Topic Review
Large Intestine
The large intestine consists of ascending, transverse, descending, sigmoidal colon and the rectum. The wall of the large intestine can be divided into four anatomically distinct layers (from inner to outer): mucosa, submucosa, muscularis propria (inner circular and outer longitudinal layers), and serosa. Its major physiological functions include absorbing water, moving waste residue down the GI tract, and temporary fecal storage, all of which involve mechanical movement and deformation of the tubular gastrointestinal structure. The biomechanics of the large intestinal tissue plays a key role in those aforementioned physiological functions in both health and disease.  In addition, chronic visceral pain from the colon and rectum has a prominent mechanical component – it is mechanical distension, not heating, pinching, cutting, or inflammation that reliably evokes pain from hollow visceral organs. The structure and function of the large intestine is systematically summarized below with a particular focus on the heterogeneous biomechanical properties at different sub-layers of the intestinal wall.
  • 6.2K
  • 09 Nov 2020
Topic Review
The labia are part of the female genitalia; they are the major externally visible portions of the vulva. In humans, there are two pairs of labia: the labia majora (or the outer labia) are larger and fattier, while the labia minora are folds of skin between the outer labia. The labia surround and protect the clitoris and the openings of the vagina and the urethra.
  • 6.1K
  • 28 Nov 2022
Topic Review
Human Body Segments
The knowledge of human body proportions and segmental properties of limbs, head and trunk is of fundamental importance in biomechanical research. Given that many methods are employed, it is important to know which ones are currently available, which data on human body masses, lengths, center of mass (COM) location, weights and moment of inertia (MOI) are available and which methods are most suitable for specific research purposes. Graphical, optical, x-ray and derived techniques, MRI, laser, thermography, has been employed for in-vivo measurement, while direct measurements involve cadaveric studies with dissection and various methods of acquiring shape and size of body segments.
  • 4.7K
  • 20 Nov 2020
Topic Review
The Cat Mandible
The cat mandible is small and has some peculiarities relative to the dentition (only three incisors, a prominent canine, two premolars and one molar); a conical and horizontally oriented condyle, and a protudent angular process in its ventrocaudal part. Most of the body of the mandible is occupied by the mandibular dental roots and the mandibular canal that protects the neurovascular supply: the inferior alveolar artery and vein, and the inferior alveolar nerve that exits the mandible rostrally as the mental nerves. They irrigate and innervate all the teeth and associated structures such as the lips and gingiva. Tooth roots and the mandibular canal account for up to 70% of the volume of the mandibular body. Consequently, when fractured it is difficult to repair without invading the dental roots or vascular structures.
  • 3.6K
  • 01 Mar 2021
Topic Review
Vascular Endothelial Growth Factors
Vascular endothelial growth factors (VEGFs) are primary regulators of blood and lymphatic vessels. Hemangiogenic VEGFs (VEGF-A, PlGF, and VEGF-B) target mostly blood vessels, while the lymphangiogenic VEGFs (VEGF-C and VEGF-D) target mostly lymphatic vessels. Blocking VEGF-A is used today to treat several types of cancer (“antiangiogenic therapy”). However, in other diseases, it would be beneficial to do the opposite, namely to increase the activity of VEGFs. For example, VEGF-A could generate new blood vessels to protect from heart disease, and VEGF-C could generate new lymphatics to counteract lymphedema. Clinical trials that tried to stimulate blood vessel growth in ischemic diseases have been disappointing so far, and the first clinical trials targeting the lymphatic vasculature have progressed to phase II. Antiangiogenic drugs targeting VEGF-A such as bevacizumab or aflibercept neutralize the growth factor directly. However, since VEGF-C and VEGF-D are produced as inactive precursors, novel drugs against the lymphangiogenic VEGFs could also target the enzymatic activation of VEGF-C and VEGF-D. Because of the delicate balance between too much and too little vascular growth, a detailed understanding of the activation of the VEGF-C and VEGF-D is needed before such concepts can be converted into safe and efficacious therapies.
  • 2.9K
  • 30 Mar 2021
Topic Review
The Subretinal Space of the Eye
The subretinal space is located between the retinal pigment epithelium (RPE) and the photoreceptive cells. The majority of the retina is a delicate matrix of photoreceptive cells and their support network which are responsible for human vision. These cells are separated from the cornea by a layer of pigment epithelium. The RPE has tight junctions, effectively insulating the inside of the retina from systemic circulation; the contents of the retina can then be controlled by transcellular transport.
  • 2.8K
  • 05 May 2022
Topic Review
ECM decellularization methods
The extracellular matrix (ECM) is a complex network with multiple functions, including specific functions during tissue regeneration. Precisely, the properties of the ECM have been thoroughly used in tissue engineering and regenerative medicine research, aiming to restore the function of damaged or dysfunctional tissues. Tissue decellularization is gaining momentum as a technique to obtain potentially implantable decellularized extracellular matrix (dECM) with well-preserved key components. Interestingly, the tissue-specific dECM is becoming a feasible option to carry out regenerative medicine research, with multiple advantages compared to other approaches. We recently published an overview of the most common methods used to obtain the dECM from specific tissues[1]. Here we provide a summary from that report as a helpful guide for future research development.
  • 2.6K
  • 25 Aug 2020
Topic Review
Bamboo Node’s Vascular Bundle
The vascular bundle is an important structural unit that determines the growth and properties of bamboo. A high-resolution X-ray microtomography (μCT) was used to observe and reconstruct a three-dimensional (3D) morphometry model of the vascular bundle of the Qiongzhuea tumidinoda node due to its advantages of quick, nondestructive, and accurate testing of plant internal structure.
  • 2.6K
  • 23 Dec 2021
Topic Review
History of Human Movement Studies
Knowing the genesis of ideas is important to understand why we are studying a topic. This topic review is an historical excursus about the origin of movement studies, following the ideas of Aristotle until positivism. The main ideas at the origin of biomechanical studies are historically reviewed, with special focus on the enlightment era. Key figures at the origin of movement studies were presented, together with the main ideas they introduced, most of which are still at the basis of modern research in the field of biomechanics. The entry can be of interest for all professionals working in the field of human and animal movement studies.
  • 2.4K
  • 29 Mar 2022
Topic Review
Corneal Sensory Nerves
The cornea is an avascular connective tissue that is crucial, not only as the primary barrier of the eye but also as a proper transparent refractive structure. Corneal transparency is necessary for vision and is the result of several factors, including its highly organized structure, the physiology of its few cellular components, the absence of blood and lymphatic vessels in healthy conditions, the tightly controlled hydration state, and the lack of myelinated nerves, among others. The cornea is supplied by both sensory and autonomic nerves, being one of the most densely innervated tissues in the body. Corneal innervation is anatomically organized into four levels ranging from the nerve trunks in the corneal stroma to the nerve terminals in the epithelium. Electrophysiological recordings of corneal sensory nerve fibers have revealed the existence of three different functional types of sensory neurons that are classified into mechanonociceptors, polymodal nociceptors and cold thermoreceptors depending on the modality of stimuli by which they are activated. The impulse discharge is conducted by these neurons to the central nervous system, where sensory input is processed to finally evoke a sensation and to regulate ocular protective functions, such as tearing and blinking.
  • 2.0K
  • 21 Mar 2022
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