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2013/02/27, MC103, 12 - 12:30

Modeling Cardiac Fibers
Emmanuel Piuze , McGill SOCS

Area: Shape Analysis

Abstract:

The heart is composed of elongated muscle cells that are grouped together to form cardiac muscle fibers, known as myofibers. In healthy hearts, they are arranged in an efficient manner to allow the pumping of blood to the whole body. Characterizing the geometry and variability of myofibers is central to our understanding of normal heart function. Originating with pioneering work by Streeter more than 40 years ago, research has mostly focused on large-scale descriptions of their arrangement. Recent advances in medical imaging, with the development of diffusion magnetic resonance imaging (dMRI), have allowed to study myofibers non-invasively, in three-dimensions, and at a high resolution. This contrasts with the traditional histological methods that require tedious heart dissections and damage the cardiac issue. dMRI has also revealed important local features of myofibers across many species, which are difficult to explain using global models of cardiac fiber architecture. Consequently, research has been increasingly shifting away from the shortcomings and inconsistencies found in global models, moving instead to local models of myofiber geometry. During this talk I will show how we can gain valuable insight into how myofibers are arranged, by analyzing how they bundle and curve together using a mathematical framework derived from differential geometry.