College of Engineering News • Iowa State University

Vessel-on-a-chip: Understanding blood clot formation

Cardiovascular diseases are the major cause of death around the world and accounted for 31% of all global deaths in 2015. Thrombosis, or blood clots, are the most common pathology leading to these life-threatening conditions. 

Professor Long Que has been developing a blood vessel mimicking platform with quantitative flow control, both flow rate and flow direction, quantitative control of pharmacological agents on platelets and the ability of monitoring the behaviors of platelets at a single cell level.  

“Our long-term goal is to lessen the severity of thrombosis, and eventually other cardiovascular diseases,” Que said. “Local blood flow and shear conditions are important mechanical factors initiating platelet adhesion and activation, studying platelet functions under controllable flow conditions and under controllable pharmacological agents’ treatment is critical for the understanding of the mechanisms of thrombus formation and therapeutics.”