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The rupture of diseased segments (atherosclerotic plaques) in arteries is a major cause of fatal and disabling cardiovascular events. Plaque rupture is a mechanical event where the collagenous plaque tissue loses its structural integrity due to blood pressure loading. The architecture of the fibrillar collagen network in a plaque is hypothesized to be the key determinant of the rupture risk of the plaque. Hence, quantitative measurements of the plaque tissue’s collagen network may provide invaluable information not only to understand the fatal plaque rupture event but also to develop life-saving predictive models for plaque rupture risk.
Polarization-sensitive Optical Coherence Tomography (ps-OCT) enables quantitative imaging of the microstructural organization of biological tissues in high spatial and temporal resolution. To be the front-runner in the field of mechano-structural characterization of atherosclerotic plaques, you will be focusing on customizing a bench-top ps-OCT system, coupling it to a mechanical tissue testing device and characterizing the optomechanical properties of the collagenous network in atherosclerotic plaques. The proposed research will be performed in close collaboration with the Wellman Center for Photomedicine at Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston (USA) and involve visit(s) to this center.
Cardiovascular Biomechanics Research Group at Erasmus MC consists of engineers, biologists, and clinicians, strongly driven by the scientific motivation of performing innovative, cutting-edge cardiovascular research. The Group combines fundamental, translational, experimental, computational, and clinical studies in the cardiovascular field, and closely collaborates with the Cardiovascular Imaging Group at the Biomedical Engineering Department, the clinical departments of Erasmus MC, and the Biomechanical Engineering Department of Delft University of Technology.
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For more information about this position, please contact Dr. Ali Akyildiz, Assistant Professor, firstname.lastname@example.org.
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Erasmus MC is an international leading academic hospital in Rotterdam. We are recognized as a world-class scientific research organization aiming to improve our understanding of diseases and disorders and helps to predict, treat and prevent them. We have access to the latest equipment and techniques. A working environment that gets the best out of people.Find out more about Erasmus MC