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Rockenfeller R.,University Koblenz | Gunther M.,University of Stuttgart | Gunther M.,Friedrich - Schiller University of Jena | Schmitt S.,University of Stuttgart | And 2 more authors.
Computational and Mathematical Methods in Medicine

We mathematically compared two models of mammalian striated muscle activation dynamics proposed by Hatze and Zajac. Both models are representative for a broad variety of biomechanical models formulated as ordinary differential equations (ODEs). These models incorporate parameters that directly represent known physiological properties. Other parameters have been introduced to reproduce empirical observations. We used sensitivity analysis to investigate the influence of model parameters on the ODE solutions. In addition, we expanded an existing approach to treating initial conditions as parameters and to calculating second-order sensitivities. Furthermore, we used a global sensitivity analysis approach to include finite ranges of parameter values. Hence, a theoretician striving for model reduction could use the method for identifying particularly low sensitivities to detect superfluous parameters. An experimenter could use it for identifying particularly high sensitivities to improve parameter estimation. Hatze's nonlinear model incorporates some parameters to which activation dynamics is clearly more sensitive than to any parameter in Zajac's linear model. Other than Zajac's model, Hatze's model can, however, reproduce measured shifts in optimal muscle length with varied muscle activity. Accordingly we extracted a specific parameter set for Hatze's model that combines best with a particular muscle force-length relation. © 2015 Robert Rockenfeller et al. Source

Heidlauf T.,University of Stuttgart | Heidlauf T.,Stuttgart Research Center for Simulation Technology | Rohrle O.,University of Stuttgart | Rohrle O.,Stuttgart Research Center for Simulation Technology
Computational and Mathematical Methods in Medicine

An extensible, flexible, multiscale, and multiphysics model for nonisometric skeletal muscle behavior is presented. The skeletal muscle chemoelectromechanical model is based on a bottom-up approach modeling the entire excitation-contraction pathway by strongly coupling a detailed biophysical model of a half-sarcomere to the propagation of action potentials along skeletal muscle fibers and linking cellular parameters to a transversely isotropic continuum-mechanical constitutive equation describing the overall mechanical behavior of skeletal muscle tissue. Since the multiscale model exhibits separable time scales, a special emphasis is placed on employing computationally efficient staggered solution schemes. Further, the implementation builds on the open-source software library OpenCMISS and uses state-of-the-art parallelization techniques taking advantage of the unique anatomical fiber architecture of skeletal muscles. OpenCMISS utilizes standardized data structures for geometrical aspects (FieldML) and cellular models (CellML). Both standards are designed to allow for a maximum flexibility, reproducibility, and extensibility. The results demonstrate the model's capability of simulating different aspects of nonisometric muscle contraction and efficiently simulating the chemoelectromechanical behavior in complex skeletal muscles such as the tibialis anterior muscle. © 2013 Thomas Heidlauf and Oliver Röhrle. Source

Gunther M.,University of Stuttgart | Gunther M.,Friedrich - Schiller University of Jena | Gunther M.,Stuttgart Research Center for Simulation Technology | Rohrle O.,Stuttgart Research Center for Simulation Technology | And 5 more authors.
Computational and Mathematical Methods in Medicine

It is state of the art that muscle contraction dynamics is adequately described by a hyperbolic relation between muscle force and contraction velocity (Hill relation), thereby neglecting muscle internal mass inertia (first-order dynamics). Accordingly, the vast majority of modelling approaches also neglect muscle internal inertia. Assuming that such first-order contraction dynamics yet interacts with muscle internal mass distribution, this study investigates two questions: (i) what is the time scale on which the muscle responds to a force step? (ii) How does this response scale with muscle design parameters? Thereto, we simulated accelerated contractions of alternating sequences of Hill-type contractile elements and point masses. We found that in a typical small muscle the force levels off after about 0.2 ms, contraction velocity after about 0.5 ms. In an upscaled version representing bigger mammals' muscles, the force levels off after about 20 ms, and the theoretically expected maximum contraction velocity is not reached. We conclude (i) that it may be indispensable to introduce second-order contributions into muscle models to understand high-frequency muscle responses, particularly in bigger muscles. Additionally, (ii) constructing more elaborate measuring devices seems to be worthwhile to distinguish viscoelastic and inertia properties in rapid contractile responses of muscles. © 2012 Michael Günther et al. Source

Bleiler C.,University of Stuttgart | Bleiler C.,Stuttgart Research Center for Simulation Technology | Wagner A.,University of Stuttgart | Stadelmann V.A.,AO Research Institute Davos | And 8 more authors.
International Journal for Numerical Methods in Biomedical Engineering

Percutaneous vertebroplasty represents a current procedure to effectively reinforce osteoporotic bone via the injection of bone cement. This contribution considers a continuum-mechanically based modelling approach and simulation techniques to predict the cement distributions within a vertebra during injection. To do so, experimental investigations, imaging data and image processing techniques are combined and exploited to extract necessary data from high-resolution μCT image data. The multiphasic model is based on the Theory of Porous Media, providing the theoretical basis to describe within one set of coupled equations the interaction of an elastically deformable solid skeleton, of liquid bone cement and the displacement of liquid bone marrow. The simulation results are validated against an experiment, in which bone cement was injected into a human vertebra under realistic conditions. The major advantage of this comprehensive modelling approach is the fact that one can not only predict the complex cement flow within an entire vertebra but is also capable of taking into account solid deformations in a fully coupled manner. The presented work is the first step towards the ultimate and future goal of extending this framework to a clinical tool allowing for pre-operative cement distribution predictions by means of numerical simulations. © 2015 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd. Source

Mordhorst M.,University of Stuttgart | Mordhorst M.,Stuttgart Research Center for Simulation Technology | Heidlauf T.,University of Stuttgart | Heidlauf T.,Stuttgart Research Center for Simulation Technology | And 2 more authors.
Interface Focus

This paper presents a novel multiscale finite element-based framework for modelling electromyographic (EMG) signals. The framework combines (i) a biophysical description of the excitation-contraction coupling at the half-sarcomere level, (ii) a model of the action potential (AP) propagation along muscle fibres, (iii) a continuum-mechanical formulation of force generation and deformation of the muscle, and (iv) a model for predicting the intramuscular and surface EMG. Owing to the biophysical description of the half-sarcomere, the model inherently accounts for physiological properties of skeletal muscle. To demonstrate this, the influence of membrane fatigue on the EMG signal during sustained contractions is investigated. During a stimulation period of 500 ms at 100 Hz, the predicted EMG amplitude decreases by 40% and the AP propagation velocity decreases by 15%. Further, the model can take into account contraction-induced deformations of the muscle. This is demonstrated by simulating fixed-length contractions of an idealized geometry and a model of the human tibialis anterior muscle (TA). The model of the TA furthermore demonstrates that the proposed finite element model is capable of simulating realistic geometries, complex fibre architectures, and can include different types of heterogeneities. In addition, the TA model accounts for a distributed innervation zone, different fibre types and appeals to motor unit discharge times that are based on a biophysical description of the a motor neurons. © 2015 The Author(s) Published by the Royal Society. All rights reserved. Source

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