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Multiscale Modeling of Blood Flow in Cerebral Malaria

[+] Author Affiliations
Dmitry A. Fedosov, Bruce Caswell, George Em Karniadakis

Brown University, Providence, RI

Paper No. NEMB2010-13012, pp. 253-254; 2 pages
  • ASME 2010 First Global Congress on NanoEngineering for Medicine and Biology
  • ASME 2010 First Global Congress on NanoEngineering for Medicine and Biology
  • Houston, Texas, USA, February 7–10, 2010
  • Conference Sponsors: ASME Nanotechnology Council
  • ISBN: 978-0-7918-4392-5 | eISBN: 978-0-7918-3866-2
  • Copyright © 2010 by ASME


Healthy red blood cells (RBCs) have relatively soft membranes that allow them to pass through narrow capillaries of the diameter as small as 3 μm. Recent experiments [1] showed that malaria-parasitized RBCs are characterized by a considerable stiffening of their membranes compared to healthy RBCs. This results in an increased blood flow resistance in the capillary bed, and may lead to an obstruction of small capillaries and significant blood-flow reduction. In addition, malaria-infected cells are able to adhere to each other and endothelium in arterioles and venules leading to more severe blood-flow reduction or blockage. Blood flow in cerebral malaria is extremely complex due to the mentioned effects, and requires multiscale modeling of RBCs and adhesive interactions. We developed a coarse-grained RBC model which is able to accurately reproduce RBCs mechanics and dynamics for different malaria stages: ring-trophozoite-schizont from the earliest to the latest. RBC adhesion is simulated based on the stochastic bond formation/dissociation model, which is able to capture complex adhesive dynamics.

Copyright © 2010 by ASME



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