Optimal Flow Conditions of TracheoBronchial Model to Reengineer Lung Structures

Marc Garbey, Stefano Casarin, F. Aletti, G. Baselli

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations


The high demand for lung transplants cannot be matched by an adequate number of lungs from donors. Since fully ex-novo lungs are far from being feasible, tissue engineering is actively considering implantation of engineered lungs where the devitalized structure of a donor is used as scaffold to be repopulated by stem cells of the receiving patient. A decellularized donated lung is treated inside a bioreactor where transport through the tracheobronchial tree (TBT) will allow for both deposition of stem cells and nourishment for their subsequent growth, thus developing new lung tissue. The key concern is to set optimally the boundary conditions to utilize in the bioreactor. We propose a predictive model of slow liquid ventilation, which combines a one-dimensional (1-D) mathematical model of the TBT and a solute deposition model strongly dependent on fluid velocity across the tree. With it, we were able to track and drive the concentration of a generic solute across the airways, looking for its optimal distribution. This was given by properly adjusting the pumps’ regime serving the bioreactor. A feedback system, created by coupling the two models, allowed us to derive the optimal pattern. The TBT model can be easily invertible, thus yielding a straightforward flow/pressure law at the inlet to optimize the efficiency of the bioreactor.
Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1-11
Number of pages11
JournalActa Mechanica Sinica/Lixue Xuebao
Early online dateMar 10 2017
StateE-pub ahead of print - Mar 10 2017


  • Bioreactor
  • Lung rehabilitation
  • Network flow
  • Tissue engineering
  • Transport of solute


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