About the MSCBL

The Multi-Scale Cardiovascular Bioengineering Laboratory (MSCBL) was established in August 2008. The lab is hosted by the Department of Mechanical and Materials Engineering at Wright State University (Dayton, OH).


The MSCBL aims at elucidating the complex relationships between cardiovascular tissue biology and hemodynamics at the gene, cell and tissue levels. The knowledge of such relations will guide the development of early medical interventions for the treatment of degenerative and congenital cardiovascular disorders.

Vision statement

The MSCBL applies state-of-the art engineering techniques to solve challenges in cardiovascular medicine. The research conducted in the MSCBL adopts an integrative approach to:
1- understand the complications caused by congenital and degenerative cardiovascular disorders
2- optimize the tissue engineering of functional heart valve substitutes
3- predict cardiovascular tissue remodeling and disease progression from a fluid mechanical perspective.
In this highly interactive research program, the knowledge of the flow characteristics in different cardiovascular disorder configurations and the identification and prediction of the mechanobiological pathways leading to those disorders will guide the development of early medical interventions for the treatment of cardiovascular pathologies.

Research areas and applications

Our research interests are in the engineering discipline of fluid mechanics, with application to the mechanobiology of cardiovascular structures. Mechanobiology is an emerging field of science, which describes how mechanical forces affect the biology of living systems. It has provided a new way to think about the function of cells, tissues and organs, and is now considered a potential tool to elucidate disease mechanisms. Mechanobiology requires a multidisciplinary approach in which the detailed description of the mechanical environment and the thorough analysis of its effects on tissue biology are addressed in tandem. Historically, such studies have put more emphasis on the biological description of mechano-sensitive processes in simplified biological models than on the implementation of realistic mechanical stimuli due to the limited knowledge of the native mechanical environment and the challenge to replicate it on intact tissue in the laboratory. The lack of realistic laboratory models that duplicate the native tissue mechanical environment has hampered our understanding of mechano-sensitive disease processes and the development of early diagnosis and therapeutic modalities. Therefore, our primary research interests are in the characterization of the native hemodynamics and the elucidation of the mechano-sensitive response in cardiovascular tissue and medical devices, with a particular focus on valvular disease.

Our current research focus is on:
• fluid-solid interactions in the aortic valve and their relationship to valvular calcification
• flow abnormalities in the bicuspid aortic valve and their impact on aortopathy
• flow in hemodialysis vascular access and its role in vascular access failure
While these disorders have been studied for decades, the causality between hemodynamic abnormalities and pathogenesis has never been rigorously established. The MSCBL has invested in the development of new approaches addressing the fluid mechanical and biological aspects of those disorders at the same level of depth, and is one of the few with such expertise.


Research conducted in the MSCBL has been supported by:
1- the American Heart Association
2- the National Science Foundation
3- the National Institutes of Health through a grant from the Indiana Clinical and Translational Science Institutes

Our lab:

Russ Engineering Center

Wright State University, Dayton, OH
Home of the MSCBL


Our team:

The MSCBL (September 2016)

From left to right: Philippe Sucosky (PI), Samantha Atkins (Ph.D. student), Jason Shar (Ph.D. student), Janet Liu (M.S. student), Ashish Madan (M.S. student), Johana Barrientos (visiting student), Andrew McNally (Ph.D. student)

Recent news

  • [1/10/2017] Publication

    Andrew McNally and Ashish Madan publish a paper on "Morphotype-Dependent Flow Characteristics in Bicuspid Aortic Valve Ascending Aortas: A Benchtop Particle Image Velocimetry Study" in Frontiers in Physiology

  • [12/10/2016] Funding

    The MSCBL receives new funding from the American Heart Association for the "Identification and Assessment of Hemodynamic Predictors of Bicuspid Aortic Valve Aortopathy"


  • [10/31/2016] Publication

    Kai Cao publishes a paper titled "Simulations of Morphotype-Dependent Hemodynamics in Non-Dilated Bicuspid Aortic Valve Aortas" in Computer Methods in the Journal of Biomechanics

    [Kai Cao]Publication

  • [9/30/2016] Publication

    Kai Cao publishes a paper titled "Aortic Valve Leaflet Wall Shear Stress Characterization Revisited: Impact of Coronary Flow" in Computer Methods in Biomechanics and Biomedical Engineering

    [Kai Cao]Publication

  • [9/26/2016] PUBLICATION

    Samantha Atkins and Andrew McNally publish a paper titled "Mechanobiology in Cardiovascular Disease Management: Potential Strategies and Current Needs" in Frontiers in Bioengineering and Biotechnology

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