Welcome to Tissue Mechanics Lab!

Tissue Mechanics Lab (TML) is working to improve the treatment of cardiovascular disease by applying a unique combination of state-of-the-art computational simulations with rigorous experimental evaluation.  In the TML, techniques such as planar biaxial testing, tissue fatigue testing, vessel inflation testing, steady and pulsatile cardiac flow testing, and examination of tissue microstructure are used to quantify the mechanical properties of living tissue. This information is then implemented into dynamic solid and fluid simulations. These simulations are being used to better understand how the cardiovascular system works, and how the body interacts with implantable devices.

Lab member: Front (left to right): Wei Sun, Caitlin Martin, Thuy Pham, Fatiesa Sulejmani, Erica Shin, Wenbin Mao, Andres Caballero, back (left to right): Kyle Murdock, Andrew Clark, Anup Chandora, Minliang Liu, Liang Liang.

One example is the Percutaneous Transvenous Mitral Annuloplasty procedure, in which two stents connected by a bridge are inserted into a patient’s coronary sinus. This minimally invasive procedure is capable of reducing or eliminating mitral valve regurgitation.  Currently, widespread use of this procedure has been prevented by poor performance during clinical trials, mainly due to device fracture in vivo. In the TML, virtual reconstructions of this procedure shown in figure below have been used to identify regions of peak stress, and to give insight into future design improvements. Another area of interest in the TML is minimally invasive aortic valve replacement. In this procedure, a new valve is delivered to the patient’s aortic root using a transcatheter procedure. Through collaborations with area hospitals, TML has developed the ability to turn pre-operative patient CT scans into realistic predictions of valve deployment outcomes using comprehensive solid and fluid simulations. These techniques may one day improve device design and use, and ultimately benefit patients suffering from cardiovascular disease.

Percutaneous Transvenous Mitral Annuloplasty procedure: in-vivo device location, 3D reconstruction of the patient specific geometry and simulation results.