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Applied Math and Comp Sci Colloquium

Friday, February 14, 2020 - 2:00pm

Noelia Grande Gutierrez

University of Pennsylvania


University of Pennsylvania


Computational methods are emerging in the field of cardiovascular medicine as relevant tools for diagnosis, treatment strategy optimization and quantification of disease progression. Thrombosis is the main complication associated with cardiovascular disease, resulting in myocardial infarction and stroke, the leading cause of death globally. Understanding why blood clots form under specific flow conditions and how growth may be affected by hemodynamics, patient-specific coagulation profiles, genetics or other systemic factors would have a huge impact in the medical community.

In this talk, I will present an image-based computational framework combining a deep understanding of cardiovascular physiology with advanced numerical methods and high performance computing; to obtain fully resolved patient-specific hemodynamic data relevant to thrombotic risk stratification. Simulations are performed with finite element methods incorporating fluid structure interaction capabilities and closed loop lumped parameter models to represent vascular boundary conditions. I will also discuss some of the biochemical aspects of thrombus initiation and how these processes can be modeled using a continuum approach. I use a new model based on scalar transport that incorporates velocity fields from patient-specific simulations to track activation and accumulation of platelets and other blood components critical to the coagulation cascade. I apply these tools to investigate the implications of hemodynamics in coronary artery aneurysms thrombus formation in children with Kawasaki disease, the most common cause of acquired heart disease in children. The primary translational goal is to support clinical decisions about when and if a patient needs to start systemic anti-coagulation therapy. My results demonstrate that hemodynamic variables such as wall shear stress and residence time are significantly more predictive of thrombotic risk than the anatomical measurements currently used in clinical practice.

Finally, I will introduce a new multi-fidelity framework to couple the macro and micro scales in the coronary circulation that will allow patient-specific modeling of clot formation and growth. The numerical coupling of a 1D and 3D model of the Navier-Stokes equations of blood flow, provides the advantages of a reduced order model without losing the patient-specific nature of the simulation, and high fidelity results in the regions of interest, including hemodynamics, chemical reactions and transport at the microscopic level.


Noelia Grande Gutiérrez is a postdoctoral research fellow in the Diamond Lab, at the University of Pennsylvania, where she is developing new multi-fidelity models that allow investigating patient-specific clot formation and growth for coronary artery disease patients. Her research interests lie at the intersection of computational engineering and cardiovascular medicine, and involve the development and application of multi-physics models that contribute to support clinical-decision making and provide novel insight into cardiovascular disease. She graduated with a PhD in Mechanical Engineering from Stanford University in 2019. She obtained a M.S. in Engineering Sciences from the University of California, San Diego, a M.S in Biomedical Engineering from the University of Barcelona and her B.S. in Aerospace Engineering from the Technical University of Madrid. Dr. Grande Gutiérrez has been awarded fellowships from the American Heart Association and “la Caixa” foundation.