The Antaki lab focuses on the development of blood-wetted medical devices. Equally important as the devices themselves, the lab’s research focuses on the methodology by which they are designed, and used clinically. For example, the group was one of the pioneers in physiological feedback control of implanted ventricular assist devices. They also developed one of the first decision support programs for identifying heart failure patients who could potentially recover with the acute mechanical circulatory assistance. Over the past 24 years, James Antaki has contributed to the development of several heart-assist devices used clinically, including the Heartmate-II, Novacor, Ventracor, TandemHeart, and Levacor. In 1997, He directed a multidisciplinary team that produced the Streamliner heart-assist device – the world’s first magnetically levitated rotodynamic blood pump to be tested in-vivo.
The current emphasis of the Antaki Lab’s research involves five application areas:
- circulatory support systems for children
- decision-support tools for severe heart failure
- diagnostic technology for the home and point-of-care to improve patient engagement
- multi-scale modeling of thrombosis in artificial circulation
- development of medical devices for global health
A nascent, overarching project aims to accelerate medical innovation by professional networking between physicians, medical product designers, and patients. Although these interests are diverse, they share a common theme of improving healthcare though biomedical engineering.