Personalized Medicine for Coronary Heart Disease (CHD)

Personalized Medicine, applied to Coronary Heart Disease (CHD). The seamless use of advanced physiological modeling of 3D medical images is a new healthcare paradigm we call “virtual stress testing” that will inform both doctor and patient about a patient’s medical condition in a way that is scientifically accurate, intuitive, and compelling, and would help encourage healthy behavior and reduce death rate. We have already developed and are commercializing this application for osteoporosis, which we will use as a starting point [Keaveny, Donley et al. 2006].

CHD, the nation’s single leading cause of death, accounts for over 450,000 deaths/year in the U.S. with 16M Americans currently suffering symptoms and 72M having high blood pressure [Anonymous 2007]. Our goal is to enable physiologically realistic models of blood flow through arteries based on a 3D medical image of the patient’s blood vessels during a patient visit. This has the potential to profoundly alter the diagnosis and treatment of CHD. Local computation is critical, since there are barriers to transferring medical images through hospital firewalls. Ultimately, patients will own devices that perform computations to predict and assess their personalized health benefits of treatment, diet, and exercise using daily monitoring of blood pressure, medication levels, and other sensor devices. We will implement rapid, local analysis techniques for finite element-based computational solid/fluid dynamics analyses on blood vessels, based on CT angiography exams [Jones, Athanasiou et al. 2006; Frauenfelder, Boutsianis et al. 2007]. We will use autotuning for sparse matrices and build on expertise in parallel simulations of large non-linear solid problems [Adams, Bayraktar et al. 2004], clinical application of physiological (but simpler) models for osteoporosis [Eswaran, Gupta et al. 2006; Keaveny, Donley et al. 2006] and simulation of fluids with immersed elastic structures [Givelberg and Yelick 2006].