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iConcept Journal of Computational and Mathematical Biology
iConcept Journal of Computational and Mathematical Biology
Maurice Ling
iConcept Press

iConcept Journal of Computational and Mathematical Biology

Modeling Bronchial Clearance in the Lungs of Healthy Subjects and Smokers

by Robert Sturm

Volume: 7 (2018); Issue: 1


The contribution describes a multi-compartment model of bronchial clearance, which includes all relevant cellular and non-cellular structures capable for the absorption and storage of deposited particulate mass. Theoretical particle transfer between these structures is expressed by the formulation of respective transfer rates. Whilst in healthy subjects all compartments and transfer paths are fully intact, in smokers functionality of specific cellular structures is subject to significant modifications, causing the omission of certain compart¬ments and associated transfer paths in the related model. Com-putation of bronchial clearance of 1-µm particles clearly highlights the differences between healthy and diseased lungs: In healthy controls 90% of the particulate mass deposited in the bronchial airways are cleared after ten days, with the gastrointestinal tract acting as main accumulation compart¬ment for the removed particles. In smokers fast mucociliary clearance is successively replaced by slow clearance mechanisms (macrophage and transepithelial clearance), so that only 35% of all particles are removed after ten days. Additionally, the role of the lymphatic and vascular system as accumulation compartments receives increasing importance.

Author Details

Robert Sturm
Material Sciences and Physics, University of Salzburg

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