Clarkson University President Tony Collins has announced that Arthur Michalek has been granted tenure and promoted from assistant professor to associate professor of mechanical and aeronautical engineering in the Wallace H. Coulter School of Engineering.
Professor Michalek's research focuses on biomechanics of low back pain, with a particular focus on injury and repair of the intervertebral disc. This soft connective tissue structure is responsible for the dual roles of maintaining stability and connectivity of the spinal column while also allowing it to bend. The disc is composed of a complex, hierarchical fiber reinforced composite, which is extremely strong but slow to heal from injuries.
Current areas of investigation include growth and development of fibrous tissue structures, the mechanical consequences of tissue damage at a broad range of size scales, and evaluation of clinical therapeutic procedures with an eye towards minimizing invasiveness. This is accomplished through integration of mechanical testing, advanced digital imaging and analysis, and analytical modeling.
He received his bachelor of science and master of science degrees in mechanical engineering from Clarkson and his Ph.D. in mechanical engineering from the University of Vermont.
Before coming to Clarkson, Michalek was a post-doctoral research fellow in the Department of Molecular Physiology & Biophysics at the University of Vermont, where he worked to develop experimental techniques to relate post-translational modifications to changes in conformational and mechanical properties of single molecules. Prior to that, he was a post-doctoral research associate at UVM's School of Engineering.