Student Spotlight

Computational Physiology and Clinical Inference Group (CPCI): Ehi Nosakhare

studentspotlight_ehi_nosakhare

Hometown, Country:
Benin City, Nigeria

Academic history prior to coming to MIT:
B.Sc. in Electrical Engineering, Howard University; S.M. in Electrical Engineering and Computer Science, MIT

What brought you to MIT?
I attended CONVERGE (MIT’s graduate preview weekend) as a junior in 2009, and I became interested in the research carried out on campus. I applied for the MIT summer research program (MSRP) the following summer, and was accepted to work with Prof. Joel Dawson on his RF transmitter design project. The work and the lab environment were really interesting. This summer experience made me really want to come to MIT for my graduate degree.

What problem are you trying to solve with your current research and what are some possible applications?
My current research area is in the field of mathematical modeling of physiological systems (primarily cardiovascular) and biomedical signal processing. The electrical activity of the heart is recorded non-invasively with the electrocardiogram (EKG). We use data from the electrocardiogram to understand and quantify how the brain, through the autonomic nervous system (ANS), contributes to the regulation of the electrical activity of the heart.  An application of my research would be the possibility of detecting anomalies and/or injuries in the ANS control center of the brain by processing data from the EKG, which is readily available in hospital and ambulatory care settings.

What interests you most about your research?
It is really exciting to see how math and engineering concepts are being used to model the physiological systems in the human body. I am very excited about the possibility of developing algorithms and models that can contribute to the care of patients in hospitals.

What are your future plans?
I would like to work on the development of quality and low cost healthcare technologies that can be easily used in low resource environments, especially in developing countries like Nigeria and other African countries. I look forward to being able to influence how healthcare technology is utilized in those parts of the world.