Some virtuosos play the piano to perfection, others paint like Picasso, but for MGH physician-researchers, talent lies in the art of discovery.

Journey of discovery

13/Jun/2014

PUSHING BOUNDARIES: From left, Lillemoe, Tompkins, Parekkadan, Irimia and Toner

Some virtuosos play the piano to perfection, others paint like Picasso, but for MGH physician-researchers, talent lies in the art of discovery.

On May 20, the Department of Surgery and MGPO Board of Trustee Art Goldstein, hosted an evening lecture, “Starting the Wheel of Discovery: The Surgical Engineering and Innovation Center,” at the Paul S. Russell, MD, Museum of Medical History and Innovation.

Keith Lillemoe, MD, MGH chief of Surgery, welcomed guests to the third annual lecture series that featured four speakers from the Division of Surgery, Science and Bioengineering in the Department of Surgery – Ronald Tompkins, MD, ScD, director of the Division of Surgery, Science and Bioengineering; Mehmet Toner, PhD, director of the BioMEMS Resource Center; Daniel Irimia, MD, PhD, associate director of the BioMEMS Resource Center; and Biju Parekkadan, PhD, a bioengineer in the BioMEMS Resource Center.

“When you identify significant clinical challenges without an immediate solution, sometimes new fields of investigations emerge,” said Tompkins. “Science remains the core of our operation.”

The lecture focused on the ways in which physician-researchers are collaborating beyond traditional boundaries to bring together knowledge and tools from life sciences, physical sciences, medicine, engineering and beyond to stimulate innovative research.

“It is not what we do; it is the journey,” said Toner. “When you go to the extreme, you discover – and we do that well. We are constantly pushing the boundaries of our knowledge. “

The annual lecture series focuses on different aspects of surgery, to demonstrate the breadth and depth of the department’s range of service.

“This was a wonderful opportunity to highlight the role of engineers in medicine,” said Lillemoe. “By viewing the human body as a chemical engineering machine, our work has an even greater impact on human health and preventative medicine.”



Read more articles from the 06/13/14 Hotline issue.