Research Overview

Research Interests  

My research focuses on understanding the mechanical behavior of soft biological tissues and composites at multi-scale. Using coupled experimental and advanced computational modeling, my research integrates the knowledge in biology, nonlinear solid mechanics, and finite element modeling, especially of complex materials and constitutive behavior. I believe that the interplay between fundamental analysis and clinical application will provide the greatest gains. Through my research, I hope to gain insights on understanding the relationship between microscopic biological processes and changes in macroscopic tissue mechanics due to cardiovascular diseases, and help the development of potential diagnostic and therapeutic techniques. 

Current Research

My current research focuses on understanding the mechanics and mechanobiology of extracellular matrix (ECM) at multi-scale using both experimental techniques and advanced computational modeling. Extracellular matrix in blood vessels plays a significant role in modifying the mechanical behavior of these dynamic soft tissues. They have extremely complex hierarchical three-dimensional structure and there exists a tremendous interdependence of ECM compositional, structural, and mechanical properties. Many cardiovascular disease conditions involve significant biological remodeling of ECM. Currently there are three major research thrusts in my laboratory:

Mechanobiological study of aortic elastin

Multi-Scale model of ECM mechanics in vascular remodeling

Translation of mechanical forces within ECM