Computational Mechanics of Soft Materials in Medicine
H. Yuan, The University of Rhode Island
F. Vernerey, University of Colorado at Boulder
This symposium will focus on the computational modeling of soft materials and their interactions with biological entities for application in medicine. We are particularly interested in materials that can be functionalized to react to external stimuli and/or change their mechanical and chemical properties substantially at room temperature, including, for instance, hydrogels, liquid crystals, un-crosslinked or weakly crosslinked polymers, granular materials, foams, lipid mono/bi-layers as well as soft biological materials (e.g., blood, extracellular matrices, cytoskeleton, biomembranes). Targeted medical applications include tissue engineering, drug delivery, tissue adhesives, soft robotics, soft electrodes in deep brain stimulation, typically exhibiting complex and nonlinear responses due to inherent large deformations, chemo-mechanical coupling, heterogeneous and anisotropic material properties, multiscale, fluid-structural interactions, and other factors. Topics include but are not limited to computational mechanics and modeling of: novel hydrogels and hydrogel-based structures/devices, 3D printed tissue scaffolds, active cytoskeleton, biomembranes, and living cells, liquid crystals, drug delivery systems (such as nanoparticles, nanoparticle-cell membrane interactions), proteins, macromolecular assemblies, fluid-structure interactions in biological systems, and tissue growth and tissue/organ morphogenesis.