Gold University of Minnesota M. Skip to main content. University of Minnesota.
Driven to Discover.

Cardiovascular Keynotes

Tuesday, April 16, 2:00-3:30
Meridian Ballroom 2/3, Graduate Minneapolis

Organizer: Paul Iaizzo, University of Minnesota

William E. Cohn, Texas Medical Center"Total Artificial Heart"

William Cohn, Executive Director, Johnson & Johnson Center for Device Innovation, Texas Medical Center
He is also a professor of surgery at Baylor College of Medicine and an adjunct professor of Bioengineering at both Rice University and the University of Houston.

Prior to joining J&J, Dr. Cohn was the director of the Cullen Cardiovascular Research Lab at the famed Texas Heart Institute and the Director of Minimally Invasive Cardiothoracic Surgery at THI. A native of Houston, Dr. Cohn received his medical school education, general surgical training, and cardiothoracic surgical training at Baylor College of Medicine where he served as the last chief resident of the legendary heart surgeon Michael E. DeBakey. After graduation, Dr. Cohn spent eleven years on the faculty of Harvard Medical School and as an Attending Cardiothoracic Surgeon at Boston’s Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center.

His major research interests include the development of new technology for decreasing the invasiveness of surgical procedures and development of the continuous-flow totally implantable artificial heart. In 2011, Dr. Cohn and Dr. O. H. Frazier successfully implanted the first pulseless total heart replacement device in a human patient.

Dr. Cohn has a passion for medical device development and has more than 90 US patents granted or pending and another 60 international patents for his medical innovations. His numerous awards include an honorary doctorate in science from Oberlin College, the Distinguished Scientist Award, given by the MacDonald Fund, and the Edison Award for excellence in human-centered design and innovation for inventing the SentreHEART® Lariat® Suture Delivery Device. In 2000, Dr. Cohn was named the distinguished Inventor of the Year by the U.S. Intellectual Property Owners Association and in 2014, he was named Outstanding Inventor of the Year by the Houston IPO. In addition, in 2014 he received an award for the most Innovative Medical Device Startup of the year at the Innovations in Cardiovascular Interventions Conference in Tel Aviv for inventing the TVA everlinQ system for percutaneous creation of AV fistulas and for founding TVA Medical. In 2015, he was awarded a Lifetime Achievement Award for healthcare innovation by the Houston Technology Center. He is the Chief Medical Officer of BiVACOR Inc. and currently serves on the board of directors of CSI Inc., BiVACOR, and TVA Medical. Previously, he served on the boards of ArterX, PluroMed, Onyx Medical, and SentreHeart.


William E. Cohn, Texas Medical Center"Monitoring the Heart Rhythms of Free-Ranging Brown and American Black Bears – Lessons Learned and Potential Applications to Human Medicine"

Tim Laske, Vice President of Research and Business Development - AF Solutions, Medtronic
Tim is a Medtronic Bakken Fellow and Technical Fellow and a Fellow of the American Institute for Medical and Biological Engineering. His previous roles at Medtronic include VP of Product Development for AF Solutions, Senior Product Development Director for Heart Valves, Senior Program Director for Transcatheter Valves, Technology Director for Cardiac Rhythm Therapy Delivery, and technology management and design engineering positions in Tachyarrhythmia Lead Development. Prior to his tenure at Medtronic, he worked as a Design Engineer at Ford Motor Company in Detroit in Crash Safety and Advanced Vehicle Systems Engineering.

He has a B.S. degree in both Biological Sciences and Mechanical Engineering from Michigan Technological University. He received his M.S. degree in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, and his Ph.D. in Biomedical Engineering from the University of Minnesota where he serves as an Adjunct Associate Professor in the Department of Surgery. His doctoral research was centered on the use of isolated working hearts in the design of medical devices (Visible Heart®). In addition to medical device design and cardiac physiology, his research interests include the study of hibernation physiology in wild black bear and brown bear populations. He is a founding member of the BioBusiness Alliance of Minnesota, has over 60 U.S. patents, and numerous publications in the field of Biomedical Engineering and Wildlife Biology/Ecology.

Description: Bears are among the most physiologically remarkable mammals. They spend half their life in an active state and the other half in a state of dormancy, tolerating up to 6 months without food, water, and physical activity, while maintaining the ability to rouse and defend themselves when disturbed. Here we describe our experiences with the development and utilization of three generations of implantable biologgers in American black and Eurasian brown bears (Ursus americanus and Ursus arctos arctos). These devices have enabled novel investigations into the underlying mechanisms for winter survival, including the discovery of an extreme respiratory sinus arrhythmias that acts to conserve energy while providing adequate circulation to maintain alertness (i.e. “fight or flight” behaviors). Extreme variations in heart rate have also been documented, including a 33.8 second asystole and a 261 beats/minute sinus tachycardia in black bears and a 39.4 second asystole and a 240 beats/minute sinus tachycardia in brown bears. Long-term data recording has also identified annual trends in heart rates and activity in both species. Combining physiological data with concurrent GPS collar locations provided insights into the impacts of human and environmental stressors (hunting, predation by other bears, road crossings, drones), which would not have been apparent through spatial data analysis alone. More recently, short-range wireless telemetry has allowed for real-time streaming of data via telemetry stations placed in remote den locations. Future iterations include transponders for bio-monitoring and as an early warning system to aid in the prevention of poaching in free-ranging animals. This presentation will describe the primary experimental capabilities of the current and next generation systems, highlighting key findings and describing potential applications of the remarkable physiology of the bears to human medicine.


Related Sessions:

Advances in Cardiovascular Medical Devices
Cardiac Electrophysiology Perspectives
Diagnostics & Precision Medicine for Medical Devices

Registration Opens Jan 2020

Stay connected with the DMD Conference through LinkedIn Twitter Facebook YouTube