Department of Neurosurgery
PhD. in Biomedical Engineering, Duke University, Durham, NC, 2010
M.S. in Biomedical Engineering, Duke University, Durham, NC, 2005
B.E. in Mechanical Engineering, University College Dublin, Ireland, 2001
Research and Academic Interests
Our lab studies mechanisms and treatment of traumatic brain injury. We use a unique, human, high content, in vitro model of neurotrauma to understand the effect of genotype and/or drug treatment on morbidity. We also have the capacity to test promising interventions in rat and pig models of TBI.
John D. Finan, PhD. is a biomedical engineer specializing in traumatic brain injury. Originally from Dublin, Ireland, he received his Bachelor’s degree in Mechanical Engineering from University College Dublin in 2001 and went on to work on improving helmet technology at Duke University in North Carolina. At Duke, he also studied cell biomechanics, using microscopy and image analysis to dissect the ways in which physical stresses influence the biological activity of cells. After receiving his PhD in Biomedical Engineering in 2010, he worked as a post-doctoral research scientist in the lab of Barclay Morrison at Columbia University. There, he characterized the biomechanics of brain tissue and also developed a new therapeutic strategy for managing post-traumatic brain edema in a mouse model. He currently runs a translational traumatic brain injury lab in the Department of Neurosurgery at NorthShore University HealthSystem with a broad mission to generate insights that reduce the burden of traumatic brain injury for patients and society as a whole. He has developed a unique model of neurotrauma that involves growing human neurons in a dish and stretching them. Recently, he was awarded an R21 grant by the National Institutes of Health to use this model to search for new medicines for traumatic brain injury.