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Figure 1
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Figure 2
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Team 11

Team Members

Faculty Advisor

Aiden Riley
Haya Jarad
Gabriela Tirado-Mansilla

Dr. Feng


UConn School of Engineering

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Chronic pain is a debilitating condition that often relies on prescribing powerful opioids for treatment. These pain signals travel through a group of sensory nerves in the Dorsal Root Ganglion (DRG) located adjacent to the spinal cord. While electrical stimulation of the spinal cord has been proposed as an alternative treatment for chronic pain, the DRG is a recent and more promising target for chronic pain management since it can reach a wider range and is more effective in decreasing pain. Our project was an investigation of these sensory nerves responsible for the transmission of pain signals in the DRG, with the goal of improving current approaches to DRG stimulation. Our group took three different approaches towards this goal that included optical clearing and confocal imaging of harvest murine DRG, 3D modeling of DRG-housing vertebral sections for finite element analysis, and computational modeling of the sensory nerves’ response to stimulation. The combination of these three processes will eventually allow for the construction of a morphologically-accurate 3D computational model of these nerves that can be used to investigate novel approaches for pain management.