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Sinclair M.,Kings College London | Sinclair M.,National Institute of Heath Research NIHR | Sinclair M.,Wellcome Trust and Engineering and Physical science Research Council EPSRC | Lee J.,Kings College London | And 17 more authors.
Microvascular Research | Year: 2015

Particle skimming is a phenomenon where particles suspended in fluid flowing through vessels distribute disproportionately to bulk fluid volume at junctions. Microspheres are considered a gold standard of intra-organ perfusion measurements and are used widely in studies of flow distribution and quantification. It has previously been hypothesised that skimming at arterial junctions is responsible for a systematic over-estimation of myocardial perfusion from microspheres at the subendocardium. Our objective is to integrate coronary arterial structure and microsphere distribution, imaged at high resolution, to test the hypothesis of microsphere skimming in a porcine left coronary arterial (LCA) network. A detailed network was reconstructed from cryomicrotome imaging data and a Poiseuille flow model was used to simulate flow. A statistical approach using Clopper-Pearson confidence intervals was applied to determine the prevalence of skimming at bifurcations in the LCA. Results reveal that microsphere skimming is most prevalent at bifurcations in the larger coronary arteries, namely the epicardial and transmural arteries. Bifurcations at which skimming was identified have significantly more asymmetric branching parameters. This finding suggests that when using thin transmural segments to quantify flow from microspheres, a skimming-related deposition bias may result in underestimation of perfusion in the subepicardium, and overestimation in the subendocardium. © 2015 Elsevier Inc. Source

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