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Christopher Arena, Ph.D.

Collegiate Associate Professor
  • Director of Experiential Learning
Genderless Silhouette
460 Turner Street, Suite 304
Blacksburg, VA 24061

Research Areas

  • Biomedical imaging
  • Nanobioengineering
  • Translational cancer research

Research Interests

  • Biodesign process
  • Bioelectricity
  • Engineering pedagogy
  • Medical devices
  • Needs-based innovation
  • Problem-based learning
  • Pulsed electric fields for drug delivery and tumor ablation
  • Wearables and telemedicine


  • Virginia Tech: Ph.D., Biomedical Engineering, 2013
  • University of Virginia: B.S., Biomedical Engineering, 2008

Awards, Honors, and Service

  • Leader in Teaching, Department of Biomedical Engineering and Mechanics, Virginia Tech, May 2020
  • Distinguished Leading Research Award, Virginia Tech-Wake Forest School of Biomedical Engineering and Sciences, 2018
  • Hultquist Award, Elon University, 2016
  • College of Engineering Graduate Student of the Year, Virginia Tech, 2013
  • 1st Place Student Paper Competition, ASME Summer Bioengineering Conference, 2012
  • 1st Place Virginia Tech KnowledgeWorks Tech Transfer Challenge, 2012

Recent Publications

Arena SL, Lee YW, Verbridge SS, Muelenaer AA, VandeVord PJ, and Arena CB. Web Conferencing Facilitation within Problem-Based Learning Biomedical Engineering Courses. Biomedical Engineering Education, Teaching Tips Special Issue - COVID, doi:10.1007/s43683-020-00020-1.

CB Arena, E Morshedzadeh, JL Robertson, AA Muelenaer, BD Hendershot, JL O’Leary, AM Lee, D Choudhury, P VandeVord (2020). “Work in Progress - Transdisciplinary Design Education in Biomedical Engineering and Industrial Design Towards Identifying Unmet Needs of Wounded Warriors.” ASEE Annual Conference and Exposition. Montreal, Quebec, Canada, June 21-24 (virtual).

S Campelo, M Valerio, HU Ahmed, SL Arena, RE Neal II, Y Hu, M Emberton, and CB Arena (2017). "An Evaluation of Irreversible Electroporation Thresholds in Human Prostate Cancer and Potential Correlations to Physiological Measurements".—Applied Physics Letters: Bioengineering. 1(1): 016101.

SM Fix, A Novell, Y Yun, PA Dayton, and CB Arena (2017). "An evaluation of the sonoporation potential of low boiling point phase-change ultrasound contrast agents in vitro".—Journal of Therapeutic Ultrasound. 5(1): 7.

CB Arena*, A Novell*, PS Sheeran, C Puett LC Moyer, and PA Dayton (2015). "Dual Frequency Acoustic Droplet Vaporization Detection for Medical Imaging".—IEEE Transactions on Ultrasonics, Ferroelectrics, and Frequency Control. 62(9): 1623-33.

CB Arena, RL Mahajan, MN Rylander, RV Davalos (2013). “An Experimental and Numerical Investigation of Phase Change Electrodes for Therapeutic Irreversible Electroporation.” Journal of Biomechanical Engineering. 135(11):111009-9 (2013 Editor’s Choice Paper).

CB Arena, MB Sano, JH Rossmeisl Jr., JL Caldwell, PA Garcia, MN Rylander, RV Davalos (2011). "High-Frequency Irreversible Electroporation for Non-Thermal Ablation without Muscle Contraction".—BioMedical Engineering OnLine. 10:102 (Highly-Accessed).