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NSF Awards WPI Researchers $ 1.8 million

A research team led by Dalin Tang, professor of mathematical sciences and biomedical engineering, has received a five-year, $1.8 million award from the National Science Foundation to conduct a comprehensive study of the growth, progression, and rupture of human atherosclerotic plaque, a medical condition that is closely related to most cardiovascular diseases, including stroke and heart attack. Cardiovascular disease is the leading cause of death in the developed world.

With the NSF funding, the team will use a combination of computational modeling, MRI (magnetic resonance imaging) scans of volunteer patients, and histological studies of diseased arteries to develop—for the first time—a detailed picture of the physical and biological conditions inside arteries that promote the initial formation of a plaque, and then favor its continued growth. The work will also reveal, in unprecedented detail, the factors that cause plaques to rupture, leading directly to heart attacks and stroke.

WPI mathematicians Joseph D. Petruccelli and Homer F. Walker are also a part of this research team, as are professors and researchers from the University of Washington, the University of California, Irvine, Shinshu University in Nagano, Japan, and Beijing Normal University in the People’s Republic of China.

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Last modified: Sep 28, 2006, 11:59 EDT
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