The Bhama-Ratner Artificial Heart & Mechanical circulatory sciences Advancement (B.R.A.H.M.A.) Lab is a novel research endeavor to design and innovate medical devices involved in artificial heart and mechanical circulatory support technology. The approximately 800 sq. ft. lab is located at the Medical Laboratories in the Carver College of Medicine at University of Iowa. The lab was developed by Jay K. Bhama, MD, who serves as the Principle Investigator and Medical Director, and Albert Ratner, PhD who serves as the Principle Investigator and Engineering Director.
Currently supported by the Department of Surgery, the lab focuses on applying a newly designed flow-regulating valve to common health care applications that involve mechanical circulation of blood such as LVADs, ECMO, cardiopulmonary bypass, and hemodialysis. By converting these typically continuous flow devices to pulsatile devices using this innovative valve technology, the group hopes to optimize clinical efficiency and efficacy of these therapies.
The lab also is actively working to re-configure and design current LVAD technology by introducing wireless energy transfer options that will reduce the size of or eliminate current components that patients must carry with them while on device support improving safety and quality of life for the patients. Other projects include the design of: 1) a novel, miniature, highly portable ECMO device for use by civilian and military first-responders, 2) an innovative, sensor driven, implantable drug delivery device for use in the treatment of diabetes and heart failure and 3) an innovative liquid state battery for use in implantable medical technologies. As one of only a handful of similarly collaborative medical/engineering labs in the country, BRAHMA Lab offers a unique environment for innovation by bringing engineer and medical/surgical expertise to a common location.
For more information about the work being done within the BRAHMA Lab please visit our research section.