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Personal profile

Biography

My research focuses on the mechanical, developmental and physiological determinants of the locomotor and masticatory systems in vertebrates from clinical, and basic science perspectives.  

I received my BA at the National and Kapodistrian University of Athens in 2003, my MSc on Human Osteology and Palaeopathology from the University of Bradford, UK in 2006 and then I obtained my PhD at the University of York, UK in 2010, funded by Marie Curie and the Bakalas Institution. Following my PhD, I joined the Structure and Motion Laboratory at the Royal Veterinary College as a 3 year Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council (BBSRC) Postdoctoral Fellow, where I worked on comparative locomotor mechanics of large mammals. In the last two years of my postdoctoral appointment, I received a EU Marie Curie Reintegration Fellowship on chewing mechanics, during which I rounded my training working closely with Professors Callum Ross (University of Chicago) and Paul Dechow (Texas A&M University College of Dentistry. On March 2013, I relocated to Australia to start my first academic appointment as a Lecturer in Anatomy at the School of Biomedical Sciences, Faculty of Medicine, The University of Queensland and in 2016 I received my tenure.

On February 2018 I relocated to Monash University, where I currently hold a Senior Lectureship in Anatomy and serve as the Head of the Moving Morphology and Functional Mechanics Laboratory. 

Our laboratory focuses on three major programmes a) Functional Comparative Feeding Mechanics, b) Jaw fracture repair, and c) Foot mechanics. Using a combination of in vivo experimental techniques, material testing, musculoskeletal simulations and mathematical models we study the function of the musculoskeletal system in healthy conditions and the effect of trauma and degenerative joint diseases on tissue function.

Visit my lab at: https://www.monash.edu/discovery-institute/panagiotopoulou-lab/home

Twitter @dropanagio

Research interests

Feeding mechanics & Pathology

  • Functional significance of morphological variation of the mammalian and primate feeding apparatus
  • Bone material properties.
  • The effect of dental development on chewing mechanics.
  • Oral and maxillofacial fracture fixation
  • Implant design.

Locomotor mechanics & Pathology

  • The interaction between foot form, substrate properties, habitat, size, locomotor mechanics and pathogeneses
  • Fracture mechanics and trauma
  • Dynamics of locomotion using finite element analysis and computer simulations.

Transferrable research skills

Our laboratory skills include: analysis and collection of in-vivo experimental data using electromyography, strain gauges and bite force transduction; dissection techniques, PCSA analysis; estimation of bone material properties techniques using ultrasound velocity measurements; medical imaging techniques including micro Computer Tomography, Magnetic Resonance; 3D virtual reconstruction (Aviso/Mimics); Finite Element Analysis (Abaqus); 3D musculoskeletal dynamics (SIMM); 3D animation (Maya); data analyses (PYTHON); 3D kinematics (Qualisys/Vicon Nexus); 3D regional foot pressures; 3D high-speed fluoroscopy and motion capture (XROMM).

Awarded grants & fellowships

2016: Early Career research Travel Grant and School of Biomedical Sciences, The University of Queensland.

2016: Outreach Grant Society of Experimental Biology: co-CIA with Dr Jose Iriarte-Diaz. Determinants of the mammalian feeding system design.

2015: Research Collaboration Seeding Grant, Faculty of Health and Behavioural Sciences & Faculty of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences, The University of Queensland: CI. [Smith M., Tucker K., Panagiotopoulou O., Hatton A.]. Lower limb kinematics and muscle control after lateral ankle sprains. $23,927

2014: University of Queensland (UQ) Major Equipment and Infrastructure (MEI) & National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC) Equipment Grant – 2014000089 CI. [Hug F., Tucker K., Hodges P., Lichtwark G., Panagiotopoulou O., Cresswell A., Carroll T., Emerick Salomoni S., Crossley K., Barber L., Claus A.]. Quantification of muscle mechanical properties by an innovative shear wave elastography technique for basic and clinical science . $69,000.00

2013: University of Queensland, School of Biomedical Sciences-Project Start up Grant 

2010: EU Marie Curie FP7 Reintegration Fellowship (PI). MACACA project. Determinants of mandibular form during intra oral food processing. €30,000

2009: Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council (BBSRC) Research Grant (Named Postdoc). Comparative biomechanics and pathology of mammalian feet. £433,077

Symposium Chair in International Conference

2017: Invited co-Editor with Dr. Iriarte-Diaz of a special issue on “Determinants of Mammalian Feeding System Design” in Zoology Volume 124

2016: The 11th International Congress of Vertebrate Morphology (ICVM). Determinants of the mammalian feeding system design (co-chair with Dr. Iriarte-Diaz)

Supervision interests

My lab consists of passionate and highly motivated young scientists that share an insatiable desire for learning new skills in the field of functional anatomy and biomechanics. Integrating students into research is a necessity for enriching their academic experience beyond the classroom and for creating a vibrant laboratory atmosphere that provides learning opportunities for all.

I am always keen to work with positive students who love science and are open to exploring new experimental and simulation techniques. If this is you, please contact me for further discussion.

Available PhD projects, Monash Biomedicine Discovery Institute

  1. Impacts of implants on bending and strain regimes of the skull
  2. Foot mechanics and pathologies in humans

Current Students

PhD

1.    Sarah Fung (2019-ongoing) (Primary Advisor, Monash University)

Thesis title: Jaw fracture mechanics in the juvenile mandible.

Prizes, Distinctions, Awards and Scholarships

2019. Research Training Program Recipient (Monash) 

 2.    Hyab Mehari Abraha (2017- ongoing): (Primary Advisor, Monash University). 

Thesis title:The impact of implant fixations and surgical reconstructions on the mechanics of the jaw.

Prizes, Distinctions, Awards and Scholarships

2019: Fulbright Future Fellowship

2018: Second Prize for Best Oral Presentation at the Department of Anatomy & Developmental Biology Postgraduate Symposium: Mehari Abraha H, Ross CF, Panagiotopoulou O. The effect of mandibular fracture bone plate repair on the mechanics of the lower jae during chewing.

2018: Monash University, Department of Anatomy and Developmental Biology, Monash University  3-Minute Thesis, Finalist

2017: Second Prize for Best Oral Presentation at the Australasian Society for Human Biology (ASHB) Meeting, Ballarat, VIC.

2017: Nominee for the Fulbright Fellowship

2017: Nominee for the Best Poster Presentation at the Australian Medical Research Postgraduate student award

2017: Australian Postgraduate Award recipient for PhD project with Dr Panagiotopoulou commenced January 2017

2015: Michael F Hickey Prize for being the highest graded honours graduate in the fields of Anatomy and Physiology.

2015: University of Queensland Deans Commendation for Academic Excellence upon completion of Bachelor of Science (Honours)

2015: Poster Prize at the International Biomedical Sciences Postgraduate Symposium

3.    Andreas Jannel (2015-ongoing): (Associate Advisor ).

Thesis title: Palaeoecological and biomechanical inferences of sauropodan dinosaur tracks from the Lower Cretaceous Broome Sandstone of the Dampier Peninsula, Western Australia.

Prizes: Winner of the best podium presentation at the CAVETs meeting in New Zealand.

Primary Advisor: Dr Steve Salisbury, School of Biological Sciences, The University of Queensland, Australia.

4.    Silke Cleuren (Associate Advisor).

Primary Advisor : Associate Professor Alistair Evans, Monash University

 

Alumni

Honours

  1. 2018: Sarah Fung (co-Advisor). Thesis title: A functional analysis of the carabelli train in Australian Aboriginal dentition. Primary Advisor: Dr Luca Fiorenza, Monash University
  2. 2017: Kirby Pitt (Primary Advisor). Thesis titleThe effect of chewing on the deformations of the macaque craniofacial skeleton. School of Biomedical Sciences, The University of Queensland, Australia.
  3. 2017: Cruise Speck (co-Advisor). Thesis title: Mandibular shape variation in wombats (50-50% supervision with Dr Vera Weisbecker). School of Biological Sciences, The University of Queensland, Australia.
  4. 2017: Laura Humphries (Associate Advisor). Thesis title: Reconstruction and biomechanics of the developing mammalian jaw joint and middle ear using 3D Imaging software in three marsupial species. Primary Advisor: Dr Vera Weisbecker, School of Biological Sciences, The University of Queensland, Australia.
  5. 2016: Chi Ying Ho (Primary Advisor): Thesis title: Distribution of locomotor foot pressures in Australian cows reared on natural substrates. School of Biomedical Sciences, The University of Queensland, Australia.
  6. 2015: Hyab Mehari Abraha (Primary Advisor): Thesis title: Determinants of bone properties on the mechanics of the primate jaw during chewing. School of Biomedical Sciences, The University of Queensland, Australia.
  7. 2015: Philippa Champerlain (Associate Advisor): Thesis title: Foot problems in captivity in mega-vertebratesPrimary Advisor: Dr Steven Salisbury, School of Biological Sciences, The University of Queensland, Australia.
  8. 2014: Grace Jauristo (Primary Advisor): Thesis title: Regional foot pressures during walking in Australian domestic dromedary camels. School of Biomedical Sciences, The University of Queensland, Australia.
  9. 2014: Madeleine Day (Primary Advisor): Thesis title: Foot pressure Locomotor mechanics in African elephants (Loxodonta africana). School of Biomedical Sciences, The University of Queensland, Australia.
  10. 2014: Adrian Malisano (Primary Advisor): Thesis title: Foot distribution in domestic sheep during walking. School of Biomedical Sciences, The University of Queensland, Australia.

 2010-2012: BVet Med Hons students working on animal foot pressures during locomotion (Geekie CameronMurphy Joshua IanPhillipa DobbsLisa BrownKatherine JonesErin Carney); on subchondral bone density in horses (Amy Amelleney) and on material properties of mammalian foot tendons and ligaments (Gamston Timothy Allan) (Associate Advisor). Primary Advisor: Professor John R Hutchinson

MSc

MSc Veterinary Science 2015-2016: Christina Quah (Associate Advisor). Thesis title: 3D reconstructed computer models of bone pathology in a koala and bridled nail tail wallabies and their potential application to veterinary education. Primary Advisor: Assoc. Professor Chiara Palmieri, School of Veterinary Sciences, The University of Queensland, Australia

PhD

2015-2018: Dr Tianyi Feng (Associate Advisor). Thesis title: Spermatogenesis and Sperm Assessment in the Australian Giant Tiger Prawn, Penaeus monodon (Fabricius, 1798). Primary Advisor: Associate Professor Steve Johnson, The University of Queensland, Australia

2010-2014: Dr. Sharon Warner (Associate Advisor). Thesis title: Basic principles of foot design, locomotor impact mechanics and disease in large mammals (funded by the Royal Veterinary College and BBSRC). Primary Advisor: Professor John R Hutchinson The Royal Veterinary College

 

Undergraduate research 

2019: DEV3990 Research Project (Natalia Zivcic) Monash University. Cortical thickness in the primate jaw.

2018: DEV3990 Research Project (Erin Jones) Monash University. The effects of developing dentitin on the biomechanics of the primate jaw.

2017: Anatomy and Function of foot muscles (Michael Valdinocci) Recipient of the School of Biomedical Sciences, The University of Queensland. Winter Scholarship.

2015-2016: Sheep Foot Locomotor Pressures (Manuel Wailan); 3D reconstruction of the elephant foot (Rebecca Morrison); Investigation of the pathological and non-pathological Bilby hock (Xavier Jovellanos)

2014-2015: BioMed students working on 3D reconstructions and foot joint kinematics (Jan Janzekovic, Vyjayanthi Kinhal, Cameron Sunderland, Philip Janowicz).

2013-2014: BioMed students working on mammalian foot kinematics (Esther McElrea, Philip Janowicz (recipient of the School of Biomedical Sciences Student Award), Cameron Sunderland, Peter Steyn.

Monash teaching commitment

Teaching within Anatomy and Developmental Biology

BMS2011, Semester 1, Structure of the human body: An evolutionary and functional perspective

Modules: Head & Neck; Thoracic Viscera: Cardiovascular System; Thoracic Viscera: Respiratory System; Abdominal Viscera: Digestive Systems; Abdominal Viscera: Urinary Systems; Masterclass Evolution on Locomotion

RAD 1031, Semester 1, Radiographic Anatomy

Modules: Lower Limb: proximal bones, joints & muscles; Lower limb: distal muscles & neurovasculature

GMA1010, Semester 1&2, Foundations of Medical Practice

Modules: Pelvis osteology; Abdomen; Perineum, Pelvis viscera

MED2031, Semester 1, Medicine

Modules:The nephron & posterior abdominal wall and kidneys

MED1022, Semester 2, Theme III Medical Curriculum 

Modules: Overview of thoracic cage and spaces; cardiovascular system; Abdomen; clinical anatomy of knee & leg; ankle and foot on bipedalism; Lower Limb III, Chest wall & diaphragm; cardiovascular systems

DEV2022, Semester 2, Human Anatomy and Development: tissues and body systems 

Modules: Anatomy of the skull; ontogeny of the skull

DEV3990, Semester 1&2, Research action in anatomy and developmental biology 

 

STUDENT EVALUATION OF TEACHING AND UNITS (SETU):

 

Monash University 2018

 

BMS2011, Semester 1: 4.4/5 Median

 

DEV2022, Semester 2: 4.7/5 Median

 

GMA1010, Semester 1: 4.8/5 Median

 

Consulting

Research affiliate Rory Hensman Elephant Research Unit, South Africa

Mimics Materialise, software review

 

Co-Presenting Author at National and International Meetings 

2019

  1. Strain regimes in the ramus of Macaca mulatta estimated using finite element modeling. Ross CF, Iriarte-Diaz J, Taylor AB,  Dechow PC, Wilshin S,  Mehari Abraha H, Panagiotopoulou O. 88th International Meeting, American Association of Physical Anthropologists, Cleveland, USA (Oral Presentation)

2018

  1. The effect of the periodontal ligament on the mechanics of the primate mandible during chewing. Mehari Abraha H, Iriarte-Diaz J, Wilshin S, Dechow PC, Aljunid SF, Taylor A, Ross CF, Panagiotopoulou O.Monash Biomedical Sciences Discovery Institute, Monash University (Poster Presentation)
  2. The effect of mandibular fracture bone plate repair on the mechanics of the lower jaw during chewing.Mehari Abraha H*, Ross CF, Panagiotopoulou O. Postgraduate Symposium, Department of Anatomy & Developmental Biology, Monash University Australia (Oral Presentation)

2017

  1. The effect of mandibular fracture bone plate repair on the mechanics of the lower jaw during chewing. Mehari Abraha H*, Iriarte-Diaz J, Taylor AB , Ross CF, Panagiotopoulou O. School of Biomedical Sciences, The University of Queensland, 8th International Postgraduate Symposium, Brisbane, QLD (Oral Presentation)
  2. The impact of the periodontal ligament on the mechanics of the primate jaw during post-canine chewing. Mehari Abraha H*, Iriarte-Diaz J, Taylor AB , Ross CF, Panagiotopoulou O. 31st Annual Conference of the Australasian Society for Human Biology, Ballarat, Victoria (Oral Presentation) Second Best Student Presentation Award
  3. The impact of the periodontal ligament on the mechanics of the primate jaw during post-canine chewing. Mehari Abraha H*, Iriarte-Diaz J, Ross CF, Taylor AB, Wilshin S, Dechow PC, Panagiotopoulou O. Australian Society for Medical Research, QLD Postgraduate Student Conference, Brisbane (Poster Presentation)
  4. Deep time to conservation: Quantifying shape variation within the last four vombatiform species through 3D Geometric Morphometrics. Weisbecker V*, Speck, C, Mehari Abraha H, Sharp A, Terhune CE, Johnston S, Panagiotopoulou O. The 12th International Mammalogical Congress, Perth (Oral Presentation).
  5. Rhoetosaurus bronei and the evolution of sauropod hind foot pressures. Jannel A*, Romilion A, Panagiotopoulou O, Nair JP, Salisbury SW. Conference of Australasian Vertebrate Evolution, Palaeontology and Systematics (CAVEPS), Queenstown, New Zealand. (Oral Presentation). Best Student Presentation Award.

2016

  1. The impact of the periodontal ligament on the mechanics of the primate jaw during postcanine chewing. Mehary Abraha H*, Iriarte-Diaz J, Wilshin SM Dechow PF, Aljunid SF, Taylor A, Ross CF, Panagiotopoulou O. School of Biomedical Sciences, The University of Queensland, 7th International Postgraduate Symposium, Brisbane, QLD (Poster Presentation)
  2. Simulated range of motion and hindfoot posture of Rhoetosaurus brownei Longman, 1926 (Sauropoda, Gravisauria). Jannel A*, Panagiotopoulou O, Romillo A, Nair J, Salisbury S. Palaeo down under 2. Adelaide (Oral Presentation)
  3. Reconstruction of the motion and hindfoot posture of Rhoetosaurus brownei Longman, 1926 (Sauropoda, Gravisauria). Jannel A*, Panagiotopoulou O, Romillo A, Nair J, Salisbury S. Lyon, France (Poster Presentation)
  4. Comparative shape analysis of koalas and wombats. Mehari Abraha H*, Weisbecker V, Terhune CE, Morrison RE, Wailan MA, Mullins CM, Sharp A, Johnston S, Panagiotopoulou O. 11th International Conference of Vertebrate Morphology (ICVM), Washington DC (Poster Presentation)

2015

  1. The effect of subcortical geometry and material properties on deformation in the macaque mandible during chewing. Abraha Mehara H*, Iriarte-Diaz J, Wilshin S, Dechow PF, Aljunid SF, Ilankovan A, Grosse I, Taylor A, Ross CF, Panagiotopoulou O. School of Biomedical Sciences, The University of Queensland, 6th International Postgraduate Symposium, Brisbane, QLD (Poster Presentation)

2013

  1. Limb loading causes variable increases in internal digital cushion pressure in horses. Warner SE*, Henry V, Roskilly K., Panagiotopoulou O, Hutchinson JR. Int’l Equine Conference on Laminitis and Diseases of the Foot, USA (Oral presentation)

2012

  1. Size-related biomechanical constraints on foot impacts in ungulate mammals. Warner SE*, Pickering , Panagiotopoulou O, Pfau T, Ren L, Hutchinson  JR. Society for Integrative and Comparative Biology (SICB) USA (Oral presentation)

2011

  1. Frequency content of impact force signals in ungulates.  Warner SE*, Pickering P, Panagiotopoulou O, Pfau T, Ren L, Hutchinson JR. Society of Experimental Biology (SEB), UK (Oral presentation)

2010

  1. Scaling of foot impact mechanics in ungulate mammals. Warner SE*, Pickering P, Panagiotopoulou O, Pfau T, Ren L, Hutchinson JR. Society of Experimental Biology (SEB), Czech Republic (Oral presentation)

2009

  1. Anterior mandibular morphology, masticatory biomechanics and dietary reconstructions of fossil hominoids. Cobb S,Panagiotopoulou O,. Society of the Vertebrate Paleontology, University of Bristol (Poster presentation) 

Professional Development Activities

Monash University 

 

2019: First Aid Level2

2018: Developing Monash University’s Research Centre on Data Science and Artificial Intelligence (AI)

2018: Child Safety - protecting children in our community online module

2018: Leadership Training Pillar Leaders

2018: Basic Principles of Ionising Radiation Safety

2018: Data Fluency for Research Team, Workshop on Python

2018: Practical Principles of Ionising Radiation Safety

2018: Continuing Education Excellence Development (CEED) Course

2018: Animal Ethics Information Session

2018: Risk management specialized

2018: Risk Management

2018: Hazardous substances and dangerous goods awareness

2018: CEED Foundations for effective teaching

2018: Hazard & incident investigation methods (S.A.R.A.H)

2018: First Aid Level2

2018: GRS: Introduction to Graduate Research Supervision at Monash

2018: CPR Refresher

2018: Balancing Work and Life

2018: Indigenous Cultural Awareness Online

2018: Research Integrity Biomedical Sciences

2018: Ergonomic Principles

2018: IT Safety

2018: Privacy

2018: Manual Handling, OHS

2018: OHS staff Induction

2018: Ethics and Professional Conduct

2018: Equal Opportunity Online Training

2018: GRS: Supervising Doctoral Studies (Online)

External positions

Lecturer in Anatomy, University of Queensland

Mar 2013Feb 2018

Marie-Curie Research Fellow, Royal Veterinary College, University of London

Jan 2010Dec 2012

BBSRC Postdoctoral Fellow, Royal Veterinary College, University of London

Dec 2009Dec 2012

Marie-Curie Research Assistant, University of York

Sep 2006Sep 2009

Research area keywords

  • Animal Welfare
  • Comparative animal tissue mechanics
  • Animal Locomotion
  • Feeding Biomechanics
  • Dental Implants
  • Foot form and Function
  • 3D Animation
  • Finite Element Analysis
  • Musculoskeletal Models
  • Implant fixations
  • 3D virtual reconstruction

Network Recent external collaboration on country level. Dive into details by clicking on the dots.

Research Output 2008 2019

Ballistic Consideration in gunshot injuries

Stefanopoulos, P. K., Mikros, G., Pinialidis, D. E., Tsiatis, N., Panagiotopoulou, O., Koutsouvela, D. G., Herbstein, J. & Salemis, N. S., 2019, Forensic Analysis of Gunshot Residue, 3D-Printed Firearms, and Gunshot Injuries: Current Research and Future Perspectives. Cizdziel, J. & Black, O. (eds.). New York, NY: Nova Science Publishers, p. 93-119 27 p.

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter (Book)Other

Biomechanics of Gunshot Injuries and Applications to Wound Ballistics Research

Stefanopoulos, P. K., Koutsouvela, D. G., Panagiotopoulou, O., Herbstein, J., Tsiatis, N., Mikros, G., Pinialidis, D. E. & Salemis, N. S., 2019, Forensic Analysis of Gunshot Residue, 3D-Printed Firearms, and Gunshot Injuries: Current Research and Future Perspectives. Cizdziel, J. & Black, O. (eds.). New York, NY: Nova Science Publishers, p. 121-165 45 p.

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter (Book)Other

1 Citation (Scopus)

“Keep your feet on the ground”: Simulated range of motion and hind foot posture of the Middle Jurassic sauropod Rhoetosaurus brownei and its implications for sauropod biology

Jannel, A., Nair, J. P., Panagiotopoulou, O., Romilio, A. & Salisbury, S. W., 1 Jun 2019, In : Journal of Morphology. 280, 6, p. 849-878 30 p.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

Determinants of feeding behavior and food material properties on the deformations of the macaque mandible

Panagiotopoulou, O., Iriarte-Diaz, J., Mehari Abraha, H., Taylor, A. B., Wilshin, S., Dechow, P. C. & Ross, C. F., Apr 2018. 1 p.

Research output: Contribution to conferenceAbstractOther

The functional anatomy of external genitalia in the black tiger prawn (Penaeus monodon) studied by micro-computed tomography and scanning electron microscopy

Tianyi, F., Paterson, B., Panagiotopoulou, O., Green, K., Mardon, K. & Johnston, S., Sep 2018, In : Journal of Morphology. 279, 9, p. 1346-1354 9 p.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

Activities 2008 2019

12th International Congress of Vertebrate Morphology

Olga Panagiotopoulou (Member of programme committee)
21 Jul 201925 Jul 2019

Activity: Participating in or organising an event typesContribution to conference

12th International Conference of Vertebrate Morphology

Olga Panagiotopoulou (Invited speaker)
2019

Activity: Participating in or organising an event typesContribution to conference

87th International Meeting, American Association of Physical Anthropologists

Olga Panagiotopoulou (Speaker)
13 Apr 2018

Activity: Participating in or organising an event typesContribution to conference

MARP Monash Animal Services (Organisational unit)

Olga Panagiotopoulou (Member)
2018 → …

Activity: Industry, Government and Philanthropy Engagement and PartnershipsMembership of an advisory panel/policy group/ board

Tanya Smith

Olga Panagiotopoulou (Host)
22 May 2018

Activity: Hosting a visitor types​Hosting an academic or industry visitor