Dimitra Blana

Dimitra Blana

Lecturer in Health Data Science

University of Aberdeen

Biography

I am a Biomedical Engineer and Lecturer in Health Data Science at the University of Aberdeen. I am a member of the Aberdeen Centre for Health Data Science, where I develop and use computational tools, aiming to improve human health.

Interests

  • Computational modelling
  • Biomechanics and human movement analysis
  • Open and reproducible science
  • Promoting women in STEM

Education

  • PhD in Biomedical Engineering, 2008

    Case Western Reserve University, USA

  • MSc in Biomedical Engineering, 2003

    Case Western Reserve University, USA

  • BEng in Electrical and Computer Engineering, 2001

    National Technical University of Athens, Greece

Experience

 
 
 
 
 

Data Scientist

Aparito

2018 – 2019 Wales, UK
Aparito is a digital health company, that uses mobile phone applications and wearables to monitor patients outside the hospital setting. I supported the remote patient monitoring studies by analysing data, including activity and physiological signals from wearable devices, real-time symptoms, medication adherence and patient reported outcomes.
 
 
 
 
 

Research Fellow in Biomedical Engineering

Keele University

2013 – 2019 Keele, UK
I developed computational models of the musculoskeletal system and taught coding and biomedical signal processing on the MSc in Biomedical Engineering.
 
 
 
 
 

Research Consultant

Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago, and Functional Electrical Stimulation Centre, USA

2009 – 2013
I developed computational models of the upper limb and hand for large-scale projects funded by the US National Institutes of Health. In parallel, I lectured on Biomechanics for a year (2011-2012) at the Sports and Exercise Science Department, Aberystwyth University, UK.

Awards and Honours

  • Mozilla Open Leader for the CMAS-open-code project (2019)
  • Panelist at the “Human transformation - moving and sensing” workshop organised by the Royal Society (2019)
  • EPSRC Recognising Inspiring Scientists and Engineers (RISE) Connector (2018)
  • Exhibitor at Royal Society Summer Science Exhibition (2018)
  • National Center for Simulation in Rehabilitation Research (NCSRR) Visiting Scholarship (2015)
  • NCSRR Outstanding Researcher Award (2013)
  • ISG - MBEC Young Investigator Best Applied Research Paper Award (2008)
  • Medtronic Foundation Fellowship (2005)
  • Case Prime Fellowship (2001)

Projects

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Tech for paralysis

A personalised design methodology to restore arm movement in people with high-level spinal cord injury

Hand prosthesis control using computer modelling

Natural control of prosthetic hands using computational modelling

CMAS Open Code

A free online platform for sharing code and resources among clinical movement analysis laboratories

Mobile Health Technology

Remote Monitoring of Epilepsy in South African Children

Funding

  • NHS Grampian Endowment grant: Integrating real time surveillance and dynamic modelling of COVID-19 in Grampian to inform an adaptive healthcare response (2020-2021)
  • Clinical movement analysis society (CMAS) small grant: A free online platform for sharing movement analysis code and resources (2019)
  • EPSRC Healthcare Technologies grant: Personalised approach to restoration of arm function in people with high-level tetraplegia (2018-2021)
  • Research Councils UK Public Engagement with Research Catalysts: Co-Production and Creativity: ethos, typologies and innovation in public engagement practice (2017-2018)
  • Keele Innovation Fund: Using digitally enhanced creative methods to engage the community with biomedical engineering research (2017)
  • Orthopaedic Institute PhD studentship: Biomechanical modelling of toe walking gait to inform the prescription of ankle foot orthoses in children with cerebral palsy (2016-2019)
  • US National Institute of Child Health and Human Development: Intracortical control of FES-restored arm and hand function in people with spinal cord injury, subcontract with Case Western Reserve University (2012-2014)
  • US National Institute of Biomedical Imaging and Bioengineering: Prosthesis Control by Forward Dynamic Simulation of the Intact Biomedical System, subcontract with the Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago (2009-2011)

Publications

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Improving predictor selection for injury modelling methods in male footballers

OBJECTIVES: This objective of this study was to evaluate whether combining existing methods of elastic net for zero-inflated Poisson …

Model-based control of individual finger movements for prosthetic hand function

Prosthetic devices for hand difference have advanced considerably in recent years, to the point where the mechanical dexterity of a …

Study of the measurement and predictive validity of the functional movement screen

OBJECTIVE: The aim of the study was to evaluate the reported measurement capabilities and predictive validity of the Functional …

The stabilizing function of superficial shoulder muscles changes between single-plane elevation and reaching tasks

OBJECTIVE: The goal of this study was to determine whether and how much the stabilizing role of the shoulder muscles changes as a …

Musculoskeletal modelling simulation with optimisation to predict the morphological parameters of the calf muscle