Professional Education

  • Bachelor of Science, University Of Tehran (2003)
  • Master of Engineering, Temple University (2009)
  • Doctor of Philosophy, Temple University (2014)

Stanford Advisors

Current Research and Scholarly Interests

My current research focuses on understanding how sudden motions of the head, in the absence of direct contact, could lead to “mild” traumatic brain injury.

Lab Affiliations

All Publications

  • Bandwidth and sample rate requirements for wearable head impact sensors JOURNAL OF BIOMECHANICS Wu, L. C., Laksari, K., Kuo, C., Luck, J. F., Kleiven, S., Bass, C. R., Camarillo, D. B. 2016; 49 (13): 2918-2924


    Wearable inertial sensors measure human head impact kinematics important to the on-going development and validation of head injury criteria. However, sensor specifications have not been scientifically justified in the context of the anticipated field impact dynamics. The objective of our study is to determine the minimum bandwidth and sample rate required to capture the impact frequency response relevant to injury. We used high-bandwidth head impact data as ground-truth measurements, and investigated the attenuation of various injury criteria at lower bandwidths. Given a 10% attenuation threshold, we determined the minimum bandwidths required to study injury criteria based on skull kinematics and brain deformation in three different model systems: helmeted cadaver (no neck), unhelmeted cadaver (no neck), and helmeted dummy impacts (with neck). We found that higher bandwidths are required for unhelmeted impacts in general and for studying strain rate injury criteria. Minimum gyroscope bandwidths of 300Hz in helmeted sports and 500Hz in unhelmeted sports are necessary to study strain rate based injury criteria. A minimum accelerometer bandwidth of 500Hz in unhelmeted sports is necessary to study most injury criteria. Current devices typically sample at 1000Hz, with gyroscope bandwidths below 200Hz, which are not always sufficient according to these requirements. With hard contact test conditions, the identified requirements may be higher than most soft contacts on the field, but should be satisfied to capture the worst contact, and often higher risk, scenarios relative to the specific sport or activity. Our findings will help establish standard guidelines for sensor choice and design in traumatic brain injury research.

    View details for DOI 10.1016/j.jbiomech.2016.07.004

    View details for Web of Science ID 000385472300047

    View details for PubMedID 27497499

  • Energy-based constitutive modelling of local material properties of canine aortas. Royal Society open science Laksari, K., Shahmirzadi, D., Acosta, C. J., Konofagou, E. 2016; 3 (9): 160365-?


    This study aims at determining the in vitro anisotropic mechanical behaviour of canine aortic tissue. We specifically focused on spatial variations of these properties along the axis of the vessel. We performed uniaxial stretch tests on canine aortic samples in both circumferential and longitudinal directions, as well as histological examinations to derive the tissue's fibre orientations. We subsequently characterized a constitutive model that incorporates both phenomenological and structural elements to account for macroscopic and microstructural behaviour of the tissue. We showed the two fibre families were oriented at similar angles with respect to the aorta's axis. We also found significant changes in mechanical behaviour of the tissue as a function of axial position from proximal to distal direction: the fibres become more aligned with the aortic axis from 46° to 30°. Also, the linear shear modulus of media decreased as we moved distally along the aortic axis from 139 to 64 kPa. These changes derived from the parameters in the nonlinear constitutive model agreed well with the changes in tissue structure. In addition, we showed that isotropic contribution, carried by elastic lamellae, to the total stress induced in the tissue decreases at higher stretch ratios, whereas anisotropic stress, carried by collagen fibres, increases. The constitutive models can be readily used to design computational models of tissue deformation during physiological loading cycles. The findings of this study extend the understanding of local mechanical properties that could lead to region-specific diagnostics and treatment of arterial diseases.

    View details for PubMedID 27703701

  • Six Degree-of-Freedom Measurements of Human Mild Traumatic Brain Injury ANNALS OF BIOMEDICAL ENGINEERING Hernandez, F., Wu, L. C., Yip, M. C., Laksari, K., Hoffman, A. R., Lopez, J. R., Grant, G. A., Kleiven, S., Camarillo, D. B. 2015; 43 (8): 1918-1934


    This preliminary study investigated whether direct measurement of head rotation improves prediction of mild traumatic brain injury (mTBI). Although many studies have implicated rotation as a primary cause of mTBI, regulatory safety standards use 3 degree-of-freedom (3DOF) translation-only kinematic criteria to predict injury. Direct 6DOF measurements of human head rotation (3DOF) and translation (3DOF) have not been previously available to examine whether additional DOFs improve injury prediction. We measured head impacts in American football, boxing, and mixed martial arts using 6DOF instrumented mouthguards, and predicted clinician-diagnosed injury using 12 existing kinematic criteria and 6 existing brain finite element (FE) criteria. Among 513 measured impacts were the first two 6DOF measurements of clinically diagnosed mTBI. For this dataset, 6DOF criteria were the most predictive of injury, more than 3DOF translation-only and 3DOF rotation-only criteria. Peak principal strain in the corpus callosum, a 6DOF FE criteria, was the strongest predictor, followed by two criteria that included rotation measurements, peak rotational acceleration magnitude and Head Impact Power (HIP). These results suggest head rotation measurements may improve injury prediction. However, more 6DOF data is needed to confirm this evaluation of existing injury criteria, and to develop new criteria that considers directional sensitivity to injury.

    View details for DOI 10.1007/s10439-014-1212-4

    View details for Web of Science ID 000358249800018

    View details for PubMedID 25533767

  • Resonance of human brain under head acceleration. Journal of the Royal Society, Interface / the Royal Society Laksari, K., Wu, L. C., Kurt, M., Kuo, C., Camarillo, D. C. 2015; 12 (108)


    Although safety standards have reduced fatal head trauma due to single severe head impacts, mild trauma from repeated head exposures may carry risks of long-term chronic changes in the brain's function and structure. To study the physical sensitivities of the brain to mild head impacts, we developed the first dynamic model of the skull-brain based on in vivo MRI data. We showed that the motion of the brain can be described by a rigid-body with constrained kinematics. We further demonstrated that skull-brain dynamics can be approximated by an under-damped system with a low-frequency resonance at around 15 Hz. Furthermore, from our previous field measurements, we found that head motions in a variety of activities, including contact sports, show a primary frequency of less than 20 Hz. This implies that typical head exposures may drive the brain dangerously close to its mechanical resonance and lead to amplified brain-skull relative motions. Our results suggest a possible cause for mild brain trauma, which could occur due to repetitive low-acceleration head oscillations in a variety of recreational and occupational activities.

    View details for DOI 10.1098/rsif.2015.0331

    View details for PubMedID 26063824

  • Computational simulation of the mechanical response of brain tissue under blast loading BIOMECHANICS AND MODELING IN MECHANOBIOLOGY Laksari, K., Assari, S., Seibold, B., Sadeghipour, K., Darvish, K. 2015; 14 (3): 459-472


    In the present study, numerical simulations of nonlinear wave propagation and shock formation in brain tissue have been presented and a new mechanism of injury for blast-induced neurotrauma (BINT) is proposed. A quasilinear viscoelastic (QLV) constitutive material model was used that encompasses the nonlinearity as well as the rate dependence of the tissue relevant to BINT modeling. A one-dimensional model was implemented using the discontinuous Galerkin finite element method and studied with displacement- and pressure-input boundary conditions. The model was validated against LS-DYNA finite element code and theoretical results for specific conditions that resulted in shock wave formation. It was shown that a continuous wave can become a shock wave as it propagates in the QLV brain tissue when the initial changes in acceleration are beyond a certain limit. The high spatial gradient of stress and strain at the shock front cause large relative motions at the cellular scale at high temporal rates even when the maximum stresses and strains are relatively low. This gradient-induced local deformation may occur away from the boundary and is proposed as a contributing factor to the diffuse nature of BINT.

    View details for DOI 10.1007/s10237-014-0616-2

    View details for Web of Science ID 000354408100003

    View details for PubMedID 25205088

  • Mechanical response of brain tissue under blast loading JOURNAL OF THE MECHANICAL BEHAVIOR OF BIOMEDICAL MATERIALS Laksari, K., Sadeghipour, K., Darvish, K. 2014; 32: 132-144


    In this study, a framework for understanding the propagation of stress waves in brain tissue under blast loading has been developed. It was shown that tissue nonlinearity and rate dependence are the key parameters in predicting the mechanical behavior under such loadings, as they determine whether traveling waves could become steeper and eventually evolve into shock discontinuities. To investigate this phenomenon, in the present study, brain tissue has been characterized as a quasi-linear viscoelastic (QLV) material and a nonlinear constitutive model has been developed for the tissue that spans from medium loading rates up to blast rates. It was shown that development of shock waves is possible inside the head in response to high rate compressive pressure waves. Finally, it was argued that injury to the nervous tissue at the microstructural level could be partly attributed to the high stress gradients with high rates generated at the shock front and this was proposed as a mechanism of injury in brain tissue.

    View details for DOI 10.1016/j.jmbbm.2013.12.021

    View details for Web of Science ID 000333488300014

    View details for PubMedID 24457112

  • Constitutive model for brain tissue under finite compression JOURNAL OF BIOMECHANICS Laksari, K., Shafieian, M., Darvish, K. 2012; 45 (4): 642-646


    While advances in computational models of mechanical phenomena have made it possible to simulate dynamically complex problems in biomechanics, accurate material models for soft tissues, particularly brain tissue, have proven to be very challenging. Most studies in the literature on material properties of brain tissue are performed in shear loading and very few tackle the behavior of brain in compression. In this study, a viscoelastic constitutive model of bovine brain tissue under finite step-and-hold uniaxial compression with 10 s(-1) ramp rate and 20 s hold time has been developed. The assumption of quasi-linear viscoelasticity (QLV) was validated for strain levels of up to 35%. A generalized Rivlin model was used for the isochoric part of the deformation and it was shown that at least three terms (C(10), C(01) and C(11)) are needed to accurately capture the material behavior. Furthermore, for the volumetric deformation, a two parameter Ogden model was used and the extent of material incompressibility was studied. The hyperelastic material parameters were determined through extracting and fitting to two isochronous curves (0.06 s and 14 s) approximating the instantaneous and steady-state elastic responses. Viscoelastic relaxation was characterized at five decay rates (100, 10, 1, 0.1, 0 s(-1)) and the results in compression and their extrapolation to tension were compared against previous models.

    View details for DOI 10.1016/j.jbiomech.2011.12.023

    View details for Web of Science ID 000301748800003

    View details for PubMedID 22281404