A Proposed Mechanical-Metabolic Model of the Human Red Blood Cell

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Date
2014
Authors
Oursler, Stephen Mark
Advisor
Solares, Santiago D
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Abstract
The theoretical modeling and computational simulation of human red blood cells is of interest to researchers for both academic and practical reasons. The red blood cell is one of the simplest in the body, yet its complex behaviors are not fully understood. The ability to perform accurate simulations of the cell will assist efforts to treat disorders of the cell. In this thesis, a computational model of a human red blood cell that combines preexisting mechanical and metabolic models is proposed. The mechanical model is a coarse-grained molecular dynamics model, while the metabolic model considers the set of chemical reactions as a system of first-order ordinary differential equations. The models are coupled via the connectivity of the cytoskeleton with a novel method. A simulation environment is developed in MATLAB® to evaluate the combined model. The combined model and the simulation environment are described in detail and illustrated in this thesis.
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