Leading Biomedical Engineer Joins Children’s National Leading Biomedical Engineer Joins Children’s National January 14, 2011

January 14, 2011

Washington, DC– Children’s National Medical Center announced the appointment of Raj Shekhar, PhD, as principal investigator in the Bioengineering Initiative of the Sheikh Zayed Institute for Pediatric Surgical Innovation. A research professor, engineer, and entrepreneur, Dr. Shekhar will join the Institute’s interdisciplinary bioengineering team to focus on surgery innovations involving the fusion of various current surgical and medical imaging technologies.

“The next set of surgery innovations will change how surgeons see their operating field,” said Kurt Newman, MD, senior vice president for the Joseph E. Robert, Jr., Center for Surgical Care and the Sheikh Zayed Institute for Pediatric Surgical Innovation. “Dr. Shekhar’s work, which will build software and technology that allows a surgeon to see as much detail as possible while in the operating room, will make surgery more precise and less invasive.”

One of Dr. Shekhar’s first projects will overlay ultrasound images on top of real-time laparoscopic images during surgery. The result is a multi-dimensional view of the body that allows the surgeon to see not only the immediate surgical field, but the tissues, arteries, organs, and bones that lay beneath the visual surface.

“The traditional timeline for biomedical engineering is quite drawn out, with engineers developing a prototype then waiting for clinical feedback,” said Dr. Shekhar. “At the Sheikh Zayed Institute engineers like myself have the unprecedented opportunity to work side by side with physicians to gain continuous feedback from the beginning, which means more efficient and effective technology development for pediatrics.”

Prior to joining the Institute, Dr. Shekhar was an associate professor of Diagnostic Radiology at the University of Maryland, Baltimore and an affiliate professor of Bioengineering and Electrical & Computer Engineering at the University of Maryland, College Park. He is also the founder of IGI Technologies, a medical imaging technology startup. Dr. Shekhar received his doctorate in biomedical engineering from Ohio State University and a master’s degree in bioengineering from Arizona State University. He has authored or coauthored more than 75 scientific papers, including nearly 40 published in peer-reviewed journals. He holds five U.S. patents.

Made possible by a $150 million gift from the Government of Abu Dhabi, the Sheikh Zayed Institute combines unparalleled innovation and team science to revolutionize four key areas: pain medicine, immunology, bioengineering, and personalized medicine. While other institutions also pursue developments in these topics, the Institute is the first to join research and clinical practice across the four simultaneously with a focus on pediatric surgery.

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Contact: Jennifer Stinebiser or Emily Dammeyer: 202-476-4500.

Childrens National Medical Center
Children’s National Medical Center in Washington, DC, has been serving the nation’s children since 1870. Home to Children’s Research Institute and the Sheikh Zayed Institute for Pediatric Surgical Innovation, Children’s National is consistently ranked among the top pediatric hospitals by U.S.News & World Report and the Leapfrog Group. With 283 beds, more than 1,330 nurses, 550 physicians, and seven regional outpatient centers, Children’s National is the only exclusive provider of pediatric care in the Washington metropolitan area. Children’s National has been recognized by the American Nurses Credentialing Center as a Magnet® designated hospital, the highest level of recognition for nursing excellence that a medical center can achieve. For more information, visit www.ChildrensNational.org, receive the latest news from the Children's National press room, or follow us Facebook and Twitter.


About Children’s National Health System

Children’s National Health System, based in Washington, DC, has been serving the nation’s children since 1870. Children’s National’s hospital is Magnet® designated, and is consistently ranked among the top pediatric hospitals by U.S.News & World Report. Home to the Children’s Research Institute and the Sheikh Zayed Institute for Pediatric Surgical Innovation, Children’s National is one of the nation’s top NIH-funded pediatric institutions. With a community-based pediatric network, eight regional outpatient centers, an ambulatory surgery center, two emergency rooms, an acute care hospital, and collaborations throughout the region, Children’s National is recognized for its expertise and innovation in pediatric care and as an advocate for all children. For more information, visit ChildrensNational.org, or follow us on Facebook and Twitter.

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