Watson Lecture: Mory Gharib (PhD '83) on the "Engima of the Heart"

March 02, 2023

Our circulatory system's 500 million years of evolution is on full display during the nine months of human embryonic heart development. The hallmark of this evolution is a beating, complex, autonomous muscular pump that sustains life. In this lecture, Mory Gharib (PhD '83), the Hans W. Liepmann Professor of Aeronautics and Medical Engineering, explains the wave system established by the beating heart that moves through the human body, which can provide a window to the health of the cardiovascular system and early diagnoses of its devastating diseases by utilizing modern data science. [Watch the lecture]

Gharib earned a bachelor's degree in mechanical engineering from the University of Tehran in his native Iran, a master's degree in mechanical and aerospace engineering from Syracuse University, and a doctoral degree in aeronautics from Caltech. He joined the Caltech faculty in 1992 after working for two years as a research scientist at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory, which Caltech manages on behalf of NASA, and after spending seven years on the faculty at UC San Diego. Gharib's research interests cover a range of topics in conventional fluid dynamics, aeronautics, and medical engineering. In his work on health issues, Gharib combines his interests to explore physiological machines such as the human cardiovascular system and to develop medical devices such as heart valves, cardiovascular and eye health monitoring systems, and drug delivery techniques.

The Watson Lectures, which are geared toward a general audience, spotlight a selection of the pioneering research conducted by Caltech's faculty as part of the Institute's ongoing commitment to benefiting the local community through education and outreach. All Watson Lectures are free and open to the public. [Watch previous Watson Lectures]

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