The February 2015 issue of IBE's e-Life Newsletter.
The Institute of Biological Engineering


About e-LIFE
Welcome to e-Life, the official newsletter of IBE, dedicated to the innovative research and technology of biological engineering! This monthly newsletter is sent out to our members as a mailblast.
February 2015

Annual Meeting Update

There's Still Time to Register - Meet us in St. Louis on March 5th!

Join us March 5-7, 2015 at the Crowne Plaza - St. Louis-Clayton for the IBE 2015 Annual Meeting, for technical sessions, multidisciplinary interactions and networking with your peers. The conference will include sessions on key areas of biological engineering, including biomaterials, bioenergy, biosensors, nanosystems, ecological and environmental engineering, synthetic biology, and much more.
The meeting is also an excellent venue for undergraduate and graduate students to develop professional skills and to network through a number of student-centric activities, including the bioethics essay competition, student research and poster sessions, and various social activities.
Click here for more information on the 2015 Annual Conference, including registration details and hotel information.
We look forward to seeing you soon in St. Louis!

Register today!  


Membership News

Renew Your IBE Membership and Continue Your Benefits!

If you haven’t done so already, remember to renew your IBE membership for 2015! IBE membership encourages inquiry and interest in biological engineering, and supports: 
  • Scholarship in education, research and service
  • Professional standards for engineering practices
  • Professional and technical development of biological engineering
  • Interactions among academia, industry and government
  • Public understanding and responsible uses of biological engineering products.  
One of the most exciting networking opportunities is our Annual Conference, held each spring. When you renew your membership, you will receive the discounted Member registration rate for the conference.
There are many ways to stay involved with the organization. Click here to discover ways to get involved by joining a committee, assisting with the Annual Conference or promoting membership recruitment:
Should you have any questions or concerns, please don’t hesitate to contact the IBE headquarters staff at any time. We can be reached via phone at 859-977-7450, or via email at
We appreciate your continued interest in the field of biological engineering.  


IBE Video Competition: Improving Our World Through Biological Engineering

In order to excite and inspire the world about the wonders and importance of biological engineering, IBE is hosting a biological engineering student video submission and competition program. Videos should meet the requirements listed below. Each year IBE will honor the best video productions by awarding the top 3 teams at the IBE annual meeting.
See IBE web site:
Video requirements:
  • Video approximately 2-4 minutes long.
  • Focus on biological engineering:
    • An exciting research result
    • An inspiring educational activity
    • An interesting or useful experimental technique
    • A mystery, key technical or social challenge, or unanswered question
  • Highlight a social challenge, need, motivation, or broader impact associated with the topic.
  • Preferably teach at least one biological engineering related concept in an innovative way.
  • Contain at least 1 visually compelling sequence
  • Involve a team with at least 1 IBE member
  • Whenever possible highlight diversity
  • Acknowledge/integrate the IBE organization  
Each video should be accompanied by a 1-slide summary (click here to download the template) whose content will be used for broad dissemination.
Judging Criteria:
Quality of presentation
Alignment with video requirements described above
Number of views (over a relevant period to be fair to those who submitted closer to the IBE conference).
Submit your production using the web page:
Demonstrate your creativity and passion for biological engineering!


What is Biological Engineering? Find Out More and Ask an Expert!

Biological Engineering is a diverse and exciting field where individuals use biology-inspired engineering to solve important problems to create a more sustainable world. Find out more about this rapidly growing discipline by clicking here!

Have more questions? Click here and ask an expert! Several professional biological engineers actively involved in IBE are happy to help you learn more.


New Website Features: Member Focus and Student Spotlight

Member Focus: Mark A. Eiteman

Professor Mark A. Eiteman is a Founding, Charter and Fellow member of IBE. He has distinguished himself with extraordinary contributions to biological engineering and to IBE.

Professor Eiteman was one of the first faculty members who joined the University of Georgia in 1991 to build a new undergraduate degree curriculum in biological engineering. He dared to take on this challenging assignment as an assistant professor in the midst of serious debates questioning whether biological engineering is indeed a new engineering discipline or not. In the process, he help formulate philosophical and technical content for the degree program as well as established a world renowned research that has led to numerous research articles published in most prestigious journals (e.g., PNAS) and patents that are now licensed to prominent industries.

Professor Eiteman recently served as a Fulbright-Nehru Scholar in India for six months where he guided several students and counseled faculty in a prominent university and lectured at several universities throughout the country and in Sri Lanka.

Student Spotlight: Ryan Putman, Utah State University

Ryan Putman has demonstrated amazing research, leadership and academic performance in the Biological Engineering (BE) Department at Utah State University since November 2011 when he started. He has participated in three large research groups at USU including the Sustainable Waste-to-Bioproducts Engineering Center, co-directed by Mark Haidekker, Metabolic Engineering Laboratory, under the direction of Dr. Jixun Zhan, and the Cellular Engineering Laboratory, led by Dr. Charles Miller. He quickly demonstrated leadership in all three laboratories, and, in Dr. Miller's laboratory, he led the USU/BE iGEM (international Genetically Engineered Machines competition) team to national first place awards for three consecutive years (2012, 2013 and 2014). He is a dedicated researcher and leader, with outstanding ideas, insights and commitment, and all with a sense of humor.

Ryan was elected as the national undergraduate student representative to the national Institute of Biological Engineering (IBE) organization for three consecutive year (2013 - 2015). Ryan has an excellent ability to communicate research projects, goals and results to both technical and non-technical audiences. He lead the production of a video that highlighted the IBE and USU that was introduced at the 2014 IBE annual meeting. He also worked with Dr. Asif Rahman in 2014 to initiate an "Introduction to IBE" event especially for students at the national meeting. He was one of three people to represent the IBE at the USA Science and Engineering Festival in Washington, D.C. in 2014, led by Dr. Ben Stuart. He was elected president of USU Biological Engineering Club for two years. Ryan has made professional presentations at multiple conferences eleven times as the primary presented since 2011. He was one of five national finalists for the Bioethics Essay Competition at the 2013 IBE Annual Conference. And most recently, Ryan was selected as the USU College of Engineering Outstanding Undergraduate Researcher, among the outstanding undergraduate researchers of six departments.

If you would like to nominate yourself or another IBE member for the "Member Focus" or the "Student Spotlight," email Cody Jones at IBE Headquarters, with a few sentences describing yourself, your past achievements, and  your current projects. Please include a headshot if possible.


e-Life is your IBE news source, distributed via email every other month. Archived versions are available for download on the IBE Web site. If you have any questions, comments or ideas for the e-Life Newsletter please contact Courtney Devine at
Copyright © 2015 Institute of Biological Engineering, All rights reserved.
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