ESB Mobility Award Winners – 2019

Ehsan Soodmand

Ehsan Soodmand studied Mechanical Engineering for his Bachelor studies and did a master in Biomedical Engineering with a focus on Biomechanics. He started his PhD project in January 2017 at the Julius Wolff Institute for Biomechanics and Musculoskeletal Regeneration at Charité – Universitätsmedizin Berlin. His PhD project is a joint collaborative project between the Computational Mechanobiology group headed by Prof. Sara Checa and the Cellular BioMechanics & BioMaterials group headed by Dr. Ansgar Petersen. In his PhD project, he aims to understand how mechanical forces drive cellular self-organization and soft tissue patterning during the early stages of bone defect healing.

Planned Research Project

Mechanically driven soft tissue patterning during early stage of bone defect healing

ESB Mobility award for young researchers supports Ehsan for a research visit during his PhD. Ehsan will travel to Eindhoven to stay at the Soft Tissue Engineering and Mechanobiology (STEM) research group at the Eindhoven University of Technology, collaborating with Associate Professor Sandra Loerakker. The aim of this ESB Mobility project is to adapt and incorporate a constitutive model of soft tissue growth and remodeling developed in Prof. Loerakker’s research group into the agent-based model for mechanically driven cellular organization, which has been developed in Prof. Checa’s group. The agent-based model includes cells and extracellular matrix and simulates cellular proliferation, cellular migration, matrix deformation and collagen deposition.  This model will be coupled with a finite element model including a constitutive model of collagen fiber remodeling to enable the investigation of mechanically-driven collagen fibers organization during the early healing stages


Amelie Sas

Amelie Sas is a PhD student at the division of Biomechanics in the department of Mechanical Engineering at the KU Leuven (Belgium). She holds a Bachelor of Mechanical-Electrical Engineering and a Master of Biomedical Engineering from the KU Leuven. Right after graduation (2017), she started her PhD under the supervision of Prof Harry van Lenthe on the topic of fracture prevention in patients with metastatic bone disease. Specifically, the goal is to objectively assess femoral bone fracture risk in patients with metastatic bone disease and to quantify the expected effects of prophylactic treatment to reduce fracture risk. For this purpose, Amelie is developing and validating CT‐based finite element models of the proximal femur.

Planned Research Project

The mechanical behavior of PMMA augmented bone specimens extracted from human femoral heads

Thanks to the ESB Mobility Award for Young Researchers Amelie will travel to the Institute for Biomechanics at ETH Zürich, Switzerland. During five months, she will be working with dr. Benedikt Helgason.


The goal of the research stay is to derive accurate material properties for PMMA augmented human femoral bone. MicroCT scans and mechanical tests will be performed on bone specimens extracted from human femoral heads to characterize the morphological and mechanical properties. The results could be implemented in clinical CT-based FE models simulating femoroplasty of the proximal femur as a prophylactic treatment. It is hypothesized that a more accurate material relation will improve the accuracy of the currently existing FE models.