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Modeling heart development. (English) Zbl 0987.74049
Summary: Mechanics plays a major role in heart development. This paper reviews some of the mechanical aspects involved in theoretical modeling of embryonic heart as it transforms from a single tube into a four-chambered pump. In particular, large deformations and significant alterations in structure lead to highly nonlinear boundary value problems. First, the biological background for the problem is discussed. Next, a modified elasticity theory is presented that includes active contraction and growth, and the theory is incorporated into a finite element analysis. Finally, models for the heart are presented to illustrate the developmental processes of growth, remodeling, and morphogenesis. Combining such models with appropriate experiments should shed light on the complex mechanisms involved in cardiac development.

MSC:
74L15 Biomechanical solid mechanics
74S05 Finite element methods applied to problems in solid mechanics
92C10 Biomechanics
74-02 Research exposition (monographs, survey articles) pertaining to mechanics of deformable solids
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