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      Structural Analysis of Fluid Flow in Complex Biological Systems

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      ScienceOpen Preprints
      Fluid flow, conservation laws, Bidomain model, glymphatic system


            Biology is about structure. Structures within structures. Organs within animals, tissues within organs, cells within tissues, and molecules, often proteins within cells. The structures are so complex that they can only be described by numbers. No numbers are of more importance than those that describe proteins. The numbers that describe coordinates of its atoms, often determined by Patterson functions (which are inverse Fourier Transforms of intensities) of crystal diffraction. Without these numbers, structural biology would hardly exist. Without numbers, engineering would not exist. Numbers are surely needed by the engineers who produce the x-rays diffracting from atoms of protein crystals. Devices of engineering have function. They are built to implement equations. Engineering devices use structures to implement equations, when power is supplied at the right places, that produces appropriate flows. Flows are the essence of life. Equilibrium means death in most living systems. Flows in biological structures are hard to analyze because we do not know input output equations in advance. Sometimes we do not know their function. Flows, forces, and structures of life (like those of engineering) are related by field equations of conservation laws, partial differential equations, constrained by location and properties of structures. Constraints are boundary conditions located on the complicated domain of biological structure. Dealing with this complexity is simplified if one systematically analyzes structure using the most general field theory known, electricity described by the Maxwell equations, without significant known error. Currents are involved because flows of biology usually involve migration of charges, convection of water and solutes, diffusion of ions that form the plasma of life, and their interactions. Interactions can dominate function. Here I show how a few complex structures can be understood in engineering detail. This approach may be useful in dealing with biological and medical issues in many other cases. In one limited case—the clearance of a toxic waste (potassium ions) from the optic nerve—this approach seems to have succeeded.


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            ScienceOpen Preprints
            27 May 2022
            [1 ] 7320 Lake St
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            This work has been published open access under Creative Commons Attribution License CC BY 4.0 , which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. Conditions, terms of use and publishing policy can be found at www.scienceopen.com .

            Data sharing not applicable to this article as no datasets were generated or analysed during the current study.
            Engineering,Chemistry,Physics,Mathematics,Life sciences
            Fluid flow,conservation laws,Bidomain model,glymphatic system


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