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Blood in motion

Project Bloomo
Research Area Bio Sciences
Principal Investigator(s) Prof.Dr. Federico Toschi
Institution(s)
  • Technical University of Eindhoven, Department of Applied Physics, Eindhoven, The Netherlands
  • IAC-CNR, Roma, Italy

Abstract

Blood is a specialized body fluid that delivers necessary substances to the body’s cells while transporting waste products away. From a fluid mech anical point of view, blood is characterized by extraordinary rheological properties due to the presence of a massive volume fraction of highly deformable erythrocytes (red blood cells). The presence of red blood cells gives blood its remarkable non-Newtonian fluid properties, which allow an efficient transpo rt of oxygen, nutrients, and cells from large arteries (>1cm in diameter) to the complex network of small capillaries (5-10 μm in diameter). In order to understand thrombus formation (i.e. initiation and growth) the knowledge of local hemodynamics is fundamental. We plan a detailed investigation of the pla sma and erythrocyte dynamics by means of direct numerical simulations which resolve the flow field as well as the individual cells. We aim at studying the highresolution, long-time dynamics of both plasma and cells.
Our goals are to investigate in detail the dynamics of plasma between red blood cells, to record and study the time behavior of red blood cells, as well as to correlate the behavior of close-by red blood cells amongst themselves and with local p lasma properties. Further, we will study the resulting non-Newtonian flow and characterize it in terms of an effective viscosity also in relation with the local flow and cell/clogging configurations.

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