Biomedical Data Processing for Future Medical Research and Healthcare Delivery


About the Speaker: Professor (David) Dagan Feng is Director, Biomedical and Multimedia Information Technology (BMIT) Research Group, Funding Head, School of Information Technology (recently renamed as School of Computer Science) and Funding Director, Institute of Biomedical Engineering & Technology (before the recent formation of the School of Biomedical Engineering) at the University of Sydney. He received his ME in Electrical Engineering & Computer Science (EECS) from Shanghai Jiao Tong University in 1982, MSc in Biocybernetics and PhD in Computer Science from the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) in 1985 and 1988 respectively, where he received the Crump Prize for Excellence in Medical Engineering. In conjunction with his team members and students, he has been responsible for more than 50 key research projects, published over 900 scholarly research papers, pioneered several new research directions, and made a number of landmark contributions in his field. He has served as Chair of the International Federation of Automatic Control (IFAC) Technical Committee on Biological and Medical Systems, Special Area Editor / Associate Editor / Editorial Board Member for a dozen of core journals in his area, and Scientific Advisor for a number of prestigious organizations. He has been invited to give over 100 keynote presentations in 23 countries and regions, and has organized / chaired over 100 major international conferences / symposia / workshops. Professor Feng is Fellow of ACS, HKIE, IET, IEEE, and Australian Academy of Technological Sciences and Engineering.

Abstract: The repaid growth of various types of data from innumerable diverse sources, such as microwave new sensors, images, and other devices (related to genes, proteins, metabolism, pathology, organs, systems, individuals and population) has created an incredible opportunity for new information findings, knowledge development and services improvements. The large volume of data sets has also created a huge opportunity for artificial intelligence applications in biomedicine. Until very recently, most of biomedical research and healthcare delivery are still based on their traditional ways and their directly related information, such as diagnosis images, blood test results, etc. However, such practices have started to have a revolutionary change, due to much previously ignored information is becoming so relevant, and can possibly be integrated into the biomedical research and healthcare delivery equations, such as precision medicine and disease management. In this talk, we will discuss the impact of big data and artificial intelligence in biomedicine and how they will reshape the future medical research and healthcare delivery.



Physical Phantoms for Evaluation of Wireless In-body Medical Devices


About the Speaker: Koichi Ito received the B.S. and M.S. degrees from Chiba University, Japan, and the Ph.D degree from Tokyo Institute of Technology, Japan.  He served as Deputy Vice-President for Research and Director of the Center for Frontier Medical Engineering, Chiba University.  He is currently a Professor Emeritus and Visiting Professor at the Center for Frontier Medical Engineering, Chiba University.

His main research interests include small antennas for mobile communications, microwave antennas for medical applications such as cancer treatment, research on evaluation of the interaction between electromagnetic fields and the human body by use of phantoms, and antenna systems for body-centric wireless communications. 

Dr. Ito is a Life Fellow of the IEEE and a Fellow of the IEICE, Japan.  He served as Chair of the IEICE Technical Committee on Human Phantoms for Electromagnetics, Chair of the IEEE AP-S Japan Chapter, an Associate Editor for the IEEE Transactions on Antennas and Propagation, an AdCom member for the IEEE AP-S, a Distinguished Lecturer for the IEEE AP-S, General Chair of IEEE iWAT2008, Chair of the IEICE Technical Committee on Antennas and Propagation, a member of the Board of Directors, the Bioelectromagnetics Society (BEMS), a Councilor to the Asian Society of Hyperthermic Oncology (ASHO), General Chair of ISAP2012, and a Delegate to the European Association on Antennas and Propagation (EurAAP).  He currently serves as a Vice-President of the Japanese Society for Thermal Medicine (JSTM), Vice-Chair of URSI Commission K, and as IEEE AP-S President for 2019.

Abstract: In recent years, wireless medical devices have been widely used, for example, to monitor physiological parameters, to deliver drugs and to stimulate nervous systems.  One of the key technologies for R&D of such wireless medical devices is body-centric wireless communications.  Wireless in-body medical devices can be divided into three categories based on the way of insertion into the human body, i.e., implantables, ingestibles, and injectables.

It is almost impossible to utilize a real human body to evaluate in-body medical devices experimentally.  Instead, human-body physical phantoms which have nearly the same relative permittivity and conductivity of human tissues are indispensable for such experiments.

In the experimental evaluation of the performances of wireless in-body medical devices, human-body physical phantoms are usually used.  It should be noted that electrical and thermal characteristics of the phantoms are dependent on phantom materials.  In addition, various shapes of phantoms are used in the measurement, e.g., head, hand, abdomen, torso, whole-body, etc.  The size and shape of phantoms sometimes affect radiation characteristics of wireless in-body devices in particular.

Different types of human tissue-equivalent phantoms are utilized for their purposes in the experimental investigations.  Typical physical phantoms are liquid, gel, semi-hard (semi-solid) and solid phantoms.  Semi-hard (semi-solid) phantoms are suitable to the experiments for in-body medical devices because it is easy to embed devices at the right position in the phantoms and to fix them without any support. 

Conventional semi-hard phantoms are not transparent.  If they are transparent, it would be easy to locate the devices and to confirm their conditions from outside of the phantoms.  By choosing appropriate materials and employing special techniques, transparent semi-hard phantoms have been realized and tested.  A few examples of such transparent phantoms will be introduced in the presentation.