Workshop IV: Optimal Transport in the Human Body: Lungs and Blood

Part of the Long Program Optimal Transport
May 19 - 23, 2008


The human body is a fascinating transport system, in which organs must exchange nutrients, water, oxygen, and waste to maintain life. To allow rapid access of a large amount of oxygen to the whole body, the respiratory and cardiovascular systems exhibit extremely complex geometrical structures. In the course of evolution, these organs have been optimized for efficient transfer under various and sometimes unknown constraints. For instance, the respiratory systems in mammals and birds are very different, although they are both highly efficient. At the same time, the efficiency may be substantially reduced by deteriorations, aging, or diseases. A better understanding of the optimal transport in these systems is a key for curing diseases, drug delivery, and design of artificial implants.

This workshop will bring together internationally renowned experts as well as postdocs and students with research interests in the respiratory and cardiovascular systems, as well as in optimal transport. Participants will include mathematicians, physicists, physiologists, medical doctors, engineers, and computational fluid-dynamicists. The workshop will allow all participants to gain a perspective of cross-disciplinary aspects of the same fundamental topic from the experts in the field and provide an opportunity to establish new research collaborations.

Organizing Committee

Suncica Canic (University of Houston)
Denis Grebenkov (École Polytechnique)
Bertrand Maury (Université d'Orsay)
Anne Marie Robertson (University of Pittsburgh)