Anybody in academia?

edited January 2016 in Community
Hey everyone! I'm new to the forum, and I was wondering if there was anybody out there in academia or industry involved in biohacking. I'm currently a master's student in biology, and I'm really hoping to pursue a PhD in biomedical engineering. I think the whole idea of transhumanism is fascinating and I would love to make a career out of it somehow. The applications of this kind of tech in healthcare could be limitless. Does anybody have any advice on how to get involved? Are implants frowned upon by most people in medicine? Still mulling over the idea of getting a magnet myself. Sadly my current research work is with high magnetic fields, so it is out of the question until I'm out of my lab :/ Thanks guys!


  • edited January 2016
    Good to meet you! I'm currently an undergrad in electrical engineering, been in my current lab for a year now, and plan on pursuing a PhD. I wouldn't say the applications of biohacking are limitless to healthcare; I would say the advances made in healthcare open limitless possibilities for biohacking. Biohackers are leeches, not creators of information. I would just say get yourself into some type of BME-based lab, i.e. apply for a BME PhD after you finish your masters.

    Yes, non-medical implants are frowned on by almost everyone in medicine. I just don't tell many people.
  • edited January 2016
    That said, "frowned upon" among doctors usually means "I don't like what you're doing and it should be banned, but here's how you should do this as safe as possible". Eg: boxing. It's only when they think there's no "as safe as possible" then they go for "this is seriously not good and you shouldn't do it." Eg: smoking.
  • edited January 2016
    I'm also an undergrad in EE @bciuser. While I considered a minor in biotech , I decided against it because of how behind I would be in biology courses; however I am taking biotech electives available to double E students. My school has a synthetic biology club which does relate to biohacking. I think as a masters student it may be more difficult to become involved in student led organizations, but still feasible. Check your school's student org site for any clubs related to biohacking?
  • Sadly my school doesn't have any organizations. I'm starting to kick myself for not doing an engineering undergrad. At the time chemistry seemed like the way to go because I wanted to be a pharmacist. I'm glad to see other people out there in college though. I'm hoping I can get into a school in a big city for my PhD. There would be a higher chance to encounter like minded people I imagine. Once my research would allow it I definitely want to get a small magnet. Now the hard part of being accepted somewhere
  • @Jthomas99 , I honestly chose Engineering for the starting salary. Later on I took interest in biohacking, albeit a passive interest. What school are you taking your Master's at?
  • I am at Kent State right now in Ohio. I'm hoping to do my PhD somewhere on the east coast so that I'll be immersed in the recent biotech boom (NYC, Pittsburgh, etc..) If I hit the educational lottery I'd like to get my PhD in engineering for that sweet salary, but also more career options I think. What is your experience in engineering so far @dirksavage88?
  • @Jthomas99, so far it's challenging but do-able. I'm in the middle of electrical networks courses which by far are the most important for an EE major. Lot's of Laplace transforms and differential equations. There's also a bit of materials science and chem with semiconductors. I have a ways to go though, I've only just started courses crucial to my major.
  • I really wish I had taken EE as an undergrad. I would love to get into work with bionics and prosthetics, but I just don't have the background for it. I've talked to a few professors at various schools and they want straight up MechE or EE to do that kind of work. Do you know anyone pursuing ChemE? I hear that is a good way to get into bioengineering as well (biomaterials, nano-tech, etc).
  • @jthomas99, we have a team here at UCF that did a highly publicized prosthetic outreach. You can google "limbitless solutions". I met one of their members last semester, but lost touch with him. I'll poke around again and network. Also, limbitless does seem a mechanical engineering focused team, but after talking to this guy, he explained that they had to teach themselves basic EE stuff and it was time consuming. In other words; there is a demand for both EE and ME in prosthetics applications. I'll ask about chemE though, however I can definitely see where that has applications in prosthetics...
  • That group looks like it is doing great work! It always warms my heart to see people using science to help others (cheesy :P) I'm hoping that ChemE type work is desirable in the field. Or maybe it will be in the future as the technology progresses. I'm mostly interested in how bionics interact/connect with people's bodies. I'm come across a few academic labs doing neural engineering trying to build implantable devices that will allow patients to seamlessly control a prosthetic as if  it is directly connected to the nervous system (touch sensation etc). Do you know what kind of work you would like to get into after school @dirksavage88 ?
  • At the moment I'm looking into internships that lead to a job after I graduate. That seems the conventional way to go about it. I'm hoping something aerospace, at the cape, but realistically, anything engineering to get my foot in the door @Jthomas99
  • While I have little background in the biology field, I have a Bachelors in Network Security and currently working full time as a Security Engineer. Still in the beginning stages now, however I am working towards forensics and reverse engineering. 

    I can only imagine the more advanced the implants become the greater need there will be to have them secure from unauthorized humans. Considering this really isn't a major field to be in yet, I am working towards being ready when the opportunity strikes.
  • I am currently working on my MD degree right now. Have an MS in medical genetics and BS in genetics. 

    I know medical doctors don't have the best reputation in the biohack world but honestly my implants were a hot topic during my med school interviews and are what I attribute to my acceptance. Several of my classmates are thinking about getting their own implants after hearing about the idea so, if nothing else, at least the younger generation of doctors will be more open to whole self modification world. 

  • I'd imagine there's really a lack of knowledge about them as well, given how little even those of us who have them really know at this point. I keep thinking that doing some outreach might be a good plan.
  • Currently working through undergrad, microbio major. Honestly, I'm not 100% sure what I want to do later on in life or what I have to do to get there, but I love science and Bio (Chem to a lesser degree, but we still cool). Probably gonna work in a lab for a while, and see where I go from there
  • Hi there! First post on the site. I'm actually applying to MD and DO schools this summer and I have my undergraduate in psychology, neurobiology, and pre med.  I work in the ED at the moment, and I'm planning on having the xNTi implanted in a few days. Many of the MDs and PAs I work with were initially confused by the implant, but they became pretty intrigued after talking about it for a few minutes.

    Also, @crazyivan I'm curious, how did you address/use your implants during the interview process? I've considered it before, but was not really sure if it would be a good idea.
  • What kind of implants do you guys currently have? Sorry for not posting in the thread sooner, been crazy with school stuff. I'm actually going to be starting a PhD in the fall for biomedical engineering now. Hoping I can get into work involving implantable devices so I want to learn a bunch more about the kind of implants people in the community like/use!
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