Project Ref: NGCM-0421
Supervisor: Prof Neil W. Bressloff (AACE/CED)
Co-supervisor: Prof Nick Curzen (FoM)
Research Area: Computational Engineering
Project Description: This project provides an exciting opportunity to join the long term inter-disciplinary collaboration between Profs Bressloff and Curzen that has sought to develop computational engineering methods to inform and improve the devices and practices used in state of the art interventional cardiology. The focus of this project is on the design of replacement heart valves for patients that have already received a replacement valve earlier in their lives. As life expectancy increases, the prevalence of valvular heart disease represents a serious and growing public health problem. For people over the age of 75, approximately one in eight have some form of valvular disease including aortic stenosis (AS). Treatment for AS can involve surgical valve replacement or, increasingly, transcatheter aortic valve implantation (TAVI). One of the biggest challenges facing the treatment of AS is the durability of prosthetic valves and this represents a growing area of concern for TAVI. When an implanted valve fails, it is possible to deploy a second valve inside it. However, the procedure of deploying one prosthetic valve inside another, known as redo-TAVI, presents another challenge in terms of the resulting reduced flow area through the valve. Against this background, the main aim of this project is to design, manufacture and test a redo-TAVI valve. Advanced computational methods will be used in computer aided design, finite element analysis and design optimisation together with device manufacture within the Engineering Design and Manufacturing Centre. Using real cases of diseased aortic valves to test the feasibility of the redo-TAVI design, the main objectives are (i) to design a redo-TAVI device; (ii) simulate its performance when deployed in several patient-specific aortic root models; (iii) optimise the device; (iv) manufacture a prototype device using additive manufacturing and (v) test its performance in 3D printed phantoms of the models in (ii).
Having been the first group to report the successful simulation of the deployment of a complete balloon expandable TAVI device in a patient-specific aortic root (including both native and prosthetic leaflets), the current proposal seeks to extend this research to the design of valves for redo-TAVI. In so doing, you will have the opportunity to make a real impact on an increasingly important clinical need.
The successful candidate is likely to have experience in one or more of the following: biomedical device design; computational engineering and design; finite element analysis; computational fluid dynamics and/or additive manufacturing.
Contact details for applicants
If you wish to discuss any details of the project informally, please contact Prof. Neil W. Bressloff, Computational Engineering & Design research group, Email: firstname.lastname@example.org, Tel: +44 (0) 2380 59 5473.
Keywords: Biomedical Engineering, Health sciences, Software Engineering
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