research in bone biology aims to improve our understanding of human variability
in microstructural and geometric properties of bone. I am interested in understanding how the size and shape of
whole bones, as well as the distribution, quantity and quality of the mineralized
tissue that forms the bone, reflect both evolutionary constraints of skeletal
growth and development, and responsiveness to mechanical loading during
life. My research has focused on examining bone microstructure, bone
function and the process of bone aging in humans. Specifically, I have studied variability in selected material (i.e.
histological composition) and structural (i.e. geometric shape) properties
of bone within a sample of adult modern human mid-shaft femora, examining
the interactions between these variables as related to biomechanical loading. This research has applications to both the study of age related bone
diseases such as osteoporosis, as well as to the reconstruction of health
and activities of past populations (through the study of archaeological
My current research activities include studies of bone growth and development in order to better understand how these processes influence the attainment of adult bone morphology and quality at macrostructural, microstructural and nanostructural length scales. I am also interested in further integrating analyses of bone microstructure with theoretical modeling of the biomechanics of human locomotion, in an effort to better understand how changes in bone structure affect fracture risk.
I have recently established the Bone Biology Laboratory, which is dedicated to the study of bone quality, structure and adaptation during growth, aging and disease. The laboratory is located at Drexel's Queen Lane campus, established with support from the Department of Orthopedic Surgery. The facility will provide Drexel students and residents new opportunities to participate in bone biology research, as well as to foster interdisciplinary research in musculoskeletal biology between Basic Science, Clinical Orthopedics and Engineering disciplines.
|I am primarily engaged in teaching anatomy and microanatomy to first year
medical students, as part of Drexel's PIL and IFM programs. I also participate
in an advanced anatomy course for Orthopedic Surgery Residents, and will
be advising some residents in their research internships. In the past, I
have taught at the undergraduate level in Physical Anthropology, including
courses such as human osteology, forensic anthropology, and comparative
primate anatomy. For more information on any of these teaching activities,
please visit my teaching page.