Formation of the three-dimensional geometry of the red blood cell membrane

Hasitha Nayanajith Polwaththe Gallage, Suvash C. Saha, YuanTong Gu

Abstract


Red blood cells (RBCs) are nonnucleated liquid capsules, enclosed in deformable viscoelastic membranes with complex three dimensional geometrical structures. Generally, RBC membranes are highly incompressible and resistant to areal changes. However, RBC membranes show a planar shear deformation and out of plane bending deformation. The behaviour of RBCs in blood vessels is investigated using numerical models. All the characteristics of RBC membranes should be addressed to develop a more accurate and stable model. This article presents an effective methodology to model the three dimensional geometry of the RBC membrane with the aid of commercial software COMSOL Multiphysics 4.2a and Fortran programming. Initially, a mesh is generated for a sphere using the COMSOL Multiphysics software to represent the RBC membrane. The elastic energy of the membrane is considered to determine a stable membrane shape. Then, the actual biconcave shape of the membrane is obtained based on the principle of virtual work, when the total energy is minimised. The geometry of the RBC membrane could be used with meshfree particle methods to simulate motion and deformation of RBCs in micro-capillaries.

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Keywords


Three-dimensional Red Blood Cell (RBC), Principal of virtual work, Meshfree Methods, Microcirculation, Numerical Simulations

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DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.21914/anziamj.v55i0.7820



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