Research Facilities

Wisconsin Institutes for Medical Research

The Department of Orthopedics and Rehabilitation laboratory space at the University of Wisconsin, located on the fifth floor of the Wisconsin Institutes of Medical Research (WIMR), includes over 9,000 square feet of laboratory, office, and cubicle space. The ORL features laboratories fully equipped for the biomechanical testing of biological tissues and orthopedic devices, and a laboratory for biological science connected to common rooms for storage, cell culture, microscopy, histology, and other related activities. The open framework space allows for direct interface between the laboratories.

The laboratories contain standard equipment, including -20 °C and -80 °C freezers, surgical equipment, centrifuges, incubators, light microscopes, and dissecting microscopes, to name a few. Additionally, the space is equipped for synthetic bio-organic chemistry requirements and contains equipment and supplies for biomaterials development and cell and molecular biology, including cell culture and analysis of cell activity and gene expression.

The Department of Orthopedics and Rehabilitation recently purchased a new piece of equipment from federal funds (National Institutes of Health Shared Instrumentation Grant, 1S10OD023676-01). The Faxitron© Ultrafocus DXA X-ray system is capable of capturing both structural and functional imaging down to 8 microns. The fine-detailed images provide information over a diverse range of experimental models including visualization of tumors with bony metastases, elongation of bone and healing of bone fractures, and visualization of soft tissue structures (e.g., vasculature, organs) with the aid of contrast media.

UW Neuromuscular Biomechanics Laboratory

Neuromuscular biomechanical testing is conducted in the UW Neuromuscular Biomechanics Laboratory at the UW Health Research Park Clinic. This location houses Spine, Sports Medicine, and Physical Therapy Clinics, as well as the 1,500-square-foot Neuromuscular Biomechanics Laboratory. The laboratory is conveniently located for subject access with ample free parking. The NMBL is fully equipped for biomechanically analyses of whole-body human mechanics, with major pieces including:

  • Optical motion capture system
  • Wireless 16-channel surface electromyographic equipment
  • High-speed instrumented treadmill
  • Isokinetic dynamometer
  • SIMM musculoskeletal modeling software with motion module
  • SD/fast multi-body dynamic simulation software package
  • Software for data analysis
  • A variety of data acquisition systems and computational facilities, including PCs for biomechanical modeling, analysis, desktop publishing, and slide making

Badger Athletic Performance Facility

In addition to research spaces at WIMR and Research Park, our research staff oversees sports medicine-related studies involving UW athletes at the McClain Center, which contains a 90-yard practice field and is home to the Mueller Sports Medicine Center and the Badger Athletic Performance Facility. The Badger Athletic Performance Facility houses various equipment for testing and monitoring the musculoskeletal system during athletic performance, including a motion capture system, postureography platform, treadmill, research grade ultrasound, and DXA scanner. The facilities are also used to study sports concussions, nutrition, body composition, sleep, quality of life and injury-specific health outcomes for college athletes, bone health, and aerobic fitness and cardiac function.