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Brain-on-chip Research Mimics Brain Function

With hundreds of billions of neurons and thousands of trillions of synaptic connections between them, the human brain is considered the most complex system on earth. This complexity makes studying the brain an almost overwhelming challenge with nearly infinite research options.

To systematize research components into elements that can be understood on their own or in conjunction with one another, Hansang Cho, assistant professor of mechanical engineering, and his research team have developed innovative brain-on-chip devices and monitoring nanotechnologies. Brain-on-chip essentially means micro-scaled platforms that mimic brain functions and allow for unobstructed observations on small, controllable devices. As a mechanical engineer, Cho has expertise in building such devices that has led to in-depth research and achieved high-impact international publication about three types of brain chips covering most of brain activities.

Cho’s research group is part of the Center for Biomedical Engineering and Science at UNC Charlotte. His work is currently funded by the Cure Alzheimer Fund and the Charlotte Research Institute. The research team includes five undergraduate students, one graduate student, two post-doctoral fellows and one visiting professor.

Wells Fargo Gift Supports Dance Project

The Wells Fargo Foundation is sponsoring a unique project led by the UNC Charlotte Department of Dance. "Tracing Modern Dance" is centered on the reconstruction of "Tracer," a lost work by modern dance choreographer Paul Taylor. This project will include the first-ever reconstruction residency by the Paul Taylor 2 Dance Company and the first local performances of the Paul Taylor Dance Company in 15 years.

"Tracing Modern Dance" is the culmination of an 18-month research project by Associate Professor of Dance Kim Jones. Renowned modern dance choreographer Paul Taylor gave Jones the unique opportunity to reconstruct a seminal early work not performed or seen in more than 50 years. "Tracer," choreographed by Taylor in 1962 with set and costumes by the artist Robert Rauschenberg, does not benefit from the existence of video or audio rehearsal or performance records. Jones will complete her scholarly reconstruction in September during a three-week residency at UNC Charlotte with the Taylor 2 Dance Company. The residency will culminate in the "re-premiere" of the reconstructed "Tracer" in a public performance on Friday, Sept. 30.

UNC Charlotte students will learn "Tracer" and continue to perform the piece in local high schools throughout the coming school year.