A 3D porous media liver lobule model: the importance of vascular septa and anisotropic permeability for homogeneous perfusion
Debbaut, Charlotte × Vierendeels, Jan Siggers, Jennifer H Repetto, Rodolfo Monbaliu, Diethard Segers, Patrick #
Taylor & Francis
Computer Methods in Biomechanics and Biomedical Engineering vol:17 issue:12 pages:1295-310
The hepatic blood circulation is complex, particularly at the microcirculatory level. Previously, 2D liver lobule models using porous media and a 3D model using real sinusoidal geometries have been developed. We extended these models to investigate the role of vascular septa (VS) and anisotropic permeability. The lobule was modelled as a hexagonal prism (with or without VS) and the tissue was treated as a porous medium (isotropic or anisotropic permeability). Models were solved using computational fluid dynamics. VS inclusion resulted in more spatially homogeneous perfusion. Anisotropic permeability resulted in a larger axial velocity component than isotropic permeability. A parameter study revealed that results are most sensitive to the lobule size and radial pressure drop. Our model provides insight into hepatic microhaemodynamics, and suggests that inclusion of VS in the model leads to perfusion patterns that are likely to reflect physiological reality. The model has potential for applications to unphysiological and pathological conditions.