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Engineering in Medicine and Biology Society

Santa Clara Valley Chapter

The Santa Clara Valley Chapter of the IEEE Engineering in Medicine and Biology provides the opportunity to stay informed about developments in technology and medicine associated with all types of biomedical engineering.

EMBS meetings include the opportunity to sit down with the speaker over dinner before the formal presentation. Get details here.

Summary: EMBS Meeting
Wednesday, September 20, 2017 at 7:30pm
Room M-114, Stanford University Medical School

Title: kV X-ray Digital Tomosynthesis Image Tracking of Respiratory Motion During The Delivery of MV Radiotherapy Treatment of Cancer
Speaker: Larry Partain
Director of Clinical Research, Silicon Valley Operations, TeleSecurity Sciences

Abstract Summary:
External beam radiotherapy, widely applied in the treatment of lung cancer, directs a beam of gamma rays from outside a patient to enter the patient's body to destroy a malignant lesion, as this focused treatment beam circles the patient's body, for a lesion positioned near the center of rotation. In free breathing patients, the cancer lesion can easily move up and down a cm or more during respiratory cycles (every 4 to 6 sec.) for continuous treatments that can typically last a minute or more. Since real time viewing of respiratory motion of objects has not usually been available during radiotherapy, the standard protocol delivers this lethal dose over the total volume traversed by the lesion during multiple breathing cycles. Unfortunately this directly kills about 2% of the patients treated and seriously injures a larger fraction due to the radiation damage to healthy surrounding tissues. The success of this x-ray tomosynthesis tracking technology has the potential to significantly reduce the magnitude of such collateral damage.

Biography Summary:
Larry Partain is the Director of Clinical Research for TeleSecurity Sciences. Much of his professional career has focused on translational research with electronic devices and systems that offer a promise to substantially improve management of cancer or other diseases.

More information, dinner invitation, and maps can be found here.

Summary: Photonics Society Meeting
Tues Sept 5, 5:30pm: Networking and snacks, 6:30 - 8pm: Seminar
Intel Building SC-12, 3600 Juliette Lane, Santa Clara

Title: Reverse-Engineering the Neural Circuits for Human Spatial and Color Vision
Speaker: Dr. Austin Roorda, Ph.D
University of California, Berkeley

Abstract Summary:
Much of our knowledge about how each type of sensory neuron works has been learned in dissected preparations, which offer precise control over experimental conditions. To understand how the signals that arise from single sensory neurons are handled downstream by the nervous system-an in vivo approach is necessary. The challenge here is that stimulation of individual neurons is difficult when they sit within an array of similar receptors, with the array itself hidden inside a sensory organ. The eye offers one exception to this situation, with the cornea and lens affording a view of the retina that is only obscured by optical imperfections. Recent advances in ocular imaging now make it possible to overcome these imperfections and to stimulate individual targeted cells with light. In my talk, I will describe this technology and how we are using it to reveal the neural circuitry that underlies human spatial and color vision.

Biography Summary:
Austin Roorda received his Ph.D from the University of Waterloo in 1996 with joint degrees in Vision Science & Physics. Since that time, he has been pioneering applications of adaptive optics and ophthalmoscopy. Since 2005, he's been at the UC Berkeley School of Optometry where he is a member of the Vision Science, Bioengineering and Neuroscience graduate programs. He is a Fellow of the Optical Society of America, the Association for Research in Vision and Ophthalmology and the American Academy of Optometry.

Admission is free, but registration is required. Go here for more information and registration.

Summary: Computer Intelligence Society Meeting
Tues Sept 26, 6:30 - 8:30pm: Seminar
Intel Building SC-12, 3600 Juliette Lane, Santa Clara

Texas Instruments Building E Conference Center, 2900 Semiconductor Drive, Santa Clara
Title: Hebbian Learning and the LMS Algorithm
Speaker: Professor Bernard Widrow
Stanford University

Abstract Summary:
Hebb's learning rule can be summarized as "neurons that fire together wire together." Wire together means that the weight of the synaptic connection between any two neurons is increased when both are firing. Hebb introduced the concept of synaptic plasticity, and his rule is widely accepted in the field of neurobiology. When imagining a neural network trained with this rule, a question naturally arises. What is learned with "fire together wire together," and what purpose could this rule actually have? Not having a good answer has long kept Hebbian learning from engineering applications. The issue is taken up here and possible answers will be forthcoming.

Biography Summary:
Bernard Widrow joined the faculty of Stanford University in 1959, where he is currently Professor of Electrical Engineering, Emeritus. Dr. Widrow is a Life Fellow of the IEEE and a Fellow of AAAS. He received the IEEE Centennial Medal in 1984, the Alexander Graham Medal in 1986, the IEEE Signal Processing Society Medal in 1986, the IEEE Neural Networks Pioneer Medal in 1991, the IEEE Millennium Medal in 2000, and the Benjamin Franklin Medal for Engineering from the Franklin Institute of Philadelphia in 2001. He was inducted into the National Academy of Engineering in 1995, and the Silicon Valley Engineering Hall of Fame in 1999.

The LMS (least mean square) algorithm was discovered by Widrow and Hoff in 1959, ten years after Hebb's classic book first appeared. Today, this is the most widely used learning algorithm, used in every MODEM in the world. It has been applied in telecommunications systems, control systems, signal processing, adaptive noise cancelling, adaptive antenna arrays, etc.

Admission is free for IEEE members and $5 for nonmembers. Registration is required. Go here for more information and registration.

Give Back through the EnCorps Teaching Fellowship for STEM Professionals. Mid year Application Deadline is 11/20/17

The EnCorps STEM Teachers Program empowers STEM industry professionals to transform public education through teaching in high needs schools. Heading into their 10th year of public service, EnCorps offers a selective Fellowship through which STEM professionals can give back to students in need in a highly supported, low-risk way and explore a new career in teaching. EnCorps provides comprehensive training and support so Fellows are able to engage effectively with students and achieve real impact.

If you would like to learn more about how you can use your technical expertise and professional experience to help students, please join EnCorps next live webinar (or watch a recorded one), read their applicant FAQs, or get in touch with David Taus.

SF Bay Area Director - or 510-708-3224.

When you are ready, you can start your application to the EnCorps Fellowship here. The mid-year deadline for our 2018 cohort of Fellows is November 20, 2017, apply now!

Bio2device Group Meeting
The Bio2Device Group (B2DG) is a premier organization dedicated to all professionals in the Life Sciences industry within the San Francisco Bay Area. Membership is free and open to anyone in the Pharmaceutical, Biotechnology, Medical Device, Diagnostics, Healthcare, Life Science Tools, and Laboratory Service industries.

The Bio2Device Group's events provide the latest industry information through weekly educational programs and face-to-face interactive opportunities to build and maintain a career network. The educational talks are designed to help members keep up to date, continue to grow in their field, as well as explore other industry sectors and corporate functions.

More details are here.

SF Bay Area Biomedical Engineering Society Quarterly Meetings
February 7, May 2, August 1, and November 7 in 2017

The Mission of the BMES is to build and support the biomedical engineering community, locally, nationally and internationally, with activities designed to communicate recent advances, discoveries, and inventions; promote education and professional development; and integrate the perspectives of the academic, medical, governmental, and business sectors.

For more information, contact Denise Forkey, Co-Founder and President, (650) 799-9258 or

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Past Meetings
See the types of subjects we offer!
A list of meeting abstracts and biographies for past years can be found here.

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