Correlation of Visco-elastic Properties of Large Arteries with Microscopic Structure
The media of 14 regions of the aorta and 3 regions of the pulmonary artery of dogs were subjected to a step-function circumferential stretch taking 20 msec to complete. The tension rose synchronously with the increase in circumference, then dropped exponentially to a reasonably steady state within 2 sec. A mathematical model, developed consistent with this stress-relaxation curve, showed how to use the tension curves to measure a viscous, a serieselastic, and a parallel-elastic constant unique for a given curve. These constants were compared with the microscopic structure of the same or similar segments; collagen was determined as hydroxyproline in a water soluble fraction, elastin as hydroxyproline in the residue and from the width and number of elastic lamellae, and muscle from the nitrogen content of a nonfibrous fraction, from cell counts and from contractility. The constituents varied widely and independently enough to permit correlating viscous and elastic constants with microscopic structure. The viscous and series-elastic constants were higher where muscle content was high, and increased markedly when the muscle was tonically contracted. The parallel-elastic constant was high when elastin was high and in the presence of contracted muscle, but seemed independent of collagen content, at the moderate tensions tested.
- aortic musculature
- pulmonary artery musculature
- mathematical model of arteries
- circumferential tension in arterial wall
- muscular contraction in large arteries dog
- Accepted December 29, 1965.
- © 1966 American Heart Association, Inc.