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Intramyocardial Injections to De-Stiffen the Heart: A Subject-Specific in Silico Approach

Yaghoub Dabiri1,3, Kevin L. Sack1,2, Semion Shaul1, Gabriel Acevedo-Bolton1, Jenny S. Choy3, Ghassan S. Kassab3, Julius M. Guccione1,*

Department of Surgery, University of California San Francisco, San Francisco, California, USA.
Division of Biomedical Engineering, Department of Human Biology, University of Cape Town, Cape Town, South Africa.
California Medical Innovations Institute, San Diego, California, USA.

* Corresponding Author: Julius M. Guccione. Email: .

Molecular & Cellular Biomechanics 2019, 16(3), 185-197.


We hypothesized that minimally invasive injections of a softening agent at strategic locations in stiff myocardium could de-stiffen the left ventricle (LV) globally. Physics-based finite element models of the LV were created from LV echocardiography images and pressures recorded during experiments in four swine. Results confirmed animal models of LV softening by systemic agents. Regional de-stiffening of myocardium led to global de-stiffening of LV. The mathematical set up was used to design LV global de-stiffening by regional softening of myocardium. At an end diastolic pressure of 23 mmHg, when 8 ml of the free wall was covered by intramyocardial injections, end diastolic volume (EDV) increased by 15.0%, whereas an increase up to 11 ml due to intramyocardial injections in the septum and free wall led to a 26.0% increase in EDV. Although the endocardial intramyocardial injections occupied a lower LV wall volume, they led to an EDV (44 ml) that was equal compared to intramyocardial injections in the mid-wall (44 ml) and larger compared to intramyocardial injections in the epicardium (41 ml). Using an in silico set up, sites of regional myocardium de-stiffening could be planned in order to globally soften overly stiff LV in heart failure with preserved ejection fraction. This novel treatment is built on subject-specific data. Hypothesis-testing of these simulation findings in animal models is warranted.


Cite This Article

Dabiri, Y., Sack, K. L., Shaul, S., Acevedo-Bolton, G., Choy, J. S. et al. (2019). Intramyocardial Injections to De-Stiffen the Heart: A Subject-Specific in Silico Approach. Molecular & Cellular Biomechanics, 16(3), 185–197.


This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License , which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
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