PhD position on Computational model of guided growth in immature skeleton for custom-made correction of deformities @Universitat Pompeu Fabra

Limb deformities in children motivate frequently pediatric orthopedic consultations, because of angular (genus valgus / varus), torsional (internal / external torsion) or longitudinal (leg length discrepancy) bone growth disorder, or combinations thereof. We currently apply guided growth techniques with implants that temporarily block the physis. These techniques correctly solve genu valgus but are not as effective for genu varus or leg length discrepancy and are not effective for torsional or combined deformities. In addition, these techniques often lead to complications such as the emergence of deformities in other planes or the change of epiphyseal joint shape.

The objective of the present PhD project is to create a computational model of physical growth that allows to customize the treatment of a specific deformity through individualized designs of implant and the ability of the devices to correct the deformity with the greatest efficiency and the shortest time. It is part of a larger scale project that combines the physeal surgery in experimental animal (pig) and computer developments for the simulation model of physial growth, in collaboration with the children Hospital Sant Joan de Deu (SJDD), Barcelona.

The computational model development stands for the core of the proposed PhD thesis at BCN MedTech. It will combine image analysis and mechanobiological theories of epiphyseal bone growth, through finite element modelling, to simulate different growth guidance systems made of plates or screws. The model will be uniquely calibrated and validated against it ability to recreate and correct deformities against the experimental animal model. Eventually, it will be transferred to the physiological characteristics of the human bone, leading to a pipeline of models and simulations to properly plan the surgical correction of growth deformities in patients.

More information can be found here:

Application: Please send: · Full CV · motivation letter · two reference letters · Academic transcripts to jerome.noailly@upf.edu by August 31th, at the latest.