Designing an Agent-Based Model for Pericyte-to-Myofibroblast Transition in Lung Injury; Health Inequality in Respiratory Diseases: Access to Mechanical Ventilation

Hung, Claire, School of Engineering and Applied Science, University of Virginia
Peirce-Cottler, Shayn, MD-BIOM Biomedical Eng, University of Virginia
Norton, Peter, EN-Engineering and Society, University of Virginia

Respiratory diseases are the leading cause of death in the United States. Unclear disease pathophysiology, insufficient treatments, and limited access to the standard of care contribute to the high mortality of respiratory diseases.

Through developing an agent-based computational model that recapitulates the pericyte-to-myofibroblast transition in lung injury, the mechanism of the pericyte phenotype switch can be better understood. The model integrated the signaling pathways of pro-fibrotic factors to mimic the pericyte behaviors in lung injury. The designed model can test the hypothesis in a cost-effective and time-efficient manner and has the potential to identify a novel therapeutic target for idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis.

Social groups compete for access to scarce medical resources, such as mechanical ventilation. Through online advocacy, nonprofits have fought health inequality and deficient regulations.

BS (Bachelor of Science)
pericyte, myofibroblast, agent-based model, health inequality, mechanical ventilation

School of Engineering and Applied Science
Bachelor of Science in Biomedical Engineering
Technical Advisor: Shayn Peirce-Cottler
STS Advisor: Peter Norton
Technical Team Member: Anahita Sharma

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