Melissa Knothe Tate, Ph.D., 2011 Life Sciences Award

Written by on August 10, 2011 in 2011, Life Sciences Award, Researcher

Melissa Knothe Tate

Melissa Knothe Tate

Professor of Biomedical Engineering
Case Western Reserve University
Cleveland, Ohio

Dr. Melissa Knothe Tate is an internationally recognized leader in the fields of orthopaedic mechanobiology as well as the development and clinical translation of novel technologies and materials.

Dr. Knothe Tate joined the nascent field of orthopaedic mechanobiology two decades ago, as a student at Stanford University, where she earned dual BS degrees in Biological Sciences and Mechanical Engineering in 1988. Thereafter, she transferred her research and academic pursuits to the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology in Zurich, Switzerland, where she earned a Dipl. Masch. Ing., 1994 in Mechanical Engineering and a Ph.D. degree (Dr. sc. techn.ETH, 1998) in Mechanical and Biomedical Engineering. In 1998, she was awarded the Georg Fischer Prize for the most outstanding dissertation at the ETH Zurich.

For several years, Dr. Knothe Tate headed the Bone Mechanobiology Research Group at the AO Research Institute in Davos, as well as the Computational Mechanobiology Research Group at the Institute of Biomedical Engineering in Zurich.

She spent the year 2000 as Visiting Professor at the Mt. Sinai School of Medicine Department of Orthopaedics. In January 2001, she joined the Departments of Biomedical Engineering and Orthopaedic Surgery at the Cleveland Clinic, where she received several awards for innovation in the R&D sector.

In July 2004, she joined the faculty of Case Western Reserve University, where she was the first Joint Professor of Mechanical & Aerospace and Biomedical Engineering. In addition to being recently elected to the College of Fellows of the American Institute for Medical and Biological Engineering (2011), Dr. Knothe Tate has received prestigious awards from the Society for Mathematics and Biology and the Wallace H. Coulter Foundation.

Through the National Science Foundation, Dr. Knothe Tate recently led a new national research initiative in the area of stem cell mechanics during prenatal development, and postnatal growth and healing. Recently, her research has expanded to the areas of cellular and biofluid mechanics as well as development and clinical translation of novel bio-inspired flow directing materials and implants.

She is currently on sabbatical, carrying out translational research in Europe on a Humboldt Foundation Fellowship for Senior Researchers.

The Christopher Columbus Fellowship Foundation is honored to have had the assistance of the following distinguished individuals serving on the 2011 Life Sciences Awards Evaluation Committee:

  • Russell A. Bantham, Esquire
    McLean, VA
  • Alan Bronstein
    Chemistry Teacher
    Central High School
    Philadelphia, PA
  • Christine Leyden
    Senior Vice President and Chief Accreditation Officer
    Washington, D.C.


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