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Author Intrigila, Benedetto; Melatti, Igor; Tofani, Alberto; Macchiarelli, Guido pdf  doi
  Title Computational models of myocardial endomysial collagen arrangement Type Journal Article
  Year 2007 Publication Computer Methods and Programs in Biomedicine Abbreviated Journal  
  Volume (down) 86 Issue 3 Pages 232-244  
  Abstract Collagen extracellular matrix is one of the factors related to high passive stiffness of cardiac muscle. However, the architecture and the mechanical aspects of the cardiac collagen matrix are not completely known. In particular, endomysial collagen contribution to the passive mechanics of cardiac muscle as well as its micro anatomical arrangement is still a matter of debate. In order to investigate mechanical and structural properties of endomysial collagen, we consider two alternative computational models of some specific aspects of the cardiac muscle. These two models represent two different views of endomysial collagen distribution: (1) the traditional view and (2) a new view suggested by the data obtained from scanning electron microscopy (SEM) in NaOH macerated samples (a method for isolating collagen from the other tissue). We model the myocardial tissue as a net of spring elements representing the cardiomyocytes together with the endomysial collagen distribution. Each element is a viscous elastic spring, characterized by an elastic and a viscous constant. We connect these springs to imitate the interconnections between collagen fibers. Then we apply to the net of springs some external forces of suitable magnitude and direction, obtaining an extension of the net itself. In our setting, the ratio forces magnitude /net extension is intended to model the stress /strain ratio of a microscopical portion of the myocardial tissue. To solve the problem of the correct identification of the values of the different parameters involved, we use an artificial neural network approach. In particular, we use this technique to learn, given a distribution of external forces, the elastic constants of the springs needed to obtain a desired extension as an equilibrium position. Our experimental findings show that, in the model of collagen distribution structured according to the new view, a given stress /strain ratio (of the net of springs, in the sense specified above) is obtained with much smaller (w.r.t. the other model, corresponding to the traditional view) elasticity constants of the springs. This seems to indicate that by an appropriate structure, a given stiffness of the myocardial tissue can be obtained with endomysial collagen fibers of much smaller size.  
  Corporate Author Thesis  
  Publisher Elsevier North-Holland, Inc. Place of Publication New York, NY, USA Editor  
  Language Summary Language Original Title  
  Series Editor Series Title Abbreviated Series Title  
  Series Volume Series Issue Edition  
  ISSN 0169-2607 ISBN Medium  
  Area Expedition Conference  
  Notes Approved yes  
  Call Number Sapienza @ mari @ Imtm07 Serial 82  
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