Diagnostic Medical Device Development Division
Conduct research mainly on diagnostic medical devices in cooperation with the Development Strategy Division
In collaboration with the Development Strategy Division, we will conduct needs provision, development and assessment of diagnostic medical devices, primarily those that fall under Class II controlled medical devices (e.g., diagnostic imaging devices, biological phenomenon measuring devices, bioinformatics monitors, and specimen testing devices).
Study on Numerical Simulations of Blood Flows
Characteristics of blood flows in human blood vessels are being numerically investigated using CFD. The left figure shows a blood flow in a cerebral aneurysm predicted using the lattice Boltzmann method. The cerebral aneurysm model was reconstructed from TOF-MRA data. A cerebral aneurysm is a saccular dilatation forming on cerebral arteries. Rupture of a cerebral aneurysm causes swift death or poor prognosis at a high probability. Most cerebral aneurysms, therefore, are either stented or clipped to prevent rupture. If cerebral aneurysms are known to hardly rupture under the patient specific condition, such surgery burdensome for patients can be avoided. Understanding the mechanism of the aneurysm growth is therefore of great demand of neurosurgeons. This study has been carried out to develop a numerical tool for understanding the relation between the blood flow characteristics and the aneurysm growth in a collaboration with the research group of Prof. E. Kohmura and Dr. H. Kimura at the Department of Neurosurgery, Kobe University.
Professor Akio Tomiyama, Associate Professor Kosuke Hayashi
Precise analysis of fast chemical reactions using an oscillatory baffled reactor
There exist many fast chemical reactions in the field of fine chemicals that produces pharmaceuticals. Since it is difficult to analyze the reaction rate of fast reactions using a typical batch reactor, a microreactor with a very narrow flow channel is usually used for this purpose. Mass transfer is achieved by diffusion at the two fluid interface. However, the flow is laminar regime and mixing in the radial direction of the flow channel does not occur and the residence time distribution is also broaden. It can be said that the performance of the microreactor is insufficient. An oscillatory baffled reactor is a continuous reactor having baffles (narrowed flow channel) at equal intervals in the flow channel, and a oscillatory flow, back and forth flow, is given in addition to the net flow rate. As a result, vortices generate in front and behind of the baffles, inducing rapid mixing in the radial direction while it is a laminar flow, and mixing in the axial direction can be minimized as much as possible. In other words, this OBR is a continuous reactor with very high plug-flow performance. We have already succeeded in analyzing the reaction rate of a fast reaction with a complicated reaction path using a micrometer scale oscillatory baffled reactor. In addition, since the oscillatory baffled reactor is very effective in converting batch processes into continuous processes, we are investigating the performance of the continuous crystallizer as well.
Professor Naoto Ohmura, Assistant Professor Takafumi Horie
Research on computational biomechanics of physiological flows
Flows play important roles in physiological functions. Examples include blood flows, respiratory airflows, and gastrointestinal flows. A small change in flows may cause several types of diseases. However, it is experimentally difficult to visualize the flows in our body. We are developing computational biomechanics of physiological flows for understanding physiological functions and diseases from mechanical perspectives. Flows in our body are often very complex. For instance, blood is a suspension of red blood cells, and food bolus in the gastrointestinal system consists of gases, liquids and solids. We must analyze an integrated system, coupling fluid mechanics with solid mechanics, biochemical interaction etc. We will establish biofluid mechanics of the gastrointestinal system and computational biomechanics of malaria and metastasis using advanced techniques of computational mechanics.
Professor Yohsuke Imai, Assistant Professor Shunichi Ishida
Study on novel hydrogels that work as an anticancer drug
Supramolecular hydrogel, which is formed by the self-assembly of small molecular building blocks (low-molecular-weight gelators), is a new class of hydrogel discovered in the last decade that has attracted much attention owing to being thermoreversible, designable and responsive to external stimuli. We found supramolecular gelators that worked as unique candidates of anti-cancer drugs. The anti-cancer supramolecular gelators, we recently synthesized peptide-amphiphile, has a simple molecular structure that can gelate the interior of cancer cells in the presence of cancer-related enzyme.
Professor Tatsuo Maruyama