2016 Summer Intern: Helen Sporkin


University of Virginia

Project: Sonodynamic Therapy

Helen Sporkin 300Project Goal and Overview
Kevin and I worked to develop an instrument holder using 3D printing for a sonodynamic therapy project with Dr. Xu from UVA Neurosurgery. We designed a part to help position an ultrasound imaging transducer, ultrasound therapy transducer, and three thermocouples. Our goal was to allow Dr. Xu to complete his testing of two sonosensitizers while utilizing a therapy and imaging transducer. We also hoped to stabilize the three thermocouples in order to get accurate and reproducible heating measurements.

The 3D printed part was ultimately successful, and I think Dr. Xu will have a much easier time completing experiments. 

“It was an interesting and enriching experience. I had the opportunity to learn about a cutting edge therapy from some of the top investigators in the field.” -on her experience as an intern

“Learning about the wide breadth of uses of focused ultrasound was an important learning experience. I came into the internship with some cursory knowledge of FUS as an ablative therapy, but I now see it as a much more comprehensive treatment tool.” -on the most important learning point of her internship experience

“The internship inspired me to change my research plans for graduate school to involve a rotation in a focused ultrasound project, which will potentially lead to that being my permanent project.” -on how her internship affected her career plans

Kevin worked with Helen on this project. See his profile >