A CONSTRAINED MIXTURE MODEL FOR GROWTH AND REMODELING OF SOFT TISSUES
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Not long ago it was thought that the most important characteristics of the mechanics of soft tissues were their complex mechanical properties: they often exhibit nonlinear, anisotropic, nearly incompressible, viscoelastic behavior over finite strains. Indeed, these properties endow soft tissues with unique structural capabilities that continue to be extremely challenging to quantify via constitutive relations. More recently, however, we have come to appreciate an even more important characteristic of soft tissues, their homeostatic tendency to adapt in response to changes in their mechanical environment. Thus, to understand well the biomechanical properties of a soft tissue, we must not only quantify their structure and function at a given time, we must also quantify how their structure and function change in response to altered stimuli. In this paper, we introduce a new constrained mixture theory model for studying growth and remodeling of soft tissues. The model melds ideas from classical mixture and homogenization theories so as to exploit advantages of each while avoiding particular difficulties. Salient features include the kinetics of the production and removal of individual constituents and recognition that the neighborhood of a material point of each constituent can have a different, evolving natural (i.e. stress-free) configuration.
author list (cited authors)
HUMPHREY, J. D., & RAJAGOPAL, K. R.