About the innovator
The Electrical and Computer Engineering Department, one of the founding departments in 1967 of the University of Patras focuses on educational and research activities on Telecommunications and Information Technology, Electronics and Computer Systems, Automatic Control and Power Systems. The Visualization and Virtual Reality Group (VVR) was established in 2012 by Associate Professor Konstantinos Moustakas and is one of the eight separate research groups of the Wire Communications and Information Processing Laboratory (WCL-IT). VVR focuses on basic and applied research in the fields of Biomedical Engineering, Virtual Physiological Humans, Visual Computing and Virtual Reality and has been in the latest years the recipient of several awards in the respective fields for its research output.
OActive project on Twitter
What is the innovation
Within the OActive project, we are interested in predicting the severity of osteoarthritis and then derive a personalized intervention strategy to delay the progression of the disease. To achieve this, we rely on automatic methods for creating multi-scale subject-specific finite element models of the knee from magnetic resonance images. These models are further constrained from experimentally measured kinematics and externally applied forces in order to simulate more complex movement behaviors like gait. Through simulation, we can identify the loading of the soft tissues and decide how to change the habits of individuals through gait retraining and augmented reality. To facilitate the latter, we must be able to monitor and analyze the performance of the subject in real-time and provide the appropriate feedback. To this end, we have also developed methods for performing kinematics and dynamics analysis to predict the internal state of the subject (muscle forces, joint loadings, etc.) in real-time. The maturity of these technologies is in a prototype level, with plans for further validation, evaluation and commercialization.
Out of the lab. Into the market
We think that there are two major outcomes related to our work within the OActive project. The first is related to the subject-specific modeling, simulation and analysis of the knee mechanics, which is of baseline research nature with long term goals targeting not only to osteoarthritis but planning of surgeries for anterior ligament reconstruction and knee replacement through simulation. The second is related to the development of a modular framework for extracting meaningful quantities from experimental measurements and musculoskeletal models in real-time. This can facilitate application in the broad field of rehabilitation, ergonomics, control of exoskeleton and assistive devices. Our plan is to create a minimum viable product of this technology before the end of the project and to provide feedback for future product development. Tools towards this goal will be VC investments and EC instruments like the FTTI.
Benefits of participation in Horizon 2020
Participation in the Framework Programme helped VVR to leverage excellent researchers of the University of Patras and focus on in depth treatment of an interdisciplinary domain. It should be emphasized that this outcome is based on ongoing hard research started from FP7 and progressed now in the context of H2020 into a more mature solution. Collaboration with top EU institutions and cross-fertilization were very important. Moreover through the framework programme members of the VVR group were able to travel and present research work in top scientific venues and further boost excellent research at a worldwide level.
This innovation was funded via H2020 project Oactive