A continuum mechanical framework for modeling tumor growth and treatment in two- and three-phase systems

Cass T. Miller, William G. Gray, Bernhard A. Schrefler

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Scopus citations


The growth and treatment of tumors is an important problem to society that involves the manifestation of cellular phenomena at length scales on the order of centimeters. Continuum mechanical approaches are being increasingly used to model tumors at the largest length scales of concern. The issue of how to best connect such descriptions to smaller-scale descriptions remains open. We formulate a framework to derive macroscale models of tumor behavior using the thermodynamically constrained averaging theory (TCAT), which provides a firm connection with the microscale and constraints on permissible forms of closure relations. We build on developments in the porous medium mechanics literature to formulate fundamental entropy inequality expressions for a general class of three-phase, compositional models at the macroscale. We use the general framework derived to formulate two classes of models, a two-phase model and a three-phase model. The general TCAT framework derived forms the basis for a wide range of potential models of varying sophistication, which can be derived, approximated, and applied to understand not only tumor growth but also the effectiveness of various treatment modalities.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)461-489
Number of pages29
JournalArchive of Applied Mechanics
Issue number2
StatePublished - Feb 2022


  • Mass transfer
  • Model formulation
  • Multiphase flow
  • Porous medium
  • Reactions
  • Species transport
  • TCAT

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Mechanical Engineering


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