Transient, three-dimensional, multiscale simulations of the human aortic valve

Cardiovasc Eng. 2007 Dec;7(4):140-55. doi: 10.1007/s10558-007-9038-4.


A set of multiscale simulations has been created to examine the dynamic behavior of the human aortic valve (AV) at the cell, tissue, and organ length scales. Each model is fully three-dimensional and includes appropriate nonlinear, anisotropic material models. The organ-scale model is a dynamic fluid-structure interaction that predicts the motion of the blood, cusps, and aortic root throughout the full cycle of opening and closing. The tissue-scale model simulates the behavior of the AV cusp tissue including the sub-millimeter features of multiple layers and undulated geometry. The cell-scale model predicts cellular deformations of individual cells within the cusps. Each simulation is verified against experimental data. The three simulations are linked: deformations from the organ-scale model are applied as boundary conditions to the tissue-scale model, and the same is done between the tissue and cell scales. This set of simulations is a major advance in the study of the AV as it allows analysis of transient, three-dimensional behavior of the AV over the range of length scales from cell to organ.

MeSH terms

  • Aortic Valve / anatomy & histology
  • Aortic Valve / physiology*
  • Computer Simulation
  • Humans
  • Models, Cardiovascular