Friday, August 6, 2010

Taylor selected for Veterans Affairs Pre-doctoral Fellowship

Erik Taylor (Biomedical Engineering Graduate Student) was select for the 2010-2011 Veterans Affairs Pre-doctoral Fellowship based on his research to develop anti-bacterial implants for injured soldiers. His clinical mentor is Roy Aaron, Director of the VA Center for Restorative and Regenerative Medicine, and Professor Thomas Webster is his research/academic advisor.

A profile of Erik Taylor:

Growing up roaming the Texan prairies instilled in Erik an ambition to study humanity’s ability to not only co-exist with nature, but to flourish in accordance with Earth’s natural attributes. While one would be hard-pressed to find cattle navigating the roads of a contemporary American metropolis, micro-biotic life flourishes on subways, in apartment complexes, and even in the most allegedly sterile of environments - the modern hospital. Erik's research is geared towards designing treatments for antibiotic resistant biofilms on medical devices. He uses nanotechnology to create novel interfaces promoting the natural elimination of biofilm.

Erik received his Bachelor of Science from the Department of Biomedical Engineering at the University of Texas at Austin. His senior design project was “An arthroscopic tool for the delivery of a thermo-sensitive hydrogel into damaged knee cartilage.” Erik’s research excellence wrought him an Office of the Vice President Undergraduate Research Fellowship for his work with Reese Endowed Professor Miguel Jose Yacaman in the Department of Chemical Engineering.

Erik is currently a graduate student working towards his Ph.D. in Biomedical Engineering at Brown University. He is advised by the Graduate Director of the Center for Biomedical Engineering, Associate Professor Thomas J. Webster. Through Prof. Webster’s guidance and expertise, Erik is working on his thesis entitled “Superparamagnetic Iron Oxide Nanoparticles (SPION) for the Treatment of Implant Infection.” The Society for Biomaterials recently bestowed upon Erik the Student Travel Achievement Recognition (STAR) graduate student award one of its most prestigious graduate student honors for his exemplary work in nanotechnology. He was also a National Science Foundation Graduate K-12 teaching fellow for two years (the maximum duration allowed for the fellowship program) where he taught science to grades 3-6 at Martin Luther King Jr. Elementary School in Providence, Rhode Island.