Volume of myocardium perfused by coronary artery branches as estimated from 3D micro-CT images of rat hearts

Patricia E. Lund, Lauren C. Naessens, Catherine A. Seaman, Denise A. Reyes, Erik L. Ritman

Research output: Contribution to journalConference articlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations


Average myocardial perfusion is remarkably consistent throughout the heart wall under resting conditions and the velocity of blood flow is fairly reproducible from artery to artery. Based on these observations, and the fact that flow through an artery is the product of arterial cross-sectional area and blood flow velocity, we would expect the volume of myocardium perfused to be proportional to the cross-sectional area of the coronary artery perfusing that volume of myocardium. This relationship has been confirmed by others in pigs, dogs and humans. To test the body size-dependence of this relationship we used the hearts from rats, 3 through 25 weeks of age. The coronary arteries were infused with radiopaque microfil polymer and the hearts scanned in a micro-CT scanner. Using these 3D images we measured the volume of myocardium and the arterial cross-sectional area of the artery that perfused that volume of myocardium. The average constant of proportionality was found to be 0.15±0.08 cm3/mm2. Our data showed no statistically different estimates of the constant of proportionality in the rat hearts of different ages nor between the left and right coronary arteries. This constant is smaller than that observed in large animals and humans, but this difference is consistent with the body mass-dependence on metabolic rate.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)314-319
Number of pages6
JournalProceedings of SPIE - The International Society for Optical Engineering
StatePublished - 2000
EventMedical Imaging 2000: Physiology and Function from Multidimensional Images - San Diego, CA, USA
Duration: Feb 13 2000Feb 15 2000

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Computer Science Applications
  • Applied Mathematics
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


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