Evaluating the Influence of Hemorheological Parameters on Circulating Tumor Cell Trajectory and Simulation Time

TitleEvaluating the Influence of Hemorheological Parameters on Circulating Tumor Cell Trajectory and Simulation Time
Publication TypeConference Paper
Year of Publication2020
AuthorsS. Roychowdhury, J. Gounley, and A. Randles
Conference NameThe Platform for Advanced Scientific Computing (PASC) Conference
Date Published07/2020
Conference LocationGeneva, Switzerland

Extravasation of circulating tumor cells (CTCs) occurs primarily in the microvasculature, where flow and cell interactions significantly affect the blood rheology. Capturing cell trajectory at this scale requires the coupling of several interaction models, leading to increased computational cost that scales as more cells are added or the domain size is increased. In this work, we focus on micro-scale vessels and study the influence of certain hemorheological factors, including the presence of red blood cell aggregation, hematocrit level, microvessel size, and shear rate, on the trajectory of a circulating tumor cell. We determine which of the aforementioned factors significantly affect CTC motion and identify those which can potentially be disregarded, thus reducing simulation time. We measure the effect of these elements by studying the radial CTC movement and runtime at various combinations of hemorheological parameters. To accurately capture blood flow dynamics and single cell movement, we perform high-fidelity hemodynamic simulations at a sub-micron resolution using our in-house fluid dynamics solver, HARVEY. We find that increasing hematocrit increases the likelihood of tumor cell margination, which is exacerbated by the presence of red blood cell aggregation. As microvessel diameter increases, there is no major CTC movement; however, including aggregation causes the CTC to marginate quicker as the vessel size increases. Finally, as the shear rate is increased, tumor cell margination is decreased and aggregation has little effect on the CTC trajectory.