Regimes of flow over complex structures of endothelial glycocalyx: a molecular dynamics simulation study

Xi Zhuo Jiang, Muye Feng, Yiannis Ventikos, Kai H. Luo

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

13 Citations (Scopus)


Flow patterns on surfaces grafted with complex structures play a pivotal role in many engineering and biomedical applications. In this research, large-scale molecular dynamics (MD) simulations are conducted to study the flow over complex surface structures of an endothelial glycocalyx layer. A detailed structure of glycocalyx has been adopted and the flow/glycocalyx system comprises about 5,800,000 atoms. Four cases involving varying external forces and modified glycocalyx configurations are constructed to reveal intricate fluid behaviour. Flow profiles including temporal evolutions and spatial distributions of velocity are illustrated. Moreover, streamline length and vorticity distributions under the four scenarios are compared and discussed to elucidate the effects of external forces and glycocalyx configurations on flow patterns. Results show that sugar chain configurations affect streamline length distributions but their impact on vorticity distributions is statistically insignificant, whilst the influence of the external forces on both streamline length and vorticity distributions are trivial. Finally, a regime diagram for flow over complex surface structures is proposed to categorise flow patterns.

Original languageEnglish
Article number5732
Number of pages10
JournalScientific Reports
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 10 Apr 2018
Externally publishedYes

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