https://engineering.wustl.edu/news/Pages/Uncovering-molecular-grammar.aspx889Uncovering molecular grammar<img alt="RNA binding protein in vitro" src="/news/PublishingImages/Pappu_FUS_7.18.jpg?RenditionID=1" style="BORDER:0px solid;" /><p>​An international research collaboration including engineers from Washington University in St. Louis have discovered a protein sequence mechanism that triggers phase separation deep within a single cell.<br/></p><p>Their findings, <a href="https://www.cell.com/cell/abstract/S0092-8674(18)30731-1">published in Cell</a>, could provide insights into age-related diseases such as amyotrophic lateral sclerosis and some cancers.<br/></p><p>The team--comprised of scientists from the Max Planck Institute of Molecular Cell Biology and Genetics (MPI-CBG) in Dresden and Washington University, including Rohit Pappu, the Edwin H. Murthy Professor of Engineering at WashU's School of Engineering & Applied Science and postdoctoral students Alex Holehouse and Jeong-Mo Choi — developed a combination of experimental and theoretical analysis to uncover a protein sequence that underlies phase separation of prion-like RNA binding proteins.<br/></p><p>Their findings suggest that in the near future, scientists will have sufficient control over phase separation. It might be possible to predict and design proteins that have distinct phase-separation properties based on the protein sequences alone. By introducing these proteins into a living organism, researchers could investigate the function and pathology of the phase-separated organelles, which will provide insights into the mechanisms of related diseases. <br/></p><p>Read more about the research <a href="https://www.mpi-cbg.de/news-events/latest-news/article/news/uncovering-molecular-grammar/">here</a>.<br/></p><div class="cstm-section"><h3>Rohit Pappu<br/></h3><div style="text-align: center;"> <img src="/Profiles/PublishingImages/Pappu_Rohit_1_16_05.jpg?RenditionID=3" alt="" style="margin: 5px;"/> </div><ul style="padding-left: 20px; text-align: left;"><li>Edwin H. Murty Professor of Engineering <br/></li><li>His research interests are focused on intrinsically disordered proteins (IDPs), specifically their roles in transcriptional regulation, receptor mediated cell signaling, and cellular stress response.<br/></li></ul><p style="text-align: center;"> <a href="/Profiles/Pages/Rohit-Pappu.aspx">View Bio</a><br/></p></div>Liquid-liquid phase separation of a prion-like RNA binding protein in vitro. Photo by Jie Wang / MPI-CBG2018-07-09T05:00:00ZAn international collaboration including biomedical engineers at WashU have discovered a protein sequence mechanism that triggers phase separation deep within a single cell.<p>​Collaborative team deciphers the protein sequence-encoded mechanism that drives phase separation<br/></p>
https://engineering.wustl.edu/news/Pages/Engineering-faculty-awarded-$20,000-for-collaborative-research.aspx877Engineering faculty awarded $20,000 for collaborative research<p>​ShiNung Ching, Nate Huebsch, Ulugbek Kamilov and Rohan Mishra have all been awarded grants to promote collaborative research.<br/></p><img alt="" src="/news/PublishingImages/collaborative%20research%20faculty.jpg?RenditionID=12" style="BORDER:0px solid;" /><div id="__publishingReusableFragmentIdSection"><a href="/ReusableContent/36_.000">a</a></div><p>Four assistant professors in the School of Engineering & Applied Science have been awarded $20,000 grants from the School's Collaboration Initiation Grants program, which awards one-year grants to tenure-track faculty to promote collaborative research.</p><p>This year's awardees are ShiNung Ching, Nate Huebsch, Ulugbek Kamilov and Rohan Mishra. Each awardee receives funding from the school and must have $5,000 in cost-sharing from their department or collaborators. Ching and Kamilov each received $5,000 from the Institute of Clinical & Translational Sciences at the School of Medicine.</p><p>The grants encourage faculty to apply for larger, interdisciplinary grants, to create a more synergistic project <g class="gr_ gr_32 gr-alert gr_spell gr_inline_cards gr_disable_anim_appear ContextualSpelling ins-del" id="32" data-gr-id="32">than</g> could be achieved by one researcher in one discipline, and to demonstrate the potential to sustain the collaboration and obtain external funding.</p><p><img src="/Profiles/PublishingImages/Ching_ShiNung.jpg?RenditionID=10" class="ms-rtePosition-2" alt="" style="margin: 10px;"/>Ching, assistant professor of electrical & systems engineering, is collaborating with Rejean Guerriero, assistant professor of neurology and a pediatric neurologist at St. Louis Children's Hospital. They seek to improve signal processing and dynamical systems modeling to provide better explanations of ultraslow network activity in the brain, which they believe is behind a state of unrelenting seizures in critically ill children. They believe this state may be preceded by a novel brain activity pattern that is too slow to be captured on traditional electroencephalogram monitoring devices. Identifying the physiological mechanisms underlying this pattern would allow for intervention and potential treatment of this condition.</p><p><img src="/Profiles/PublishingImages/Huebsch_Nate.jpg?RenditionID=10" class="ms-rtePosition-1" alt="" style="margin: 10px;"/>Huebsch, assistant professor of biomedical engineering, is collaborating with Guy Genin, the Harold and Kathleen Faught Professor of Mechanical Engineering and professor of neurological surgery. They plan to develop an in vitro model of the effects of afterload on human heart cells using their expertise in human-induced pluripotent stem cell-based tissue engineering and biomaterials. With these models, they will apply forces that mimic the forces applied to heart cells when the heart has to pump blood against increased systemic resistance. They will apply this system to muscle cells in the heart that are genetically predisposed to dilated cardiomyopathy, a condition in which the heart's ability to pump blood is decreased. The investigators said that by combining physical and genetic causes of cardiomyopathy within their model, they will make more accurate disease-in-a-dish models that can ultimately be used to discover new therapies.  </p><p><img src="/Profiles/PublishingImages/Kamilov,%20Ulugbek.JPG?RenditionID=10" class="ms-rtePosition-2" alt="" style="margin: 10px;"/>Kamilov, assistant professor of computer science & engineering and of electrical & systems engineering, is collaborating with Hongyu An, associate professor in the Mallinckrodt Institute of Radiology at the School of Medicine and associate director of the Center for Clinical Imaging Research. They plan to develop a novel data-adaptive imaging framework that removes "noise" or errors in magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) caused by patient motion. The work will focus on efficient data acquisition and high-quality image reconstruction. Their goal is to create a single, holistic imaging framework that uses available data to generate error-free images from highly dynamic MRI data.</p><p><img src="/Profiles/PublishingImages/Mishra_Rohan_03.jpg?RenditionID=10" class="ms-rtePosition-1" alt="" style="margin: 10px;"/>Mishra, assistant professor of mechanical engineering & materials science, is collaborating with Vijay Ramani, the Roma B. and Raymond H. Wittcoff Professor of Energy, Environmental & Chemical Engineering. They plan to rationally design cheap and corrosion-resistant, transition-metal-based electrocatalysts that can be used in automotive fuel cells to promote the oxygen-reduction reaction. Currently, fuel cells use expensive platinum-group-metal-based catalysts. Mishra will predict potential catalysts using high-throughput, quantum-mechanical calculations and material informatics. Once discovered, Ramani will synthesize the materials and measure their catalytic activity, and then the team will characterize them for further optimization. Ultimately, they hope to find a catalyst that could meet the Department of Energy's Fuel Cell Program's 2020 targets for activity and stability.</p><p> </p><SPAN ID="__publishingReusableFragment"></SPAN><p><br/></p><p><br/></p>From left: ShiNung Ching, Nate Huebsch, Ulugbek Kamilov and Rohan MishraBeth Miller 2018-05-30T05:00:00ZFour faculty have been awarded grants to collaborate with other university researchers.
https://engineering.wustl.edu/news/Pages/Defects-in-tissue-trigger-disease-like-transformation-of-cells.aspx875Defects in tissue trigger disease-like transformation of cells<div class="youtube-wrap"><div class="iframe-container"> <iframe width="854" height="480" frameborder="0" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/a1j7EUzABs0"></iframe> <br/> <br/></div></div><p style="margin: 5px; font-size: 16px; font-style: italic; font-weight: normal;">Cells invading into the tissue-like collagen-I matrix under the defective basement membrane.</p><img alt="" src="/news/PublishingImages/ToC_schematic_v2.jpg?RenditionID=1" style="BORDER:0px solid;" /><div id="__publishingReusableFragmentIdSection"><a href="/ReusableContent/36_.000">a</a></div><p>Homeowners know that one little termite can lead to big problems: While termites are efficient at gnawing away at <g class="gr_ gr_46 gr-alert gr_gramm gr_inline_cards gr_run_anim Grammar only-ins replaceWithoutSep" id="46" data-gr-id="46">wood</g>, they can do even more damage if the wood is already broken or has another defect.</p><p>Mechanical engineers at Washington University in St. Louis have found the same effect in some of the body's tissue: One small defect in tissue boundaries known as the basement membrane can lead normal cells to take on characteristics of diseased cells, such as cancer cells, and invade the surrounding tissue.</p><p>In research published online May 16 in <em>Integrative Biology</em>, Amit Pathak, assistant professor of mechanical engineering in the School of Engineering & Applied Science, and his team found this feedback loop with epithelial cells. These simple cell colonies act as the body's defense against the outside world and also line the inside of the throat, intestines, blood vessels and organs, meaning the epithelial cells could provide a little link to a much bigger issue. Knowledge of this relationship could help researchers find new therapies to halt cancer metastasis.</p><p>Researchers already knew that in cancer, epithelial cells transition into mesenchymal types that can degrade the basement membrane, a process stimulated by enzymes called matrix metalloproteinases (MMPs). This process causes further defects in healthy tissue and allows cancer to metastasize. Pathak's team is the first to discover that the reverse also is true — preexisting defects in the basement membrane, such as a wound or small incision, <g class="gr_ gr_57 gr-alert gr_gramm gr_inline_cards gr_run_anim Grammar multiReplace" id="57" data-gr-id="57">are</g> enough to encourage the normal cells to take on disease characteristics, leading to further degradation of the basement membrane.</p><p>Pathak and his team fabricated a basement membrane model using a <g class="gr_ gr_42 gr-alert gr_spell gr_inline_cards gr_run_anim ContextualSpelling ins-del multiReplace" id="42" data-gr-id="42">hydrogel coated</g> with collagen IV, a protein that is the main and most important structural component of the basement membrane. They added normal epithelial cells, which like to stick together, then made a small cut in the gel. After six days, the cells started to break apart, move around and invade the gel, mimicking a tumor invading healthy tissue.</p><p>"Because of the defect, the cells started to show signatures of diseased cells," Pathak said. "If there was no defect, they would have stayed the same. This small defect of less than one-tenth of a millimeter caused this whole process of these cells changing."</p><p>To show that the cells would have remained the same without the defect, Pathak and his team treated them with an inhibitor of MMPs, which are known to degrade the basement membrane in wound healing. The cells did not change and did not invade the basement membrane.</p><p>Previously, researchers believed that once tumor cells <g class="gr_ gr_43 gr-alert gr_gramm gr_inline_cards gr_run_anim Grammar multiReplace" id="43" data-gr-id="43">became</g> malignant, they would degrade the basement membrane.</p><p>"This finding shows that we shouldn't take basement membrane degradation as an inevitable outcome," Pathak said. "In addition to targeting tumor cells, we can determine therapeutic strategies that make the basement membrane more stable. If it is more stable, then we can at least slow down and possibly reverse metastasis."</p><p>In addition to the hydrogel model, Pathak and his team made a computational model integrating the biochemical and biophysical effects of the defects on the cellular transitions, which allowed them to make predictions on which they will base future experiments.<br/></p><SPAN ID="__publishingReusableFragment"></SPAN><p>Walter C, Davis J, Mather J, Pathak A. "Physical defects in basement membrane-like collagen-IV matrices trigger mesenchymal transition and invasion in normal epithelial cells." <em>Integrative Biology</em>. Online May 16, 2018. <a href="http://dx.doi.org/10.1039/C8IB00034D" style="outline: 0px;">http://dx.doi.org/10.1039/C8IB00034D</a></p><p>Funding for this research was provided by the National Science Foundation and the Edward Mallinckrodt, Jr. Foundation.<br/></p><p><br/></p><p><br/></p><div class="cstm-section"><h3>Amit Pathak</h3><div> <img src="/Profiles/PublishingImages/Pathak_Amit.jpg?RenditionID=6" alt="" style="margin: 5px;"/> <ul><li>Assistant Professor of Mechanical Engineering & Materials Science <br/></li><li>His areas of expertise include biomechanics, biomaterials, mechanobiology of the cell, and interactions between cells and extracellular matrices.<br/></li></ul><p style="text-align: center;"> <a href="/Profiles/Pages/Amit-Pathak.aspx" style="background-color: #ffffff;">View Bio</a> <br/></p></div></div>Amit Pathak and his team have found that one small defect in tissue boundaries known as the basement membrane can lead normal cells to take on characteristics of diseased cells, such as cancer cells, and invade the surrounding tissue.Beth Miller 2018-05-22T05:00:00ZLike termites in a home's foundation, some normal cells in the body can take on characteristics of diseased cells and invade the surrounding tissue, causing big problems. Y
https://engineering.wustl.edu/news/Pages/Students-showcase-research-at-BME-Day-May-1.aspx874Students showcase research at BME Day May 1<p><span style="font-size: 1.25em;">Students and professors in the Department of Biomedical Engineering presented their research as part of the annual BME Day, designed to celebrate the department's impact on <g class="gr_ gr_3 gr-alert gr_gramm gr_inline_cards gr_run_anim Grammar only-ins replaceWithoutSep" id="3" data-gr-id="3">understanding</g> of living systems and the development of new technologies to diagnose and treat disease.</span></p><img alt="BME Senior Design students" src="/news/PublishingImages/180501_seas_bme_005.jpg?RenditionID=1" style="BORDER:0px solid;" /><p> Scott Hollister, the Patsy and Alan Dorris Chaired Professor of Pediatric Technology in the Wallace H. Coulter Dept. of Biomedical Engineering at Georgia Institute of Technology and Emory University, was <g class="gr_ gr_36 gr-alert gr_gramm gr_inline_cards gr_run_anim Grammar only-ins doubleReplace replaceWithoutSep" id="36" data-gr-id="36">keynote</g> speaker. In addition, graduating seniors and graduate students were recognized with a variety of awards: <br/></p><div rtenodeid="4"><strong>Senior Design</strong></div><div><ul><li><strong>First Place: </strong>Natalie Ng, Natalie Orr and Nathan Schmetter for their project titled “SmartStim: Reducing Instances of Pseudarthrosis with Targeted Electrical Stimulation.”<br/></li><li><strong>Second place: </strong>Eddie Lai, Anna Noronha, Athena Tam and Nandita Thapar for their project titled “Smart Walker.” <br/></li><li><strong>Third place: </strong>Daniel Khan, Rohan Khopkar and Abhishek Sethi for their project titled “Noninvasive Detection of Mouse Pregnancy.”<br/></li></ul></div><div rtenodeid="5"><strong>Doctoral Student Research Awards</strong></div><div><ul><li>Chelsey Dunham, <g class="gr_ gr_34 gr-alert gr_gramm gr_inline_cards gr_run_anim Punctuation multiReplace" id="34" data-gr-id="34">PhD</g> candidate in the lab of Spencer Lake, for her project titled, “Persistent Motion Loss Caused by <g class="gr_ gr_28 gr-alert gr_spell gr_inline_cards gr_run_anim ContextualSpelling ins-del multiReplace" id="28" data-gr-id="28">Arthrogenic</g> Tissues in a Rat Model of Post-Traumatic Elbow Contracture.”<br/></li><li>Tsz Wai (Terence) Wong, <g class="gr_ gr_31 gr-alert gr_gramm gr_inline_cards gr_run_anim Punctuation multiReplace" id="31" data-gr-id="31">PhD</g> candidate in the lab of Lihong Wang, for his project titled, “Developing Photoacoustic Microscopy Devices for Translation Medicine and Basic Research.”<br/></li><li>Wandi Zhu, <g class="gr_ gr_30 gr-alert gr_gramm gr_inline_cards gr_run_anim Punctuation multiReplace" id="30" data-gr-id="30">PhD</g> candidate in the lab of Jonathan Silva, for her project titled “Molecular Basis of Mexiletine Response Variability in Patients with Long QT Syndrome.”<br/></li></ul></div><div rtenodeid="7"><strong rtenodeid="9">Honorable Mention</strong></div><div><ul><li>Dov Lerman-Sinkoff, <g class="gr_ gr_32 gr-alert gr_gramm gr_inline_cards gr_run_anim Punctuation multiReplace" id="32" data-gr-id="32">PhD</g> candidate in the lab of Deanna Barch, for his project titled, “Identifying Transdiagnostic Multimodal Correlates of Psychosis Dimensions.”<br/></li></ul></div><div rtenodeid="11"><strong>Doctoral Student Service Awards</strong></div><div rtenodeid="11"><ul><li><strong>Leadership Award: </strong>The BME Doctoral Student Leadership Award is presented in recognition of a student's demonstrated leadership contributions to WashU.<br/>Zach Markow, <g class="gr_ gr_35 gr-alert gr_gramm gr_inline_cards gr_run_anim Punctuation multiReplace" id="35" data-gr-id="35">PhD</g> candidate in the lab of Joseph Culver</li><li><strong>Outreach Award: </strong>The BME Doctoral Student Outreach Award is presented to recognize a student for their outstanding service to the broader community.<br/>Julie Speer, <g class="gr_ gr_29 gr-alert gr_gramm gr_inline_cards gr_run_anim Punctuation multiReplace" id="29" data-gr-id="29">PhD</g> candidate in the lab of Lori Setton<br/></li></ul></div><p style="text-align: center;"> <a href="/news/PublishingImages/Pages/Students-showcase-research-at-BME-Day-May-1/180501_seas_bme_103.jpg?RenditionID=9" data-lightbox="bmeday"><img src="/news/PublishingImages/Pages/Students-showcase-research-at-BME-Day-May-1/180501_seas_bme_103.jpg?RenditionID=7" alt=""/><br/>View BME Day slideshow</a></p><div style="display: none;"> <a data-lightbox="bmeday" href="/news/PublishingImages/Pages/Students-showcase-research-at-BME-Day-May-1/180501_seas_bme_089.jpg?RenditionID=9"> </a> <a data-lightbox="bmeday" href="/news/PublishingImages/Pages/Students-showcase-research-at-BME-Day-May-1/180501_seas_bme_088.jpg?RenditionID=9"> </a> <a data-lightbox="bmeday" href="/news/PublishingImages/Pages/Students-showcase-research-at-BME-Day-May-1/180501_seas_bme_067.jpg?RenditionID=9"> </a> <a data-lightbox="bmeday" href="/news/PublishingImages/Pages/Students-showcase-research-at-BME-Day-May-1/180501_seas_bme_052.jpg?RenditionID=9"> </a> <a data-lightbox="bmeday" href="/news/PublishingImages/Pages/Students-showcase-research-at-BME-Day-May-1/180501_seas_bme_023.jpg?RenditionID=9"> </a> <a data-lightbox="bmeday" href="/news/PublishingImages/Pages/Students-showcase-research-at-BME-Day-May-1/180501_seas_bme_019.jpg?RenditionID=9"> </a> <a data-lightbox="bmeday" href="/news/PublishingImages/Pages/Students-showcase-research-at-BME-Day-May-1/180501_seas_bme_006.jpg?RenditionID=9"> </a> <a data-lightbox="bmeday" href="/news/PublishingImages/Pages/Students-showcase-research-at-BME-Day-May-1/180501_seas_bme_001.jpg?RenditionID=9"> </a> </div>Senior Design students showcase their work2018-05-15T05:00:00ZStudents and professors in the Department of Biomedical Engineering presented their research as part of the annual BME Day.
https://engineering.wustl.edu/news/Pages/Tackling-the-global-clean-water-crisis.aspx869Tackling the global clean water crisis<img alt="" src="/news/PublishingImages/180501_dsr_langsdorf_scholars_004.jpg?RenditionID=1" style="BORDER:0px solid;" /><p>​#4Solo<br/></p><div>That’s the hashtag that motivated Washington University in St. Louis engineering students Kailin Baechle, Zach Bluestein, Sydney Katz, Anna Noronha and Harold Zhu to keep searching for an answer to an urgent problem: how to develop a source of clean water for children like Solo, a young girl in Madagascar.</div><div><br/></div><div>“None of us had been to Madagascar; it is difficult for us to comprehend what life is like there,” said Baechle, who first read about Solo in a report from the organization WaterAid. “But her story really impacted us. Everything became ‘#4Solo.’ She put our project in perspective.”  </div><div><br/></div><div>That project was WOOTA (Water Out of Thin Air), a simple device that draws moisture from the air and re-condenses it into clean drinking water. The prototype technology they developed won the 2016 <a href="/current-students/outside-classroom/discovery-competition/Pages/default.aspx">Discovery Competition</a>, a contest for engineering entrepreneurs that was started in 2012 by Dennis Mell, professor of practice in electrical & systems engineering at the School of Engineering & Applied Science.</div><div><br/></div><div>“Many of the developing countries without reliable access to clean water have very humid climates,” said Baechle, the WOOTA team leader. “Our idea was to capture the water that already is in the air.”</div><div><br/></div><div>The five students met as high school seniors at a scholarship weekend for the School of Engineering & Applied Science. Each had been awarded a prestigious <a href="/prospective-students/undergraduate-admissions/Pages/langsdorf-scholars.aspx">Langsdorf Scholarship</a>, a unique program that connects innovative minds and fosters collaboration. They didn’t know it at the time, but within months they would become close friends and business partners.</div><div><br/></div><div>“We hit it off right away and were really invested in each other,” Noronha said. “That’s when we first talked to Professor Mell about the Discovery Competition. We decided then we should become a team. It was really exciting to me because, in high school, everything is part of an organized club or lab. But here we could have an idea and then go off on our own and make it work.”</div><div><br/></div><div>The students graduate May 18 and will each pursue challenging education or career opportunities afterward. They will leave behind their WOOTA drawings, studies and reports in the hope that a  new generation of Washington University engineers can help build on their foundation.</div><div><br/></div><div>Here, the five scholars look back at the ideas they left on the drawing board, WOOTA design mishaps and the potential for their new technology:</div><div><br/></div><div rtenodeid="12"><strong>What were some of your early ideas for the Discovery Competition?</strong></div><div><br/></div><div><strong>Baechle:</strong> Harold wanted to make waterproof socks. He also wanted to make a necklace people could wear that would page emergency vehicles. We thought he was joking because Life Alert is a pretty well-known product. Finally we had to show him the video of the old woman who says “I’ve fallen and I can’t get up.”</div><div><br/></div><div><strong>Katz: </strong>And then Zach said, “I just wish we could take electricity and hydrogen and oxygen atoms from the air and — BAM — make water.” I was like, that won’t work because that will take a lot of energy and we’re trying to do this without electricity. But, when you think about, you don’t have to make water because water already is in the air. We just needed to figure out a way to get it out.</div><div><br/></div><div rtenodeid="11"><strong>Why did you want to address this challenge?</strong></div><div><br/></div><div><strong>Zhu: </strong>One-tenth of the world’s population has no access to clean water. Behind that statistic are hundreds of thousands of human beings who are suffering. That’s why we opened our presentation about Solo, this 12-year old girl in Madagascar. Every day, she walks six miles to bring her family water. For me, personally, I would think about my 12-year old life and compare it to hers. She couldn’t go to school and learn or do any of the things I took for granted because her role is to get this basic, fundamental resource so her family can live.</div><div><br/></div><div><strong>Katz: </strong>Clean water is one of the biggest problems of global engineering, and we wanted to do something big with big potential for impact. I remember when we came for scholarship weekend, all of these teams were tackling big challenges for the Discovery Competition and it occurred to me then that I could do something big too.</div><div><br/></div><div rtenodeid="10"><strong>How did the fact that you all had very different skills in engineering benefit the project?</strong></div><div><br/></div><div><strong>Baechle:</strong> It didn’t. Honestly, when we started out as freshmen, none of us even knew that much about engineering in general. And none of us studied the two disciplines we needed most — mechanical and chemical engineering. So we had to learn on our own about water and heat transfer and thermodynamics and use some pretty unconventional techniques to test our ideas.<br/></div><div><br/></div><div rtenodeid="9"><strong>Like what?</strong></div><div><br/></div><div><strong>Katz: </strong>Well, many developing countries without clean water have a lot of humidity. So if you want to mimic a place that has a lot of humidity like Madagascar, where can you go? The shower in your bathroom. We turned up the shower in our dorm room as hot as it would go in an attempt to saturate silica gel. Interesting side note: We found out that if silica gel gets too wet, it explodes. It will start popping like fireworks.</div><div><br/></div><div rtenodeid="7"><strong>Were there mistakes along the way?</strong></div><div><br/></div><div><strong>Baechle: </strong>Too many to count. We melted the prototype twice because the glue was not rated for the heat capacity we needed.</div><div><br/></div><div><strong>Bluestein: </strong>And then there was the time that Anna and I were carrying a prototype off the Circulator bus and it broke in half. I just started laughing, because what else can you do when things go very badly?</div><div><br/></div><div><strong>Noronha: </strong>I think a really low moment was the semifinal of the Discovery Competition. We came in last, by a lot. We weren’t prepared to answer a lot of the questions thrown our way. We had no idea how to navigate this world of nonprofits or handle distribution challenges.</div><div><br/></div><div><strong>What made you keep pushing?</strong><br/></div><div><br rtenodeid="5"/></div><div><strong>Bluestein:</strong> We were committed to each other and felt supported by our Langsdorf advisers like Kim Shilling (assistant dean of engineering). But in the end, we had developed the confidence to tackle new problems, to go out into the unknown. In class, the questions are often well-defined, but that’s not always the case in the real world. WOOTA prepared us for that in a way no class ever could.<br/><br/></div><p>​</p><div><div class="cstm-section"><h3>Engineering's fab five<br/></h3><div><strong></strong></div><div><div rtenodeid="3"><strong>Kailin Baechle</strong></div><div><strong>Degree: </strong>Bachelor’s degree in biomedical engineering with a minor in material science <br/></div><div><strong>Hometown: </strong>Montgomery, Tex.</div><div><strong>Next stop: </strong>Baechle will attend dental school at the University of Pennsylvania and plans to open her own dental practice.</div><div><br/></div><div rtenodeid="5"><strong>Zachary Bluestein</strong></div><div><strong>Degree:</strong> Bachelor’s degrees in systems engineering and computer science <br/></div><div><strong>Hometown: </strong>Wausau, Wis.</div><div><strong>Next stop: </strong>Bluestein will attend Georgia Tech, where he will study aerospace engineering.</div><div><br/></div><div rtenodeid="6"><strong>Sydney Katz</strong></div><div><strong>Degree: </strong>Bachelor’s degrees in electrical engineering and systems engineering <br/></div><div><strong>Hometown: </strong>Akron, Ohio</div><div><strong>Next stop: </strong>Katz will attend Stanford University, where she will study aerospace engineering.</div><div><br/></div><div rtenodeid="7"><strong>Anna Noronha</strong></div><div><strong>Degree: </strong>Bachelor’s degree in biomedical engineering <br/></div><div><strong>Hometown: </strong>Lake Forest, Ill.</div><div><strong>Next step: </strong>Noronha will work in health systems research in Boston before applying to medical school.</div><div><br/></div><div rtenodeid="8"><strong>Harold Zhu</strong></div><div><strong>Degree: </strong>Bachelor’s degree in systems engineering and economics and strategy with a minor in computer science <br/></div><div><strong>Hometown: </strong>Cleveland, Ohio</div><div>Next step: Zhu will work as a consultant at Oliver Wyman, a leading global management consulting firm in Boston.<br/></div></div></div><span aria-hidden="true"></span></div><p><br/></p>Engineering students (from left) Zachary Bluestein, Anna Noronha, Harold Zhu, Sydney Katz and Kailin BaechleDiane Toroian Keaggyhttps://source.wustl.edu/2018/05/tackling-the-global-clean-water-crisis/2018-05-14T05:00:00ZHow five Langsdorf Scholars kept searching for an answer to an urgent global problem: clean water for children. Their project, WOOTA, draws moisture from the air and re-condenses it into drinking water. <p>​Class Acts-Global: Meet the team of engineering students who developed a prototype to harness drinking water from moisture in the air<br/></p>