NEWARK, July 26- -- The development of a virtual reality system
for rehabilitating the hand function of stroke victims, a new instrument
for detecting malignant melanomas and more inquiries number among the
newest research thrusts at the Newark College of Engineering at New
Jersey Institute of Technology (NJIT). Information about these and other
projects, follow. For additional details, interviews and/or photo opportunities,
contact the NJIT public relations department.
Heart Rate Variability The time interval between heartbeats is
not constant and this variability decreases with age and disease. Stanley
Reisman, Ph.D., professor of biomedical engineering at NJIT, is exploring
the role of heart rate variability in health and disease. In a project
with University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey and the East
Orange VA Medical Center, he is studying heart rate variability in subjects
with heart failure and syncope. A privately-funded study is looking
at heart rate variability in Parkinson's disease and in cancer. His
particular interest is the use of time-frequency analysis, which allows
the study of heart rate variability over time as conditions in the subjects
Virtual Reality in Rehabilitation In collaboration with scientists
from Rutgers University and the University of Medicine and Dentistry
of New Jersey,. Michael Recce, Ph.D., associate professor of biomedical
engineering, is developing a PC-based desktop virtual reality system
for rehabilitating hand function in stroke patients. Funded by the New
Jersey Commission for Science and Technology, the system uses two hand-input
devices, a CyberGlove and a RMI force feedback glove, to allow the user
to interact with four rehabilitation exercises. The therapy program
is semi-automated and personalized to each user through the use of performance
based target levels that adapt between sessions to induce the user to
improve. To further motivate the patient, screen displays are designed
as interactive games. Preliminary studies have found substantial recovery
of motor abilities in patients.
Multispectral Imaging for Cancer Detection Malignant melanoma
is the leading killer among dermatological diseases and the most lethal
skin cancer. Structural and morphological changes of the pigmented lesion
are important for early detection of melanoma. Atam Dhawan, Ph.D., NJIT
Professor and Chair of Electrical and Computer Engineering, has developed
a novel non-invasive optical instrument called the "Nevoscope" for in
situ imaging of skin lesions through transillumination by visible light.
Currently, a new multispectral Nevoscope imaging and image analysis
system with a signature database for characterization of skin lesions
is being developed and evaluated. Funded by NASA, Dhawan is also studying
tissue characterization from multimodality multiparameter magnetic resonance
brain images and data mining for safety diagnostic subsystem of next
generation jet propulsion systems.
Ultrasound for Soil Decontamination With an initial two-year
funding by USEPA to investigate the enhancement of soil washing process
using ultrasound, Jay Meegoda, Ph.D. NJIT Professor of Civil and Environmental
Engineering, is leading a team to develop an innovative and cost effective
way to decontaminate soils and sediments. Since the technology to recycle
the surfactant used in soil-washing process is not cost effective, Meegoda
proposed to apply vacuum to capture the contaminants removed from ultrasound.
In an NSF-supported study, he has demonstrated the effectiveness of
the coupled ultrasound/vacuum technology. The team is pushing the technology
further by investigating the use of ultrasound to decontaminate the
sediments and then separate the cleaned sediments using acoustical energy
instead of applying vacuum.
NJIT is a public research university enrolling over
8,200 bachelor's, master's and doctoral students in 80 degree programs
through its five colleges: Newark College of Engineering, New Jersey School
of Architecture, College of Science and Liberal Arts, the School of Management
and the Albert Dorman Honors College. Research initiatives include manufacturing,
microelectronics, multimedia, transportation, computer science, solar astrophysics,
environmental engineering and science, and architecture and building science.
According to Yahoo! Internet Life magazine rankings, NJIT has been
America's most wired public university for three consecutive years.