Heart and Circulatory Physiology

Morphometry of pig coronary arterial trees

G. S. Kassab, C. A. Rider, N. J. Tang, Y. C. Fung


To establish a mathematical model of the tree like arteries for the purpose of hemodynamic analysis, a complete set of morphometric data of pig coronary arteries is presented. For the purpose of mathematical modeling, three innovations in morphometry are introduced: 1) a rule for assigning the order numbers of the vessels on the basis of diameter ranges, 2) a connectivity matrix to describe asymmetric branching, and 3) a measurement of the fraction of vessel segments connected in series. The morphometric measurements were made with the silicone elastomer-casting method. Data on smaller vessels were obtained from histological specimens by optical sectioning. Data on larger vessels were obtained from vascular casts. The order number, diameter, length, connectivity matrix, and fractions of the vessels of a given order connected in series were measured for all orders of vessels of the right coronary artery and the left anterior descending and left circumflex branches. The data can be used to analyze the longitudinal distribution of blood pressure and volume and spatial distribution of perfusion in myocardium.