My solid mechanics research program studies the complex material behavior of biological soft tissues with a specific focus on the structural function of the female pelvis during pregnancy. My lab utilizes experimental, theoretical, and computational mechanics tools to calculate and study the loading environment of pregnancy. In collaboration with the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology (Ob/Gyn) at Columbia University Medical Center (CUMC), our motivation is to understand and define the multiple etiologies of preterm birth. Preterm birth is clinically defined as birth before 37 weeks of gestation. It is a major longstanding healthcare dilemma in the US and around the world, with heavy emotional and financial costs. It is hypothesized that the mechanical failure of the tissue supporting the fetus, caused by overloading and/or premature remodeling, play a role in preterm birth. In our mechanical engineering lab we are building the engineering and analysis tools to test these hypotheses and to explore diagnostic and potential therapeutic solutions for preterm birth.