Skip navigation

Center for Orthopaedic Biomechanics



Ali Azadani, Assistant Professor
Dr. Azadani's research interest encompasses cardiovascular mechanics, heart valve engineering, and biomechanics of trauma.  He is the director of the Cardiac Biomechanics Laboratory at the University of Denver.  The laboratory is focused on applied and translational research in cardiovascular diseases to develop new therapeutic and diagnostic devices.

Bradley Davidson
Bradley Davidson, Assistant Professor
Dr. Davidson received a BS degree in Civil Engineering from Tennessee Tech, an MS in Engineering Mechanics from Virginia Tech, and a PhD in Biomedical Engineering from the Virginia Tech-Wake Forest School of Biomedical Engineering. He was a postdoctoral fellow in Orthopaedics at the University of Colorado. His research area is in dynamics of human movement with an emphasis in neuromuscular control, rehabilitation, and experimental biomechanics.

Peter Laz
Peter Laz, Professor
Dr. Laz received a BS in Mechanical Engineering from Duke University, and MS and PhD degrees in Mechanical Engineering from Purdue University. He was a Fulbright scholar in Germany and also worked at the Southwest Research Institute. His research is in the area of probabilistic mechanics with applications to orthopaedic implants, materials and reliability-based design.

Corrine Lengefeld
Corinne Lengsfeld, Professor
Dr. Lengsfeld received BS, MS and PhD degrees in Mechanical Engineering from the University of California Irvine. She was a Post-Doc at the University of Colorado and joined the DU faculty in 1999. She specializes in interdisciplinary research in meso and micro-scale fluid systems. Her research areas include biopharmaceutical delivery and processing, inhaled aerosol and deposition, optimization of complex fluid systems, and recently fluid-solid modeling to incorporate structural influences in the optimization of fluid systems.

Paul Rulkoetter
Paul Rullkoetter, Professor
Dr. Rullkoetter received a BS in Mechanical Engineering from Duke University, and MS and PhD degrees in Mechanical Engineering from Purdue University. He has worked in the orthopedics industry at Johnson & Johnson Professional before joining the faculty at DU in 1998. His research focuses on the development of computational models to evaluate the performance of joint replacement implants.

Clinical Partners / Adjunct Faculty

Dr. Christopher Cain, MD
Orthopaedic Surgeon, University of Colorado
Specialization: Spine and total disc replacement

Dr. Douglas Dennis, MD
Orthopaedic Surgeon, Colorado Joint Replacement
Specialization: Knee and hip replacement

Dr. Derek Johnson, MD
Orthopaedic Surgeon, Denver-Vail Orthopedics
Specialization: Knee and hip replacement

Dr. Raymond Kim, MD
Orthopaedic Surgeon, Colorado Joint Replacement
Specialization: Knee and hip replacement

Dr. Tom Noonan, MD
Orthopaedic Surgeon, Steadman-Hawkins Denver
Specialization: Sports medicine

Dr. Woosik Chung, MD
Orthopaedic Surgeon, Colorado Comprehensive Spine Institute
Specialization: Spine


Kevin Shelburne
Kevin Shelburne, Senior Research Scientist
Dr. Shelburne received his BS and MS degrees in Mechanical Engineering from Texas A&M University, and his Ph.D. from the University of Texas. Kevin came to biomechanics through work in the aerospace industry. In 2000, he joined the Biomechanics Research Laboratory at the Steadman-Philippon Research Institute as Assistant Director. In 2010, he began work as a Senior Research Scientist in the Mechanical and Materials Engineering Department at the University of Denver. Kevin's hobbies include cycling, motorcycling, mountaineering, skiing, and fly fishing.

Clare Fitzpatrick
Clare Fitzpatrick, Research Engineer (former Post-Doctoral Fellow)
Dr. Fitzpatrick completed her PhD at University College Dublin, Ireland in 2008. She moved to Denver in 2009 to work in the Computational Biomechanics Lab as a post-doctoral research fellow. She is currently a research engineer and an avid snowboarder and mountain biker.

Michael Harris
Michael Harris, Post-Doctoral Fellow
Dr. Harris received his PhD in Biomedical Engineering from the University of Utah in 2013.  He joined the Computational Biomechanics Laboratory at DU as a postdoctoral researcher in April 2013.  Dr. Harris' background is in 3D subject-specific finite element and musculoskeletal modeling of the hip in patients with femoroacetabular impingement and acetabular dysplasia.  He also has experience in radiographic imaging and statistical shape modeling.  At DU, he will participate in the development and application of finite element models of the natural human knee as well as in vivo dynamic motion studies of healthy and injured knees.  Outside work, he enjoys getting outside with his wife and three children.

Adam Cyr
Adam Cyr, Post-Doctoral Fellow
Dr. Cyr received a B.S. in Mechanical Engineering at the University of Portland, and a Ph.D. in BioEngineering from the University of Kansas where he focused on knee mechanics and ligament constraint. Dr. Cyr joined the University of Denver in 2013 as a post-doctoral fellow and works with the high speed stereo radiography system. Adam enjoys triathlon training, hiking, skiing, and snowboarding.

Mike Decker
Michael Decker, Senior Research Consultant
Dr. Decker studied Biomechanics at the Oregon State University, University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee and the University of Texas. He worked as a Senior Scientist in the Biomechanics Research Laboratory at the Steadman Philippon Research Institute for 7 years and as a Post-Doctoral researcher for 2 years. Mike has also taught biomechanics and integrative physiology courses at the University of Colorado-Boulder. In 2011, he began work as a Senior Research Scientist in the Human Dynamics Laboratory at the University of Denver and currently serves as a Senior Research Consultant. His research interests are focused on rehabilitation science and his hobbies include camping, skiing, and recreational sports.

Current Students

PhD Students

Tariq Abo-Alhol 
Hometown: Tripoli, Libya
Degrees: BSc Mechanical Engineering from Tripoli University, MSc Engineering Systems from Universiti Putra
Research Project: Mechanics of the knee during kneeling (Advisor: Laz)
Hobbies: soccer, listening to music, hanging out with his family and friends

Azhar Ali 
Hometown: Austin, Texas
Degrees: BS Mechanical Engineering and MS Mechanical Engineering from DU
Research Project: Finite element modeling of the structures of the knee (Advisor: Laz/Shelburne)
Hobbies: sports, cooking, hiking, camping

Brecca Gaffney 
Hometown: Greeley, Colorado
Degrees: BS Mechanical Engineering from Colorado School of Mines, MS Mechanical Engineering from DU
Research Project: High density surface electromyography for biofeedback (Advisor: Davidson)
Hobbies: Snowboarding, basketball, hiking, reading

Casey Myers
Hometown: Penryn, California
Degrees: BS Kinesiology from CU Boulder, MS Biomechanics from UC Davis
Research Project: Musculoskeletal modeling of the lumbar spine (Advisor: Davidson)
Hobbies: running, biking, snowboarding, nordic skiing, fishing, reading

Craig Simons 
Hometown: Grand Junction, Colorado
Degrees: BS Engineering Physics from University of Colorado, MS Mechanical Engineering from DU
Research Project: Experimental techniques for lumbar kinematic measurement (Advisor: Davidson)
Hobbies: Biking, nordic skiing, home improvement

Lowell Smoger 
Hometown: Philadelphia, PA
Degrees: BS Mechanical Engineering, MS Mechanical Engineering from Rochester Institute of Technology (RIT)
Research Project: Musculoskeletal modeling (Advisor: Laz)
Hobbies: biking, hiking, snowboarding, tennis and traveling

MS Students

Stuart Currie 
Hometown: Markham, Ontario, Canada
Degrees: BS Biology from University of Western Ontario, Doctor of Chiropractic from University of Health Sciences
Research Project: Biomechanics and muscle activation of spinal manipulative therapy (Advisor: Davidson)
Hobbies: hockey, hiking, running, and biking in the Colorado outdoors

James Deacy 
Hometown: Kansas City, Missouri
Degrees: BS Mechanical Engineering from DU
Research Project: Finite element modeling of the implanted knee (Advisor: Rullkoetter)
Hobbies: skiing, hiking, biking

Justin Hollenbeck 
Hometown: Breckenridge, Colorado
Research Project: Evaluation of spine mechanics with total disc replacement (Advisor: Rullkoetter/Laz)
Hobbies: skiing, telemarking, snowbiking, biking

Andrea Wanamaker 
Hometown: Columbus, Ohio
Degrees: BS Mathematics from University of Denver
Research Project: Effects of ankle foot orthoses on unloading and gait (Advisor: Davidson)
Hobbies: Skiing, cooking, reading, sports

Undergraduate Students

Patrick Davenport 
Hometown: Grand Junction, Colorado
Research Project: Developing loading profiles of the knee (Advisor: Rullkoetter/Fitzpatrick)
Hobbies: skiing, hiking, biking, camping

Laura Hendrickson
Hometown: Los Gatos, CA
Research Project: Developing models of the knee and surrounding ligaments (Advisor: Laz)
Hobbies: hiking, snowboarding, camping

Peter Stuart 
Hometown: Cumberland, ME
Research Project: Weight-bearing biofeedback in patients with total knee arthroplasty (Advisor: Davidson)
Hobbies: Sailing, wind surfing, lacrosse, hockey, Crossfit

Katy Van Lieshout 
Hometown: Boulder, CO
Research Project: Use of plyometric movements for injury rehabilitation and prevention (Advisor: Davidson)
Hobbies: Soccer, photography, skiing/snowboarding, biking, hiking

Former Students/Post Doctoral Fellows

Milind Rao, PhD, currently at BD
Chadd Clary, Post-Doc, currently at DePuy
Chandreshwar Rao, MS, currently at Onward Technologies/BorgWarner
Joe Langenderfer, Post-Doc, currently faculty at Central Michigan University
Mark Baldwin, PhD, currently at Lockheed Martin
Saikat Pal, PhD, currently faculty at Cal Poly
Jason Halloran, PhD, currently faculty at Cleveland State
Sean Smith, MS, currently at Steadman-Phillipon Research Institute
Tim Helton, MS, currently at Corvid Technologies
William Grell, MS, currently at Lockheed Martin
Geoff Niggeler, MS, currently at Lockheed Martin