Medical student mentored by Dr. Kumar honored for research

A student in the University of Florida’s Medical Student Research Program (MSRP) was honored on May 7 for his research under the mentorship of Sanjeev Kumar, M.D., associate professor of anesthesiology.

Taylor Calibo, MSEE

Taylor Calibo, MSEE, received the prestigious Lawrence M. Goodman Trust Award for his presentation, titled “A Method for Needle and Pedicle Localization in Lumbar Transforaminal Epidural Steroid Injections Using Open-Source Instance Segmentation.”

The MSRP is a 10-week summer research project for students in their second year of medical school. Students are paired with a UF Health Science Center faculty member and have the opportunity to present their research and compete for awards with prizes during an annual research day.

“I’m very excited about the future prospects of this project,” said Kumar. “We’ve had such great results that a patent for our method was filed by UF Innovate early this year.”

The work is part of Kumar’s project, supported by an IHAF Education Edward, to create a low-cost surgical navigation system based on AI.

Calibo said the research has helped him gain valuable experience in nuanced computer vision techniques, and that he’s happy knowing that the research will continue to grow and adapt as technology improves.

 “Working with Dr. Kumar over my first two years as a medical student has been a significant privilege,” said Calibo. “Dr. Kumar has been instrumental in encouraging medical students to contribute to his research methodology in beneficial ways, especially as technology has rapidly evolved.”

Kumar said he and his team are hoping to finalize and deploy the low-cost fluoroscopic navigation software for transforaminal epidural steroid injection at UF Health by late next year.

Congratulations to Taylor for his exciting work, and to Dr. Kumar for his outstanding mentorship of the next generation of physicians and researchers!