A research team from Texas A & M University biomedical engineers composed of at the molecular level reveals how the growth of collagen and how it helps the body to form a variety of structures.
A research team from Texas A & M University biomedical engineers composed of at the molecular level reveals how the growth of collagen and how it helps the body to form a variety of structures, including bones, tendons, blood vessels, skin, various structural heart, even the cornea and so on.
Using computer models, and the newly developed computer program, an associate professor of biomedical engineering at A & M University Wonmuk Hwang, has been able to distinguish the difference between a complex network of collagen formed under different conditions at the molecular level. His findings as scientific journal “Physical Review Letters” feature cover story.
Collagen, commonly used as cosmetic use, is the body’s most abundant kind of protein. As the main structural protein of connective tissue, they also tendons, ligaments and skin were found. And the cornea, cartilage, bone, blood vessels and teeth are also rich in these proteins. Hwang collagen is investigated how to form such a diverse material. Specifically, he studied the collagen fibers on the surface of how to assemble and orderly network.
Hwang said that the surface of the assembly of collagen, particularly with biomedical engineers are looking for collagen-based coating implantable medical devices, in order to prevent the device was denied the body’s immune system.
“We compared the differences in the structure of collagen formation on,” Hwang said, what real difference “These molecules from different parts of the body between the? There is any difference between bone formation and the formation of collagen cornea? If You study the problem at the molecular level, you can begin to see the difference in our study was designed to provide a quantitative and detailed analysis of these differences. “
As part of his study, Hwang found that the collagen fibers are assembled into a complex network of triangular shape, wherein the larger the smaller the shape filled. Hwang explained that this type of structure is composed of a network of scientists based on fractal division. Collagen is not the only irregular pattern (fractal pattern / design), in fact, this pattern is distributed throughout nature, such as water systems, clouds, beach line and mountains. Similar or even the network between the light carrying optical nanofibers based electronics.
To explain this phenomenon has been widely observed, Hwang and developed a theoretical calculation model for network formation process, so that he accurately predict and simulate the growth of the network. Hwang collagen network of the test model, using a computer program, he developed called CAF? Technology, (Hwang means called CAF? Computer program to test collagen network model), or as a computer assist features extraction. Hwang explained, CAFE can identify individual fibers of collagen complex network image.
By combining the model and CAF ?, makes this method becomes unreliable. Hwang said that in order to accurately distinguish between different network formation under slightly different experimental conditions, similar to the distinction between the two actually looks like there are subtle differences in the painting. This is the scientists are trying to understand collagen and it is an important milestone versatility.
“With this program (CAF?), We can measure the complex image of the fiber length and direction,” Hwang said. “This is important because once we have quantitative information in this regard, we can compare directly with the simulation experiments, we can simulate the parameters and quality of a genuine collagen network of networks.”
“When it comes to the formation of collagen, we need to understand what is happening in their molecular level, and we need to be able to do in a measurable way, quantification of this, in order to better understand the growth and differentiation of collagen This leads to the theoretical framework guiding the growth of collagen, as well as verification simulations provided by the CAFE program to help achieve this goal. “