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Details of Grant 

EPSRC Reference: GR/T21721/01
Title: Three-dimensional Characterization of Microcirculation Networks by Computer Aided X-ray Microtomography
Principal Investigator: Lee, Professor P
Other Investigators:
Mitchell, Professor CA
Researcher Co-Investigators:
Dr R C Atwood
Project Partners:
Johannes Gutenberg University of Mainz
Department: Materials
Organisation: Imperial College London
Scheme: Standard Research (Pre-FEC)
Starts: 19 January 2005 Ends: 18 July 2006 Value (£): 5,065
EPSRC Research Topic Classifications:
Development (Biosciences) Instrumentation Eng. & Dev.
EPSRC Industrial Sector Classifications:
Pharmaceuticals and Biotechnology Healthcare
Related Grants:
Panel History:  
Summary on Grant Application Form
The main proposals to emerge from the Sandpit - Complexity in Biological Systems meeting involved the in vivo observation of the development of blood vessels using novel combinations of imaging and biochemical fluorescent tagging, and the in vitro study of cell migration in complex geometrical and chemical environments created by state-of-theart rapid prototyping mechanisms.Characterizing the three-dimensional system of vessels in an ex-vivo sample would produce a link between these experimental approaches, and any computational modelling and simulation efforts associated with them. As a result of discussions at the Sandpit, the Researcher (RCA) and the Co-Investigator (CAM) developed the idea that the method of vascular casting, in which the blood vessels are filled with a resin and the tissue removed, could be combined with the new high-resolution x-ray Microtomography system used by the Principal Investigator (PDL) for the investigation of metallurgical and other microstructures, to extract the three-dimensional network structure of the blood vessels. The second Researcher (MK) is experienced in methods for fixating the blood vessel networks and extracting them from the tissue itself.These example networks would then be used for developing simulations and would be available well in advance of the expected results from the other programmes. A suitable test problem of the difference in network formation is in transgenic mice over-expressing different isoforms of vascular endothelial growth factor-A (VEGF-A) from the developing lens, as it relates closely to the proposed areas of study of the major Sandpit proposals.Developing the techniques would also lead to the possibility of characterising developmental organ systems including the kidney, heart and brain in addition to examining clinical biopsy samples using this method, allowing a novel comparison of diseased versus healthy capillary networks.
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Organisation Website: http://www.imperial.ac.uk