Image of the Engage Knee System

The Engage Knee System
Image Credit: Eric Lucas | Clemson University

CLEMSON — The Medical Device and Diagnostic Industry (MD+DI) trade magazine has selected a Clemson student’s device as a top 10 finalist for the Dare-to-Dream Medtech Design Challenge.

The editors of MD+DI challenged bioengineers to design their dream device under the assumption that real-world challenges are non-existent. The finalists address healthcare needs across the spectrum.

Eric Lucas, a doctoral student in Clemson University’s bioengineering department, is a Dare-to-Dream Medtech Design Challenge finalist for his design of The Engage Knee System, a knee replacement that can be selectively locked in extension by patients with weakened knees and instability.

Patients who undergo knee replacements are more likely to require additional surgeries, which will include loss of anatomy, muscle impairment and atrophy, and instability.

“There is no other existing total knee-replacement design that compensates for a weakened or damaged knee extensor mechanism,” said Lucas. “The Engage Knee System can be locked and unlocked to allow patients to freely flex the knee and engage in activities that may have been thought to be difficult or impossible.”

In addition to Lucas, the inventors of the technology include John DesJardins, assistant professor of bioengineering, and Frank Voss and Kim Chillag, orthopaedic surgeons from Columbia.

The Engage Knee has already been filed for patent and is being actively developed for eventual use in patients.

A grand prize winner and two runners up will be announced on Oct. 1 after the public votes are added to the editors’ scores.

The members of the public are encouraged to vote for their favorite design now through Sept. 30.


Clemson University
Ranked No. 21 among national public universities, Clemson University is a major, land-grant, science- and engineering-oriented research university that maintains a strong commitment to teaching and student success. Clemson is an inclusive, student-centered community characterized by high academic standards, a culture of collaboration, school spirit and a competitive drive to excel.

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