Biaxial response of passive human cerebral arteries

Kenneth L. Monson, Nicholas M. Barbaro, Geoffrey T. Manley

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

31 Scopus citations


The cerebral circulation is fundamental to the health and maintenance of brain tissue, but injury and disease may result in dysfunction of the vessels. Characterization of cerebral vessel mechanical response is an important step toward a more complete understanding of injury mechanisms and disease development in these vessels, paving the way for improved prevention and treatment. We recently reported a large series of uniaxial tests on fresh human cerebral vessels, but the multi-axial behavior of these vessels has not been previously described. Twelve arteries were obtained from the surface of the temporal lobe of patients undergoing surgery and were subjected to various combinations of axial stretch and pressure around typical physiological conditions before being stretched to failure. Axial and circumferential responses were compared, and measured data were fit to a four-parameter, Fung-type hyperelastic constitutive model. Artery behavior was nonlinear and anisotropic, with considerably greater resistance to deformation in the axial direction than around the circumference. Results from axial failure tests of pressurized vessels resulted in a small shift in stress-stretch response compared to previously reported data from unpressurized specimens. These results further define the biaxial response of the cerebral arteries and provide data required for more rigorous study of head injury mechanisms and development of cerebrovascular disease.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2028-2041
Number of pages14
JournalAnnals of Biomedical Engineering
Issue number12
StatePublished - Dec 1 2008


  • Cerebral artery properties
  • Cerebrovascular disease
  • Head injury
  • Mechanical testing
  • Traumatic brain injury

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biomedical Engineering

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