This episode of the Physics World Weekly podcast features an interview with Michelle Oyen, who works at the intersection of materials science and women’s health. The biomechanical engineer and biophysicist tells Physics World’s Margaret Harris how a chance telephone call from a obstetrician piqued her interest in human reproduction, which is currently the main focus of her research on the development of new biomaterials.
Oyen is the inaugural director of the Center for Women’s Health Engineering at Washington University in St Louis, US. She explains why centuries of neglect of women’s health by the medical establishment makes such institutes essential to achieve health equality.
Oyen also talks about the recent medical scandal surrounding the misuse of some materials as vaginal meshes – which illustrates why it is crucial to develop medical materials that are specifically designed for women.
Also in this podcast, Physics World’s Michael Banks and Matin Durrani join me to chat about the meteoric rise of science in China, Erwin Schrödinger’s unsuccessful sojourn in Oxford and a quantum sensor that could lead to better electric vehicles.