A microstructurally driven model for pulmonary artery tissue

Philip H. Kao, Steven R. Lammers, Lian Tian, Kendall Hunter, Kurt R. Stenmark, Robin Shandas, H. Jerry Qi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

33 Citations (Scopus)


A new constitutive model for elastic, proximal pulmonary artery tissue is presented here, called the total crimped fiber model. This model is based on the material and microstructural properties of the two main, passive, load-bearing components of the artery wall, elastin, and collagen. Elastin matrix proteins are modeled with an orthotropic neo-Hookean material. High stretch behavior is governed by an orthotropic crimped fiber material modeled as a planar sinusoidal linear elastic beam, which represents collagen fiber deformations. Collagen-dependent artery orthotropy is defined by a structure tensor representing the effective orientation distribution of collagen fiber bundles. Therefore, every parameter of the total crimped fiber model is correlated with either a physiologic structure or geometry or is a mechanically measured material property of the composite tissue. Further, by incorporating elastin orthotropy, this model better represents the mechanics of arterial tissue deformation. These advancements result in a microstructural total crimped fiber model of pulmonary artery tissue mechanics, which demonstrates good quality of fit and flexibility for modeling varied mechanical behaviors encountered in disease states.
Original languageEnglish
Article number051002
Number of pages12
JournalJournal of Biomechanical Engineering
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 31 May 2011


  • biomechanics
  • proteins
  • molecular biophysics
  • blood vessels


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