Dr Mark Thompson is Associate Professor at the Institute of Biomedical Engineering, Department of Engineering Science University of Oxford and a Tutorial Fellow in Engineering at Wadham College. He obtained his PhD in 2001 from the University of London, and from 2001 – 2006 was successively an EC Marie Curie Fellow at Lund University, Sweden and the AO Wyss Fellow in Mechanobiology at Charité, the medical faculty for Humboldt and Free Universities in Berlin, Germany. He established the Oxford Mechanobiology Group in 2006, applying solid mechanics modelling and in situ experimental techniques to the study of living materials to enable faster, more effective diagnosis, treatment and monitoring of connective tissue disease.
Recent work has exploited in situ microscopy and X-ray diffraction techniques to investigate mechanical damage mechanisms in tissues including peripheral nerve, artery, bladder and tendon at whole tissue and cell level. In peripheral nerve and axons he demonstrated the mechanical contribution of collagen and myelin and identified protective mechanisms for axons undergoing large deformations. In addition to these areas of activity he has led a Wellcome Trust collaborative project on biomechanical design of an affordable prosthesis for India.