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Moving domain computational fluid dynamics to interface with an embryonic model of cardiac morphogenesis.

  • Author(s): Lee, Juhyun
  • Moghadam, Mahdi Esmaily
  • Kung, Ethan
  • Cao, Hung
  • Beebe, Tyler
  • Miller, Yury
  • Roman, Beth L
  • Lien, Ching-Ling
  • Chi, Neil C
  • Marsden, Alison L
  • Hsiai, Tzung K
  • et al.
Abstract

Peristaltic contraction of the embryonic heart tube produces time- and spatial-varying wall shear stress (WSS) and pressure gradients (∇P) across the atrioventricular (AV) canal. Zebrafish (Danio rerio) are a genetically tractable system to investigate cardiac morphogenesis. The use of Tg(fli1a:EGFP) (y1) transgenic embryos allowed for delineation and two-dimensional reconstruction of the endocardium. This time-varying wall motion was then prescribed in a two-dimensional moving domain computational fluid dynamics (CFD) model, providing new insights into spatial and temporal variations in WSS and ∇P during cardiac development. The CFD simulations were validated with particle image velocimetry (PIV) across the atrioventricular (AV) canal, revealing an increase in both velocities and heart rates, but a decrease in the duration of atrial systole from early to later stages. At 20-30 hours post fertilization (hpf), simulation results revealed bidirectional WSS across the AV canal in the heart tube in response to peristaltic motion of the wall. At 40-50 hpf, the tube structure undergoes cardiac looping, accompanied by a nearly 3-fold increase in WSS magnitude. At 110-120 hpf, distinct AV valve, atrium, ventricle, and bulbus arteriosus form, accompanied by incremental increases in both WSS magnitude and ∇P, but a decrease in bi-directional flow. Laminar flow develops across the AV canal at 20-30 hpf, and persists at 110-120 hpf. Reynolds numbers at the AV canal increase from 0.07±0.03 at 20-30 hpf to 0.23±0.07 at 110-120 hpf (p< 0.05, n=6), whereas Womersley numbers remain relatively unchanged from 0.11 to 0.13. Our moving domain simulations highlights hemodynamic changes in relation to cardiac morphogenesis; thereby, providing a 2-D quantitative approach to complement imaging analysis.

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