Send to

Choose Destination
See comment in PubMed Commons below
J Appl Physiol (1985). 1997 Jan;82(1):32-41.

A distributed nonlinear model of lung tissue elasticity.

Author information

  • 1Meakins-Christie Laboratories, Montreal, Quebec, Canada.


We present a theory relating the static stress-strain properties of lung tissue strips to the stress-bearing constituents, collagen and elastin. The fiber pair is modeled as a Hookean spring (elastin) in parallel with a nonlinear string element (collagen), which extends to a maximum stop length. Based on a series of fiber pairs, we develop both analytical and numerical models with distributed constituent properties that account for nonlinear tissue elasticity. The models were fit to measured stretched stress-strain curves of five uniaxially stretched tissue strips, each from a different dog lung. We found that the distributions of stop length and spring stiffness follow inverse power laws, and we hypothesize that this results from the complex fractal-like structure of the constituent fiber matrices in lung tissue. We applied the models to representative pressure-volume (PV) curves from patients with normal, emphysematous, and fibrotic lungs. The PV curves were fit to the equation V = A--Bexp(-KP), where V is volume, P is transpulmonary pressure, and A, B, and K are constants. Our models lead to a possible mechanistic explanation of the shape factor K in terms of the structural organization of collagen and elastin fibers.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
Free full text

LinkOut - more resources

Full Text Sources

Other Literature Sources

PubMed Commons home

PubMed Commons

How to join PubMed Commons

    Supplemental Content

    Full text links

    Icon for HighWire
    Loading ...
    Write to the Help Desk