Lab News


December - Kyle Martin successfully defends his dissertation, entitled "Agend based modeling of skeletal muscle adaptation". Congratulations, Dr. Martin!

December - The M3 Lab welcomes its newest graduate student: Evan Terrell, in Biomedical Engineering. Welcome!

August - The M3 Lab welcomes its newest graduate students: Adrienne Williams, a PhD student, and Vi Tran, an ME student, both in Biomedical Engineering. Adrienne recently completed her M.S. at North Carolina A&T, and Vi was an M3 Lab researcher. Welcome!

July - Josh completes his postdoctoral research in the M3 Lab and is joining Unilife in Pennsylvania. Thanks for all of your great work over the past 3 years, Josh!

May - Chris Kegelman graduates with a B.S. in Biomedical Engineering. Congratulations! Chris continues his research pursuits as a PhD student at the University of Notre Dame.

May - Josh wins first place at the 2015 UVA Postdoctoral Research Symposium for his platform talk, "Towards eliminating speech impediments in children with cleft palates with computer simulation". Awesome, Josh!

April - Geoff wins a Whitaker International Scholarship to complete a post doc at the Auckland Bioengineering Institute in Auckland, New Zealand.

April - Katie P. wins a Whitaker International Fellowship to complete PhD research at Neuroscience Research Australia for one academic year.

April - Kelley is featured in Virginia Nursing Legacy for her work in musculoskeletal modeling of yoga to treat chronic disease: "Yoga for All"!

March - Kelley is awarded the NSF graduate fellowship. Awesome job, Kelley! This award funds her tuition and stipend for three years, so Kelley can continue her work in microscale modeling!

February - The M3 lab welcomes Aaron Xiyao Hu! Aaron was born February 23, 2015 and is ready to learn all about muscle mechanics from his dad and fellow M3 lab members!

February - Xiao publishes his paper, "Musculoskeletal simulation can help explain selective muscle degeneration in duchenne muscular dystrophy" in Muscle & Nerve. Congratulations, Xiao on an exciting February!

January - Kelley publishes her paper, "Multi-scale models of skeletal muscle reveal the complex effects of muscular dystrophy on tissue mechanics and damage susceptibility" in Interface Focus. Good job, Kelley!


December - Geoff successfully defends his dissertation, entitled "MRI and Computational Modeling of In Vivo Muscle-Tendon Architecture and Function". Congratulations, Dr. Handsfield! Geoff Handsfield also officially graduated with his PhD in Biomedical Engineering and is joining Springbok, Inc. as a postdoctoral researcher!

November - The M3 lab is visited by Zebra Medical Technologies to complete set-up and testing of the zebrascope, a new microscope that can image human sarcomeres in vivo! Kyle and Katie P. test out this new technology by imaging Silvia's tibialis anterior sarcomeres!

September - Nic publishes his paper, "Musculotendon variability influences tissue strains experienced by the biceps femoris long head muscle during high-speed running" in Journal of Biomechanics. Congratulations, Nic!

August - The M3 Lab welcomes its newest graduate student: Katie Read Knaus! Katie had been working as an M3 Lab research assistant.

July - Kyle wins the American Society of Biomechanics President's Poster Award at World Congress of Biomechanics! Awesome, Kyle!

May - Josh wins a Best Poster Presenter award at the 2014 UVA Postdoctoral Research Day. Nice, Josh!

May - Lucas Thomeer graduates with a B.S. in Mechanical Engineering. Congrats! Lucas is going to work as a post-bac at the National Institutes of Health under Dr. Frances Gavelli.

April - Lucas wins 1st place for his excellent presentation in the SEAS Undergraduate Research and Design Competition. Great job, Lucas!

April - Katie P. is awarded the NSF graduate fellowship. Congratulations, Katie! This award will fund her tuition and stipend for three years to continue work in imaging and modeling of skeletal muscle.

March - Geoff wins first place in the Huskey Research Exhibition. Kelley wins a big data fellowship entitled: Developing Students for Leadership in Data-Intensive Research and Innovation. Way to go, Geoff and Kelley!!


December - Geoff publishes his paper, "Relationships of 35 Lower Limb Muscles to Height and Body Mass Quantified Using MRI." Journal of Biomechanics. Congratulations Geoff!

August - The M3 Lab welcomes its newest graduate students: John Miller and Kelley Mitchell Virgilio! John comes to us after finishing his BS at NC State, and Kelley is returning to UVA after working in San Francisco for 4 years.

June - Kyle's work on ray biomechanics is featured on the cover of The Spectra: The Virginia Undergraduate Engineering and Science Research Journal, a publication of U.Va. School of Engineering and Applied Science. Congrats, Kyle!

May - Geoff gives the best student presentation at GCMAS for his talk "Muscle Weakness is not Evenly Distributed Across the Lower Limb in Children with Cerebral Palsy". He receives the Dr. Kevin P. Granata Student Award and corresponding travel grant. Awesome job, Geoff!

May - Nic Fiorentino and Scott Russo officially graduate with their PhDs in Mechanical Engineering! Nic is joining Andy Anderson's group at the University of Utah, as postdoctoral researcher, and Scott continues his engineering work in industry.

April - Nic successfully defends his dissertation, "Insights into Acute Muscle Strain Injury Obtained With In Vivo Imaging and Finite Element Modeling". Great job, Dr. Fiorentino!

April - Nic publishes his work "Rectus Femoris Knee Muscle Moment Arms Measured in Vivo During Dynamic Motion With Real-Time Magnetic Resonance Imaging" in the ASME Journal of Biomechanical Engineering. Great work, Nic!


December - Shawn publishes his work "Computer models offer new insights into the mechanics of rock climbing" in the Journal of Sports Technology. Great job, Shawn!

November - Silvia and the cleft palate team are featured in the Fall 2012 issue of UVa Engineering UNBOUND in an article titled "When Work Hits Home"!

October - Geoff wins the best oral presentation award at the BMES symposium. Congrats, Geoff!

October - The move to MR5 is complete!

September - Professor Blemker's primary appointment is now in Biomedical Engineering. The lab will be moving from MEC to MR5 soon!

August - The M3 lab and the Peirce-Cottler lab are jointly awarded an NSF grant titled "A Computational Framework for Predicting Skeletal Muscle Adaptation Following Surgical Procedures"!

August - The M3 lab welcomes its newest graduate student: Katie Pelland!

June - The M3 lab welcomes its newest postdoc: Josh Inouye!

May - The M3 lab welcomes Sadie Anne Russo! Born May 17, 2012, Sadie is sure to grow up to be a strong swimmer just like the rays her dad is designing!

May - Geoff Handsfield and Natalie Powers are awarded a Double-'Hoo grant to investigate the long-term effects of switching from shod to minimalist running. That's great teamwork!

April - Professor Blemker receives a Hartwell Grant to improve the outcomes of cleft palate repair surgery using advanced biomedical imaging and finite element modeling. Way to go, Silvia!

March - Nic Fiorentino takes home 4th place at the University of Virginia Engineering Research Symposium (UVERS). Good work, Nic!


August - The M3 lab is featured in UVa Today!

June - M3 lab members Bahar Sharafi and Nic Fiorentino win 1st and 2nd prize for the New Investigator Award at The Technical Group on Computer Simulation in Leuven, Belgium. Congrats Bahar and Nic!

March - Bahar Sharafi successfully defends her Ph.D dissertation titled, "Micromechanical modeling of skeletal muscle: insights into structure and function at the fiber and fascicle levels." Congratulations Dr. Sharafi!


September - Mike Rehorn published his work titled, "The effects of aponeurosis geometry on strain injury susceptibility explored with a 3D muscle model," in the Journal of Biomechanics.

August - M3 lab members Bahar Sharafi, Nic Fiorentino, Geoff Handsfield, Mike Rehorn, Shawn Russell, and Chris Zirker give excellent presentations at the American Soceity of Biomechanics Meeting in Providence, RI. Bahar is nominated for and wins the Journal of Biomechanics Award with her work on microscale modeling of muscle. Nice work Bahar!

August - M3 celebrates a successful summer semester with Research Experience for Teachers participants Carrie Lewis, Kelly Scott, and Diana Webber.

July - The M3 lab welcomes its youngest member to the group! Daniel Benjamin Blemker was born on July 21, 2010, and is already enjoying learning all about muscle mechanics from the M3lab and his older brother Jack.

June - The M3 lab welcomes newborn Dylan Thomas Russell to the group! Baby Dylan was born June 22, 2010, and will undoubtedly grow up to be a proud Cavalier just like his dad!

May - Rafat Mehdi and Kathryn Ridder graduate with a B.S. in Mechanical Engineering. Congrats! Rafat continues his engineering education at Stanford University while Kathryn puts her engineering skills to work at a local engineering firm.

May - Kathryn Ridder takes 2nd place at the Undergraduate Research and Design Symposium! Kathryn presented her work on designing and constructing a deformable gel phantom for validating MRI strain measurements.

April - Mike Rehorn successfully defends his masters and is set to continue his success in medical school at Northwestern University. Congratulations Master Mike!

January - M3 lab welcomes graduate student Scott Russo to the group. M3 lab welcomes post-doc Shawn Russell to the group.


September - Professor Blemker co-organizes a fantastic Workshop on Multi-Scale Muscle Mechanics at the Marine Biological Laboratory in Woods Hole, MA. Workshop attendees from around the world present and discuss exciting biomechanics research at all length scales from proteins to muscle-tendon units. Lab members Nic Fiorentino and Mike Rehorn present a poster comparing computational and experimental findings of hamstring mechanics, and Bahar Sharafi is nominated for the Young Investigators Award for her work on tapering of muscle fibers and propensity for injury.

August - Mike Rehorn delivers a great talk on aponeurosis morphology and injury susceptibility at the American Society of Biomechanics meeting at Penn State University, PA.

August - M3 lab welcomes undergraduate students Rafat Mehdi and Kathryn Ridder to the group.

July - M3 lab welcomes graduate student Geoff Handsfield to the group.

January - M3 lab welcomes graduate student Chris Zirker to the group.


August - M3 lab members Bahar Sharafi and Nic Fiorentino give excellent talks at the North American Congress of Biomechanics in Ann Arbor, MI. Bahar gave a podium presentation on her work related to micromechanical modeling of skeletal muscle and Nic gave a podium presentation on his work on characterizing muscle moment arms from real-time MRI.


December - The M3 lab welcomes Jack Raul Blemker! Born December 25, 2007, Jack is already enjoying learning all about muscle mechanics from the M3lab!

September - M3 lab is awarded an NIH R01 grant titled "Biocomputation of the links between muscle morphology, coordination, and injury." This is a collaborative grant with the Darryl Thelen and the Neuromuscular Biomechanics Lab at the University of Wisconsin.

August - M3 lab welcomes graduate student Sarah Honaker to the group.

June - Multi-scale Muscle Mechanics Lab ("M3 Lab") launches new web site, featuring a list of current lab members, descriptions of our research, and a list of publications.

June - Mike Rehorn graduates! Congratulations to Mike, and we are excited that he will be staying at UVa for graduate studies in Biomedical Engineering.

April - Nic Fiorentino wins NSF fellowship! Congratulations to Nic. This award will fund his tuition and stipend for three years to continue his work in imaging and modeling of skeletal muscle.


August - M3 lab welcomes graduate student Nic Fiorentino to the group.

June - M3 lab welcomes graduate student Bahar Sharafi to the group.