elective)
This course emphasizes the principles of biomolecule-based sensing, including molecular recognition, biomolecular binding kinetics and equilibrium; methods of detection and signal transduction, including optical, colorimetric, fluorescence, potentiometric, and gravimetric techniques; statistical principles of high throughput screening; microfluidic and microarray device design principles and fabrication technologies; molecular motors.
Pre-requisite: 03-231 Biochemistry or 03-232 Biochemistry. [Top]

42-444 Medical Devices | 9 units | Fall and Spring
(BMEC Track Elective)
Syllabus: 42-444
This course is an introduction to the engineering, clinical, legal and regulatory aspects of medical device performance and failure. Topics covered include a broad survey of the thousands of successful medical devices in clinical use, as well as historical case studies of devices that were withdrawn from the market. In-depth study of specific medical devices will include: cardiovascular medicine (pacemakers, heart valves, vascular grafts, heart-assist pumps..), orthopedics (fixation devices, prostheses…), and general medicine (defibrillators, blood pressure cuffs, stethoscopes…) We will study the principles of operation (with hands-on examples), design evolution, and modes of failure. Additional lectures will provide basic information concerning biomaterials used for implantable medical devices (metals, polymers, ceramics) and their biocompatibility, mechanisms of failure (wear, corrosion, fatigue, fretting, etc.). Guest lectures will be provided by practicing engineers from regional medical device companies to provide real-world perspective of the development process.
In addition to a mid-term and final exam covering topics presented in class, students will prepare a written report that critically investigates a particular medical device that has been recalled by the FDA, of the student’s choosing. The report will include the design history, engineering analysis, and recommendations for future improvements (re-design). [Students enrolled in 42-744 will also be required to produce a lo-fi prototype, which they will present in class at the end of the semester.]
The ultimate objectives of this course are to (1) provide students with a broad understanding of the medical device industry, (2) stimulate critical analysis of medical device design, and (3) convey practical knowledge and skills that are valuable for a future career in the medical device industry.
Pre-requisite: Junior standing or higher for MCS and CIT students. For non- MCS or CIT graduate students, a degree in a science or engineering. For all other students, permission of the instructor. [Top]

42-612/27-520 Tissue Engineering | 12 units | Spring
(BMTE Track Elective)
Syllabus: 42-612
This course will train students in advanced cellular and tissue engineering methods that apply physical, mechanical and chemical manipulation of materials in order to direct cell and tissue function. Students will learn the techniques and equipment of bench research including cell culture, immunofluorescent imaging, soft lithography, variable stiffness substrates, application/measurement of forces and other methods. Students will integrate classroom lectures and lab skills by applying the scientific method to develop a unique project while working in a team environment, keeping a detailed lab notebook and meeting mandated milestones. Emphasis will be placed on developing the written and oral communication skills required of the professional scientist. The class will culminate with a poster presentation session based on class projects.
Pre-requisite: Knowledge in cell biology and biomaterials, or permission of instructor. [Top]

42-613/27-570 Molecular and Micro-Scale Polymeric Biomaterials in Medicine | 9 units | Spring, every other year
(BMTE Track Elective)
This course will cover aspects of polymeric biomaterials in medicine from molecular principles to device scale design and fabrication. Topics include the chemistry, characterization, and processing of synthetic polymeric materials; cell-biomaterials interactions including interfacial phenomena, tissue responses, and biodegradation mechanisms; aspects of polymeric micro-systems design and fabrication for applications in medical devices. Recent advances in these topics will also be discussed.
Pre-requisite: 09-217 Organic Chemistry I or 09-219 Modern Organic Chemistry. [Top]

42-620 Engineerng Molecular Cell Biology | 12 units | Fall
(BMTE or CMBT Track Elective)
Cells are not only basic units of living organisms but also fascinating engineering systems that exhibit amazing functionality, adaptability, and complexity. Applying engineering perspectives and approaches to study molecular mechanisms of cellular processes plays a critical role in the development of contemporary biology. At the same time, understanding the principles that govern biological systems provides critical insights into the development of engineering systems, especially in the micro- and nano-technology. The goal of this course is to provide basic molecular cell biology for engineering students with little or no background in cell biology, with particular emphasis on the application of quantitative and system perspectives to basic cellular processes. Course topics include the fundamentals of molecular biology, the structural and functional organization of the cell, the cytoskeleton and cell motility, the mechanics of cell division, and cell-cell interactions.
Pre-requisites: 21-260 or 06-262 or 18-202. Advanced undergraduate or graduate student standing is required. Prior completion of 03-121 is suggested but not required. Proficiency in basic computation such as MATLAB programming is expected. [Top]

42-622/06-622 Bioprocess Design | 9 units | Spring, intermittent
(CMBT Track Elective)
This course is designed to link concepts of cell culture, bioseparations, formulation and delivery together for the commercial production and use of biologically-based pharmaceuticals; products considered include proteins, nucleic acids, and fermentation-derived fine chemicals. Associated regulatory issues and biotech industry case studies are also included. The format of the course is a mixture of equal parts lecture, open discussion and participant presentation. Course work consists of team-oriented problem sets of an open ended nature and individual-oriented industry case studies. The goals of the course are to build an integrated, technical knowledge base of the manufacture of biologically based pharmaceuticals and the US biotechnology industry. Working knowledge of basic cell and modern biology, biochemistry, and differential equations/partial differential equations is assumed.
Pre-requisite: 42-321 or both 03-232 and 06-422, or instructor permission. [Top]

42-623 Cellular and Molecular Biotechnology | 9 units | Fall, intermittent
(CMBT Track Elective)
Syllabus: 42-623
This course provides the student with an introduction to biotechnology in an engineering context. The focus will be on using microorganisms to prepare therapeutically and technologically relevant biochemicals. Topics to be covered include cellular and microbial metabolism, recombinant DNA methodologies, bioreactor design, protein separation and purification, and systems approaches to biotechnology.
Pre-requisites: (42-202 or 03-121 or 03-232) and (06-262 or 21-260) or permission of instructor. [Top]

42-624 Biological Transport and Drug Delivery | 9 units | Spring
(CMBT or BMTE Track Elective)
Analysis of transport phenomena in life processes on the molecular, cellular, organ and organism levels and their application to the modeling and design of targeted or sustained release drug delivery technologies. Coupling of mass transfer and reaction processes will be a consistent theme as they are applied to rates of receptor-mediated solute uptake in cells, drug transport and biodistribution, and drug release from delivery vehicles. Design concepts underlying new advances in nanomedicine will be described.
Pre-requisite: 06-262 or 21-260 [Top]

42-630/18-690 Introduction to Neuroscience for Engineers | 12 units | Spring
(BSIP Track Elective)
The first half of the course will introduce engineers to the neurosciences from the cellular level to the structure and function of the central nervous system (CNS) vis-a-vis the peripheral nervous system (PNS) and include a study of basic neurophysiology; the second half of the course will review neuroengineering methods and technologies that enable study of and therapeutic solutions for diseases or damage to the CNS. A goal of this course is to provide a taxonomy of neuroengineering technologies for research or clinical application in the neurosciences.
Pre-requisites: 42-101 or 18-100. [Top]

42-631 Neural Data Analysis | 12 units | Fall
(BSIP Track Elective)
The vast majority of behaviorally relevant information is transmitted through the brain by neurons as trains of actions potentials. How can we understand the information being transmitted? This class will cover the basic engineering and statistical tools in common use for analyzing neural spike train data, with an emphasis on hands-on application. Topics will include neural spike train statistics, estimation theory (MLE, MAP), signal detection theory (d-prime, ROC analysis), information theory (entropy, mutual information, neural coding theories, spike-distance metrics), discrete classification (naïve Bayes), continuous decoding (PVA, OLE, Kalman), and white-noise analysis. Each topic covered will be linked back to the central ideas from undergraduate probability, and each assignment will involve actual analysis of neural data, either real or simulated, using Matlab. This class is meant for upper-level undergraduates or beginning graduate students, and is geared to the engineer who wants to learn the neurophysiologist's toolbox and the neurophysiologist who wants to learn new tools.
Pre-requisites: undergraduate probability (36-217 or 36-225, or equivalent). [Top]

42-632/18-698 Neural Signal Processing | 12 units | Spring
(BSIP Track Elective)
Syllabus: 42-632
The brain is among the most complex systems ever studied. Underlying the brain's ability to process sensory information and drive motor actions is a network of 10^11 neurons, each making 10^3 connections with other neurons. Modern statistical and machine learning tools are needed to interpret the plethora of neural data being collected, both for (1) furthering our understanding of how the brain works, and (2) designing biomedical devices that interface with the brain. This course will cover a range of statistical methods and their application to neural data analysis. The statistical topics include latent variable models, dynamical systems, point processes, dimensionality reduction, Bayesian inference, and spectral analysis. The neuroscience applications include neural decoding, firing rate estimation, neural system characterization, sensorimotor control, spike sorting, and field potential analysis.
Pre-requisites: 18-290 for ECE students; 36-217, or equivalent introductory probability theory and random variables course; an introductory linear algebra course; senior or graduate standing. No prior knowledge of neuroscience is needed. [Top]

42-640/24-658 Computational Bio-Modeling and Visualization | 12 units | Spring
(BSIP or BMEC Track Elective)
Syllabus: 42-640
Biomedical modeling and visualization play an important role in mathematical modeling and computer simulation of real/artificial life for improved medical diagnosis and treatment. This course integrates mechanical engineering, biomedical engineering, computer science, and mathematics together. Topics to be studied include medical imaging, image processing, geometric modeling, visualization, computational mechanics, and biomedical applications. The techniques introduced are applied to examples of multi-scale biomodeling and simulations at the molecular, cellular, tissue, and organ level scales.
Pre-requisite: none. [Top]

42-643/24-615/06-623 Microfluidics | 12 units | Intermittent
(CMBT, BMTE, or BMEC Track Elective)
This course offers an introduction to the emerging field of microfluidics with an emphasis on chemical and life sciences applications. During this course students will examine the fluid dynamical phenomena underlying key components of “lab on a chip” devices. Students will have the opportunity to learn practical aspects of microfluidic device operation through hands-on laboratory experience, computer simulations of microscale flows, and reviews of recent literature in the field. Throughout the course, students will consider ways of optimizing device performance based on knowledge of the fundamental fluid mechanics. Students will explore selected topics in more detail through a semester project. Major course topics include pressure-driven and electrokinetically-driven flows in microchannels, surface effects, micro-fabrication methods, micro/nanoparticles for biotechnology, biochemical reactions and assays, mixing and separation, two-phase flows, and integration and design of microfluidic chips.
Pre-requisites: 24-231 or 06-261 or 12-355 or instructor permission. [Top]

42-645/24-655 Cellular Biomechanics | 9 units | Fall, every other year
(CMBT or BMEC Track Elective)
Syllabus: 42-645
This course discusses how mechanical quantities and processes such as force, motion, and deformation influence cell behavior and function, with a focus on the connection between mechanics and biochemistry. Specific topics include: (1) the role of stresses in the cytoskeleton dynamics as related to cell growth, spreading, motility, and adhesion; (2) the generation of force and motion by moot molecules; (3) stretch-activated ion channels; (4) protein and DNA deformation; (5) mechanochemical coupling in signal transduction. If time permits, we will also cover protein trafficking and secretion and the effects of mechanical forces on gene expression. Emphasis is placed on the biomechanics issues at the cellular and molecular levels; their clinical and engineering implications are elucidated. 3 hours lecture.
Pre-requisite: Instructor permission. [Top]

42-646/06-646/24-657 Molecular Biomechanics | 9 units | Spring, every other year
(CMBT or BMEC Track Elective)
Syllabus: 42-646
This class is designed to present concepts of molecular biology, cellular biology and biophysics at the molecular level together with applications. Emphasis will be placed both on the biology of the system and on the fundamental physics, chemistry and mechanics which describe the molecular level phenomena within context. In addition to studying the structure, mechanics and energetics of biological systems at the nano-scale, we will also study and conceptually design biomimetic molecules and structures. Fundamentals of DNA, globular and structured proteins, lipids and assemblies thereof will be covered.
Pre-requisite: Thermodynamics (06-221 or 24-221) or instructor permission. [Top]

42-647/24-659 Continuum Biomechanics: Solid and Fluid Mechanics of Physiological Systems| 12 units | Spring
(BMEC Track Elective)
This course provides a general survey of the application of continuum mechanics to biomechanics. The objective of this course is to provide the basic ideas of continuum mechanics for engineering and science students with little or no background in biomechanics, with particular emphasis on the application of quantitative and system perspectives to fluid and solid mechanics problems. The course begins with a historical review of the subject followed by a review of vector and tensor analysis, before discussing various measures of deformation and stress formulations. The development and understanding of appropriate constitutive models for particular problems are emphasized. Both analytical and experimental results are presented through readings from recent literature and the relevance of these results to the solution of unsolved problems is highlighted. The course encourages class participation and discussion in a seminar fashion and includes individually-crafted research projects that will be discussed in class.
Pre-requisites: 21-260 or 06-262 or permission of instructor. Knowledge in mechanics of deformable solids (24-202) and fluid mechanics desirable but not required. [Top]

42-648 Cardiovascular Mechanics | 12 units | Spring
(BMEC Track Elective)
Syllabus: 42-648
The primary objective of the course is to teach how to model blood flow and mechanical forces in the cardiovascular system and medical devices. After a brief review of cardiovascular physiology and fluid mechanics, the course will progress from modeling blood flow and mechanical forces in a.) small-scale steady flow applications to b.) small-scale pulsatile applications to c.) large-scale or complex pulsatile flow applications. The course will also discuss how to calculate mechanical forces on cardiovascular tissue (blood vessels, the heart) and cardiovascular cells (endothelial cells, platelets, red and white blood cells), and the effects of those forces. Lastly, the course will focus on the biomechanical issues present in selected medical devices (heart valves, ventricular assist devices, artificial lungs).
Pre-requisite: 42-101 Introduction to Biomedical Engineering, 42-202 Physiology, and a fluid mechanics course as the BMEC Gateway. [Top]

42-664 Bioinstrumentation | 9 Units | Intermittent
(BSIP Track Elective; Students in Other Tracks May Take This Course as a Restrictive Elective)
This course aims to build the foundation of basic principles, applications and design of bioinstrumentation. Topics covered include biosignals recording, transducers for biomedical application, action potentials EMG, EEG, ECG, amplifiers and signal processing, blood flow and pressure measurements, data acquisition and signal conditioning, spectral analysis of data, filtering, and safety aspects of electrical measurements. Ultimately, students will learn (1) how to apply basic circuit theory to perform measurement of biosignals, (2) be familiar and use common measurement devices, such as multimeter and oscilloscope, (3) be familiar with Op-amps circuits, (4) how to acquire and analyze a signal using time and frequency techniques, and (5) how to filter a signal to remove noise.
Pre-requisite:
33-107. [Top]

42-670 Biomaterial Host Interactions in Regenerative Medicine | 12 units | Fall
(BMTE Track Elective)
This course will provide students with hands-on experience in investigating host responses to synthetic and naturally biomaterials used in regenerative medicine applications. Students will gain experience in the analysis of host responses to these biomaterials as well as strategies to control host interaction. Biomaterial biocompatibility, immune interactions, tissue healing and regeneration will be addressed. Students will integrate classroom lectures with laboratory skills evaluating host-material interactions in a laboratory setting. Laboratory characterization techniques will include cell culture techniques, microscopic, cytochemical, immunocytochemical and histological analyses. Prerequisite: junior or senior standing in Biomedical Engineering or consent of the instructor.
Pre-requisite:
Senior standing or instructor permission. [Top]

42-698B Stem Cell Engineering | 9 units | Fall, every other year
(BMTE or CMBT Track Elective)
Syllabus: 42-698B
This course will give an overview over milestones of stem cell research and will expose students to current topics at the frontier of this field. It will introduce students to the different types of stem cells as well as environmental factors and signals that are implicated in regulating stem cell fate. The course will highlight techniques for engineering of stem cells and their micro-environment. It will evaluate the use of stem cells for tissue engineering and therapies. Emphasis will be placed on discussions of current research areas and papers in this rapidly evolving field. Students will pick a class-related topic of interest, perform a thorough literature search, and present their findings as a written report as well as a paper review and a lecture. Lectures and discussions will be complemented by practical lab sessions, including: stem cell harvesting and culture, neural stem cell transfection, differentiation assays, and immunostaining, polymeric microcapsules as advanced culture systems, and stem cell integration in mouse brain tissue. The class is designed for graduate students and upper undergraduates with a strong interest in stem cell biology, and the desire to actively contribute to discussions in the class.
Pre-requisite: Instructor Permission. [Top]

42-735/16-725 Medical Image Analysis | 12 units | Spring
(BSIP Track Elective)
Course Website with Syllabus: 42-735
The fundamentals of computational medical image analysis will be explored, leading to current research in applying geometry and statistics to segmentation, registration, visualization, and image understanding. Student will develop practical experience through projects using the National Library of Medicine Insight Toolkit (ITK), a new software library developed by a consortium of institutions including CMU. In addition to image analysis, the course will describe the major medical imaging modalities and include interactions with practicing radiologists at UPMC.
Pre-requisites: Knowledge of C++, vector calculus and basic probability. [Top]

42-772 Applied Nanoscience and Nanotechnology | 12 units | Fall
(BMTE or CMBT Track Elective)
Have you ever wondered what is nanoscience and nanotechnology and their impact on our lives? In this class we will go through the key concepts related to synthesis (including growth methodologies and characterizations techniques) and chemical/physical properties of nanomaterials from zero-dimensional (0D) materials such as nanoparticles or quantum dots (QDs), one-dimensional materials such as nanowires and nanotubes to two-dimensional materials such as graphene. The students will then survey a range of applications of nanomaterials through problem-oriented discussions, with the goal of developing design strategies based on basic understanding of nanoscience. Examples include, but are not limited to, biomedical applications such as nanosensors for DNA and protein detection, nanodevices for bioelectrical interfaces, nanomaterials as building blocks in tissue engineering and drug delivery, and nano materials in cancer therapy.
Pre-requisite: Modern Chemistry (09-106) or physical chemistry, and thermodynamics (06-221, 24-221, 27-215 or equivalent). [Top]

42-774 Introduction to Biophotonics | 9 units | Fall
(BSIP Track Elective)
Biophotonics, or biomedical optics, is a field dealing with the application of optical science and imaging technology to biomedical problems, including clinical applications. The course introduces basic concepts in electromagnetism and light tissue interactions, including optical properties of tissue, absorption, fluorescence, and light scattering. Imaging methods will be described, including fluorescence imaging, Raman spectroscopy, optical coherence tomography, diffuse optical spectroscopy, and photoacoustic tomography. The basic physics and engineering of each imaging technique are emphasized. Their relevance to human disease diagnostic and clinical applications will be included, such as breast cancer imaging and monitoring, 3D retinal imaging, ways of non-invasive tumor detection, as well as functional brain imaging in infants.
Pre-requisite: 33-107 Physics II for Engineering Students or permission of the instructor. [Top]

Track Elective Courses Offered by Other Departments (Classes of 2017-2019)

Students should verify the information listed below with the departments offering the courses.

03-240/03-320 Cell Biology | 9 units | Spring
(CMBT or BMTE Track Elective)
This course provides descriptive information and mechanistic detail concerning key cellular processes in six areas: membrane function, protein targeting, signaling, cytoskeleton, cell division, and cell interaction. An attempt is made to introduce the methodology that was used to obtain this information and to discuss how our understanding of these processes relates to the treatment of human disease.
Pre-requisites: 03-121 and (03-231 or 03-232). [Top]

03-534 Biological Imaging and Fluorescence Spectroscopy | 9 units | Spring
(BSIP Track Elective)
This course covers principles and applications of optical methods in the study of structure and function in biological systems. Topics to be covered include: absorption and fluorescence spectroscopy; interaction of light with biological molecules, cells, and systems; design of fluorescent probes and optical biosensor molecules; genetically expressible optical probes; photochemistry; optics and image formation; transmitted-light and fluorescence microscope systems; laser-based systems; scanning microscopes; electronic detectors and cameras: image processing; multi-mode imaging systems; microscopy of living cells; and the optical detection of membrane potential, molecular assembly, transcription, enzyme activity, and the action of molecular motors. This course is particularly aimed at students in science and engineering interested in gaining in-depth knowledge of modern light microscopy.
Pre-requisites: (03-231 or 03-232) and 03-240 and 21-259 and (09-214 or 09-344). [Top]

09-217 Organic Chemistry I | 9 units | Fall
(BMTE Track Elective)
This course presents an overview of structure and bonding as it pertains to organic molecules. Selected topics include: introduction to functional group chemistry, stereochemistry, conformational analysis, reaction mechanisms and use of retrosynthetic analysis in the development of multistep syntheses. Methods for structure determination of organic compounds by modern spectroscopic techniques are introduced. Either 09-217 or 09-218, but not both, may count as BMTE track elective.
Pre-requisite: 09-105 or 09-107. [Top]

09-218 Organic Chemistry II | 9 units | Spring
(BMTE Track Elective)
This course further develops many of the concepts introduced in Organic Chemistry I, 09-217. Emphasis is placed on the utilization of reaction mechanisms for understanding the outcome of chemical transformations, and the employment of a wide variety of functional groups and reaction types in the synthesis of organic molecules. Also included in the course will be special topics selected from the following; polymers and advanced materials, biomolecules such as carbohydrates, proteins and nucleic acids, and drug design. Either 09-217 or 09-218, but not both, may count as BMTE track elective.
Pre-requiste: 09-217 or 09-219. [Top]

18-491 Fundamentals of Signal Processing | 12 units | Fall or Spring
(BSIP Track Elective)
This course addresses the mathematics, implementation, design and application of the digital signal processing algorithms widely used in areas such as multimedia telecommunications and speech and image processing. Topics include discrete-time signals and systems, discrete-time Fourier transforms and Z-transforms, discrete Fourier transforms and fast Fourier transforms, digital filter design and implementation, and multi-rate signal processing. The course will include introductory discussions of 2-dimensional signal processing, linear prediction, adaptive filtering, and selected application areas. Classroom lectures are supplemented with implementation exercises using MATLAB. Either 18-390 or 18-792, but not both, may be count as BSIP track elective.
Pre-requisite: 18-290. [Top]

18-792 Advanced Digital Signal Processing | 12 units | Fall
(BSIP Track Elective)
This course will examine a number of advanced topics and applications in one-dimensional digital signal processing, with emphasis on optimal signal processing techniques. Topics will include modern spectral estimation, linear prediction, short-time Fourier analysis, adaptive filtering, plus selected topics in array processing and homomorphic signal processing, with applications in speech and music processing.
Pre-requisites: 18-491 or 18-791 and 36-217, and senior or graduate standing. [Top]

33-441/03-439 Introduction to BioPhysics | 10 units | Fall
(BMEC Track Elective)
This intermediate level course is primarily offered to Physics and Biology undergrads (junior/senior) and provides a modern view of molecular and cellular biology as seen from the perspective of physics, and quantified through the analytical tools of physics. This course will not review experimental biophysical techniques (which are covered, e.g., in 03-871). Rather, physicists will learn what sets “bio” apart from the remainder of the Physics world and how the apparent dilemma that the existence of life represents to classical thermodynamics is reconciled. They also will learn the nomenclature used in molecular biology. In turn, biologists will obtain (a glimpse of) what quantitative tools can achieve beyond the mere collecting and archiving of facts in a universe of observations: By devising models, non-obvious quantitative predictions are derived which can be experimentally tested and may lead to threads that connect vastly different, apparently unrelated phenomena. One major goal is then to merge the two areas, physics and biology, in a unified perspective.
Pre-requisite: No formal requirements. However, a good working knowledge of undergrad-level calculus, as well as basic (Physics I level) thermodynamics will definitely help. [Top]

Revised 08/24/2016