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Archive : Applied Mathematics and Mathematical Medicine and Biology Seminar



Simon Garnier, NJITSimon Garnier, NJITEWG 336<div>Title: Living Architectures in New World Army Ants </div> <br> <div>Abstract: One of the most spectacular examples of construction by social insects are the self-assembling structures formed by New World army ants. In order to conquer the complex terrain of the tropical forests of Central and South America, these nomadic ants create temporary support structures with their own bodies – bridges, pothole covers, and buttresses – forming the backbone of dynamical ant “superhighways”. In particular, bridges formed by the army ants can self-assemble across a wide variety of environments and spanning conditions, and have been shown to recover from damage, adapt their size according to traffic, and even spontaneously disassemble when under-used. The army ants’ living architectures are an existence proof of how complex and dynamical biological structures can be achieved from the cooperation of large numbers of limited individuals. </div> <div> Over the last few years, such natural systems have inspired the development of a new kind of robotics, where simple, independent agents act together to build large-scale structures as needed, guided only by their reactions to the local situations they encounter. Large robotic swarms that could self-assemble could accomplish remarkable tasks, such as creating bridges to navigate complex terrain, plugs to repair structural breaches, or supports to stabilize a failing structure. Nevertheless, how to achieve complex artificial self-assemblages remains poorly understood. During this talk I will review our latest discoveries on - and current investigations in - the mechanisms of construction in New World army ants, with the goal to provide insight into achieving successful self-assembly in artificial systems. </div>5/16/2017 6:00:00 PM5/16/2017 7:00:00 PMFalse
Wenrui Hao, Penn State UniversityWenrui Hao, Penn State UniversityEWG 336Mathematical modeling for vascular diseases <br><br> Atherosclerosis, the leading cause of death in the United States, is a disease in which plaque builds up inside the arteries. Two concentrations of cholesterol in the blood, LDL and HDL, are commonly usedto predict the risk factor for plaque growth. In this talk, I will describe a new mathematical model that predicts the plaque formation by using the combined levels of LDL and HDL. The model is given by a system of partial differential equations within the plaque region with a free boundary. This model is used to explore some drugs of regression of plaque in mice, and suggest that such drugs may also slow plaque growth in humans. Some computational and mathematical questions inspired by this model will also be discussed. I will also mention briefly some related projects, abdominal aortic aneurysm (AAA) and red blood cell aggregation. 5/2/2017 6:00:00 PM5/2/2017 7:00:00 PMFalse
Erik Bollt, Clarkson UniversityErik Bollt, Clarkson UniversityEWG 336Title: Identifying Interactions in Complex Networked Dynamical Systems through Causation Entropy Abstract: Inferring the coupling structure of complex systems from time series data in general by means of statistical and information-theoretic techniques is a challenging problem in applied science. The reliability of statistical inferences requires the construction of suitable information-theoretic measures that take into account both direct and indirect influences, manifest in the form of information flows, between the components within the system. In this work, we present an application of the optimal causation entropy (oCSE) principle to identify the coupling structure and jointly apply the aggregative discovery and progressive removal algorithms based on the oCSE principle to infer the coupling structure of the system from the measured data. We will include discussion of examples such as the functional brain network as inferred by fMRI – functional magnetic imaging. Identifying connections in a complex process manifest as causal direct information flow suggests a new way of detecting and understanding fundamental changes in the dynamical process of a complex system. 4/18/2017 6:00:00 PM4/18/2017 7:00:00 PMFalse
Jason Gleghorn, University of Delaware, Department of BioengineeringJason Gleghorn, University of Delaware, Department of BioengineeringEwing 226<div class="WordSection1"><div><p class="MsoNormal" style="">Title: Tissue origami: physical mechanisms that drive branching morphogenesis of developing organs</p><p class="MsoNormal" style="">Abstract: Branching morphogenesis is a developmental program used by many organs, including the lung, kidney, prostate, and mammary gland, to create ramified networks of epithelial tubes that support the flow of fluid and air.  Development of the lung is dynamic, highly regulated, and stereotyped, leading to an airway architecture that is conserved within a given species and critical for survival. Interestingly, although the architecture of the airways is optimized for efficient conduction of air, development occurs with a fluid-filled lumen. Whereas almost all contemporary studies focus on the molecular and genetic programs active during branching morphogenesis of the lung, clinical observations and large animal models suggest a critical role for the (dynamic) regulation of mechanical forces, e.g. transmural pressure, in the developing lung. To investigate the role of transmural pressure in branching morphogenesis, I discuss the development of a microfluidic device to culture and apply dynamically-controlled transmural pressures within murine embryonic whole lung explants. This new approach permits the branching process to be imaged dynamically at multiple length and time scales under defined mechanical conditions over days of organ development. Using this microfluidic device along with newly developed measurement techniques and quantitative frameworks to describe the airway architecture, I discuss how lumenal fluid flows, generated by pressure-dependent airway smooth muscle contractions, drive branching morphogenesis. Together, my results demonstrate a novel physical mechanism through which lung branching morphogenesis – the temporal and spatial regulation of billions of individual cells - is mechanically regulated in normal development. These studies 1) suggest that lumenal fluid forces may be critical for sculpting the airway architecture, ultimately leading to enhanced convection of air through the mature airway tree and 2) point to additional studies to determine how mechanical forces integrate into the developing tissues.</p></div></div>11/15/2016 8:30:00 PM11/15/2016 9:30:00 PMFalse

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