You are here

Faculty Profile

Sandra Shefelbine

Jointly Appointed, Bioengineering
222 ISEC
360 Huntington Avenue
Boston, MA 02115


  • PhD (2002), Mechanical Engineering, Stanford University

Research & Scholarship Interests

Multi-scale bone biomechanics – how the structure and composition of bone influences its mechanical properties; mechano-adaptation of bone and joint – how tissue responds to mechanical signals
Affiliated With

Department Research Areas

College Research Initiatives

Honors & Awards

  • 2011 Imperial College London Rector’s Medal of Excellence in Teaching
  • 2010 Royal Academy of Engineering Exxon Mobil Teaching Award
  • 2010 Faculty of Engineering Outstanding Teaching Award
  • 2010 Department of Bioengineering student selected ‘Best Teacher’ Award
  • 2005 RCUK Academic Fellowship
  • 2002 National Science Foundation International Research Fellowship

Teaching Interests

  • Solid mechanics
  • Dynamics
  • Musculoskeletal biomechanics

Selected Publications

  • A. Pereira, S.J. Shefelbine (2013) The influence of load repetition in bone mechanotransduction using poroelastic finite element models: The impact of permeability. Biomechanics and Modeling in Mechanobiology (Epub ahead of print)
  • M. Vanleene, S. J. Shefelbine (2013) Therapeutic impact of low amplitude high frequency whole body vibrations on the osteogenesis imperfecta mouse bone. Bone53(2):507-14
  • B. Poulet, T.A.T. Westerhof, R. Hamilton, S.J. Shefelbine, A.A. Pitsillides (2013) Spontaneous osteoarthritis in Str/ort mice is unlikely due to greater vulnerability to mechanical trauma. Osteoarthritis and Cartilage 21(5):756-763.
  • N. Rodriguez, M. L. Oyen, S. J. Shefelbine (2013) Insight into differences in nanoindentation properties of bone. J Mech Behavior of Biomed Mater. 18:90-99.
  • M. Doube, S.C.W. Yen, M.M. Klosowski, A.A. Farke, J.R. Hutchinson, S.J. Shefelbine(2012) Whole-bone scaling of the avian pelvic limb. J Anatomy 221(1):21-9.
  • M. Vanleene, A. Porter, P. Guillot, A. Boyde, M. Oyen, and S. J. Shefelbine (2012) Ultra-structural defects cause low bone matrix stiffness despite high mineralization in osteogenesis imperfecta mice Bone 50(6):1317-23
  • S. Cheng, S. J. Shefelbine, and M. Buehler. (2012) Structural and mechanical differences between collagen homo- and heterotrimers: General insight and relevance for brittle bone disease Biophysical Journal 102(3): 640-8.
  • A. Carriero, E.A. Zimmerann, S.J. Shefelbine, R.O. Ritchie "A Methodology for the Investigation of Toughness and Crack Propagation in a Mouse Bone", Journal of the Mechanical Behavior of Biomedical Materials, 39, 2014, 38-47 
  • N. Rodriguez-Florez, M.L. Oyen, S.J. Shefelbine "Age Related Changes in Mouse Bone Permeability", Journal of Biomechanics, 47(5), 2014, 1110-1116 
  • A. Levchuk, P. Schneider, R. Müller, S.J. Shefelbine, et al. "Altered Lacunar and Vascular Porosity in Osteogenesis Imperfecta Mouse Bone as Revealed by Synchrotron Tomography Contributes to Bone Fragility", Bone, 61, 2014, 116-124 (cover picture) 
  • A. Carriero, L. Abela, A.A. Pitsillides, S.J. Shefelbine "Ex Vivo Determination of Bone Tissue Strains for an in Vivo Mouse Tibial Loading Model", Journal of Biomechanics, 47(10), 2014, 2490-2497 
  • A. Carriero, E.A. Zimmermann, R.O. Ritchie, S.J. Shefelbine, et al. "How Tough is Brittle Bone? Investigating Osteogenesis Imperfecta in Mouse Bone", Journal of Bone and Mineral Research, 29(6), 2014, 1392-401 (cover picture) 
  • B. Depalle, Z. Qin, S.J. Shefelbine, M.J. Buehler "Influence of Cross-link Structure, Density and Mechanical Properties in the Mesoscale Deformation Mechanisms of Collagen Fibrils", Journal of the Mechanical Behavior of Biomedical Materials, 2014 
  • M. Giorgi, A. Carriero, S.J. Shefelbine, N. C. Nowlan "Mechanobiological Simulations of Prenatal Joint Morphogenesis", Journal of Biomechanics, 47(5), 2014, 989-995 
  • S.J. Shefelbine, N. J. Horwood, M. Marenzana, P. De Coppi, et al."Potential of Human Fetal Chorionic Stem Cell for the Treatment of Osteogenesis Imperfect", Stem Cells and Development, 23(3), 2014, 262-276 
  • J. Bruse, K. Oldknow, C. Farquharson, S.J. Shefelbine, et al. "Reference Point Indentation is not Indicative of Whole Mouse Bone Measures of Stress Intensity Fracture Toughness", Bone, 69, 2014,174-179
See Google Scholar Profile for all publications »

Related News

July 27, 2017

MIE/BioE Associate Professor Sandra Shefelbine awarded $650K NSF "Mechanobiology of Joint Morphogenesis: Manipulating Salamander Limbs" grant to study joint development by examining the regenerating limbs of salamanders.

February 1, 2017

BioE Assistant Professor Ambika Bajpayee (PI) and MIE/BioE Associate Professor Sandra Shefelbine (Collaborator) awarded a $310K DOD Peer Reviewed Medical Research Program Discovery Award

August 16, 2016

Using the injury of French gymnast Samir Ait Said during the Olympics, MIE associate professor Sandra Shefelbine explains how bones can break when different loads are placed on them.