Kinematics is not just for our canine colleagues!

We recently welcomed a group of Engineers to use our gait analysis facilities as part of their work on digital technologies and their use in teaching people new skills or helping them with their work. The aim was to compare the effectiveness of video training to motion-capture training shown in a virtual reality environment, and the kinematics equipment allowed this.

Thomas Bohné and his team are interested in exploring new cyber-human technologies and their potential to augment human capabilities. The research team is part of a strategic research agenda at the Department of Engineering's Institute for Manufacturing (IfM) on the future of skills and human work in manufacturing, which is led by Prof Tim Minshall. Over the past 12 months the team has carried out several experiments with technologies such as AR/VR, haptic gloves and Mocap. In a recent research project, the team collaborated with Prof Matthew Allen and his team from the Department of Veterinary Medicine, and Dr Thomas Stone from the Cambridge Clinical Movement Centre. Together they digitised human work movements of an industrial assembly task and used these data to build a virtual reality training simulation. This simulation was then used as part of a pilot experiment to investigate performance differences between groups receiving different trainings.

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Taking Care of Heroes

Many of our patients for shockwave therapy are on reduced/restricted exercise during their treatment, but we understand it can be very hard for both dogs and owners, particularly if they are used to a lot of exercise.
Jaffa came to us for a course of shockwave to treat arthritis in her elbow, and is a very important member of a local search and rescue team.
She is still undergoing treatment, and on "light duties", but the rest of her team are missing her, and hopefully with ongoing medical management at the QVSH she will be back on duty in no time!

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Welcome to Fran

Fran is working with us as part of her undergraduate Engineering Studies into Mechanical and Bioengineering. The aim of the project is to establish whether accelerometers can be used to measure the forces a dog exerts on the ground during motion. This would be to allow data gathering in a more realistic environment, where the speed and directions of movement are not fixed by the type of test. Combining the ground forces with joint angle data will allow rough estimations of the magnitudes of forces in the leg joints, which could be used to help test the suitability and efficacy of different types of total knee replacement in dogs.

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Feature in Graduate News

We are delighted that our work in collaboration with the Queen’s Veterinary School Hospital has been featured in the most recent Graduate Newsletter, sent to all Veterinary Graduates from the University of Cambridge. Produced by Camvet, the charity who work tirelessly raising funds for the QVSH, which have helped to provide specialist teaching equipment and state-of-the-art diagnostic and surgical equipment.

It is lovely to see Rocco, a patient that we worked with by providing 3D modelling and a 3D printed surgical guide for his specialist surgery.

And Murphy who came to the QVSH for investigation into lameness and we were able to provide shockwave therapy as part of his ongoing treatment.

Investigating Stem Cells

Sara has been busy on her Phd studies and as part of her work has been investigating innovative tissue engineering approaches for bone regeneration. These images of Mesenchymal Stem Cells (MSCs) have all been produced here in the lab with different imaging and processing techniques.

Placement from the Nuffield Foundation

We have been delighted to welcome William Tan from Hills Road Sixth Form College, who won a 4 week research placement here, organised with the Nuffield Foundation.

The scheme allows students to work under supervision as a professional scientist, and provides opportunities to learn new skills.

With supervision from Charlotte Palmer, William has been working hard investigating 3 separate canine osteosarcoma cell lines, comparing their growth rates and how they differ  in different simulated environments.

Osteosarcoma affects a large number of our canine patients, and our aim is to better understand the disease as it grows and metastasises. Ultimately we hope to relate this to the prognosis for both canine and human patients, and how they might be affected.

Thank you for all your hard work William and good luck for the future!


Research collaboration bears rewards

Our collaboration with Kirsten Haeusler and the team at Tierphysiotherapie Team Haeusler has resulted in the Research Award of Excellence at the IARVPT World Rehab Summit 2018 in Knoxville, Tennessee! Kirsten presented an investigation into the reproducibility of an instrumented pressure-sensitive treadmill using the Zebris Canidgait with clinical cases from their caseload in Stuttgart.

This was the culmination of a lot of team work both in Stuttgart and here at the Department of Veterinary Medicine. Congratulations Kirsten for a brilliant poster and thanks to everyone for all the hard work!

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Prizewinning Poster for Charlotte

Congratulations to Charlotte Palmer who won Best Poster at the recent research afternoon event in the Department of Veterinary Medicine! Charlotte presented her work; FACS-based Isolation of Primary and Metastatic Osteosarcoma Cells which forms part of her Phd. It was a great event for sharing the hard work going on here, with colleagues from a wide field of research. Well done Charlotte!


Farewell to Luke

We are very sorry to say goodbye to Luke who has been a great asset during his time here! He has been running the Robot, and in fact he not only achieved a distinction for his final project "Robotic Testing of Canine Knee Replacement" but also a First for his Degree!

Well done Luke!

Good luck for all your future endeavours and thank you for all your hard work.


Canine Total Knee Replacement

Last week we travelled to Ohio State University to work with Biomedtrix on the Total Knee Replacement Course. It was great to see such enthusiasm for the procedure!

Matthew Allen took the participants through each step of the surgery, including pre-operative planning, templating and the key surgical components. A great course, everyone worked really well together and thanks to everyone at Biomedtrix and the staff at OSU for looking after us so well!

3D scanning well underway

Lisa has been busy so far scanning lots of dogs to investigate conformation of hind and forelimbs. All the dogs have been under anaesthetic for another procedure, and we can simply support their limb in position for a quick scan with the 3D scanner. Lisa then puts in all the hard work to generate a model.


CPD at the Department of Veterinary Medicine

A huge thank you to everyone that came to the CPD event this week!

We really enjoyed talking osteoarthritis and shockwave therapy with lots of local vets, and it was great to share ideas about further treatment for all our arthritic dogs out there. Thanks to Nupsala for their support, and to all our speakers for some very informative talks. Matthew Allen was joined by Karen Cook from Nupsala, and Richard Whitelock from the Queen's Veterinary School Hospital.


A new project to model dogs' legs

We are very pleased to welcome Lisa Grassato to the SDC for a 3 month research project with Professor Matthew Allen.

She joins us from the University of Bologna in Italy where she is undertaking her PhD in Veterinary Medicine, and her project here will involve using our 3D surface scanner to get measurements for dogs legs, with the aim of developing new supportive braces.



The future for Total Hip Replacement Surgery.......

Thanks to Claudia for a great talk today to colleagues at the Department of Veterinary Medicine. The group enjoyed a very interesting presentation about potential benefits of surgical navigation and 3d printing to improve planning and performing canine hip replacement surgery. Including some example pelvises printed on our resin and ABS plastic 3d printers which helped illustrate the vast morphological differences between dogs, and the challenges facing surgeons.

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Professor Kenneth Johnson has been visiting the SDC

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Professor Kenneth Johnson is a visiting professor in the Surgical Discovery Centre at Cambridge from June 2017 till January 2018.   During this time, he will be working on research on stress fractures, as well as use of computer navigation in orthopaedic surgery.   Ken is a graduate of the University of Sydney where he also obtained a Masters and PhD degrees. He completed residency training in surgery at Colorado State University, and since then has worked in academia as an orthopaedic specialist in the USA, UK and Australia.  He has specialist qualifications in surgery as a Diplomate of American College of Veterinary Surgeons, a Diplomate of European College of Veterinary Surgery, as well as being a Fellow of Australian College of Veterinary Scientists.

In addition, Prof Johnson organizes the AO courses on fracture treatment in Columbus Ohio and Sydney and is a past president of AO VET (an international foundation dedicated to fracture treatment in animals)   Research on osteoarthritis, locked nailing of fractures, greyhound stress fractures and locking implants are among his interests.   He is the author of over 110 clinical and research publications on orthopaedics, 30 book chapters, as well as several books including the new fifth edition of Piermattei's Surgical Approaches to Bones and Joints.  In addition he is Editor-in-Chief of the journal Veterinary and Comparative Orthopaedics and Traumatology.  Recently he was given the WSAVA/Hills Pet mobility award for his contributions to clinical research in orthopaedics in dogs and cats.