Brad Edelman (CMU 2012)
Growing up in Denver, Colorado, Brad Edelman '12 loved working on cars and figuring how all the pieces fit together. Now, the junior Mechanical Engineering and Biomedical Engineering major has channeled that inquisitiveness into figuring out how the human body operates. With his sights set on medical school, Edelman has been exploring and preparing for the medical field in a variety of ways. For the past several months he has been investigating the biomechanical properties of organs as part of his research in Steven Abramowitch's lab at the Musculoskeletal Research Center at the University of Pittsburgh.
"My research project focuses on pelvic organ prolapse, when the muscles and ligaments supporting the pelvic organs weaken, causing the organs to slip out of place," said Edelman. "We're experimenting with adding meshes to the tissue to add strength."
As part of his study, Edelman is looking at how various risk factors, such as increased intra-abdominal pressure due to pregnancy and obesity, contribute to pelvic organ prolapse.
"The ultimate goal," he said, "is to see if we can create a more well-supported pelvic floor."
He undertook this research project without any previous research experience, and it was eye opening. "It's been really interesting because I'm able to apply what I learned in class to a real problem in the medical field."
After conducting research full time during the summer, Edelman's busy schedule has limited his time in the lab now that the school year is in session. Between a full course load and playing on Carnegie Mellon's men's soccer team, Edelman's schedule is packed. But he made time to work in Abramowitch's lab on Fridays-he joined the research project at the beginning of the study and hopes to see it through to the end.
When he's not conducting research or pursuing his double major, you can find Edelman on the soccer field as one of the team's starting wide midfielders. The team had the best season in school history last year and advanced to the Sweet 16 of the NCAA tournament, and they promise to have another great season this year.
Edelman plans to apply to medical school after graduation, but may wait a year or two so that he can pursue a Master's degree in Biomedical Engineering at CMU.