Robert M. Nerem, 2018 Honorary Member

Dec 17, 2018


Robert M. Nerem, Ph.D., an institute professor emeritus in the School of Mechanical Engineering with secondary appointments in chemical and biomolecular engineering and biomedical engineering at the Georgia Institute of Technology in Atlanta, is honored for outstanding contributions to the understanding of the dynamics of blood flow in health and disease, and the development of tissue engineering and regenerative medicine; and for leadership in creating opportunities for engineers to play a vital role in advancing medicine.

With Georgia Tech since 1987, Dr. Nerem was the founding director of the Parker H. Petit Institute for Bioengineering and Bioscience (1995-2009). Throughout his career his research has focused on the cardiovascular system, with the role of physical forces in the control of vascular biology as the continuing theme. In recent years Dr. Nerem has been investigating how differences in the hemodynamic environment result in altered cellular function on different sides of an aortic valve; and researching stem cell technology, the role of the mechanical environment in the differentiation of stem cells, and cell manufacturing.

An ASME Fellow, Dr. Nerem has been active in the Society since the early 1970s. Among his leadership roles, he served as technical editor of the Journal of Biomechanical Engineering (1988-97) and chair of the ASME Board of Editors (1997-2000). He received the H.R. Lissner Medal in 1989. In 2017 the Bioengineering Division established the Robert M. Nerem Education and Mentorship Medal.

Among his extensive list of honors are numerous academy memberships, including the National Academy of Engineering and the National Academy of Medicine, several awards and three honorary doctorates.

Dr. Nerem earned his bachelor’s degree in aeronautical engineering from The University of Oklahoma in Norman in 1959. He earned his master’s degree and Ph.D. in aeronautical and astronautical engineering from The Ohio State University in Columbus in 1961 and 1964, respectively.

Video profile produced and written by Roger Torda and edited by Juan Yepes.

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