About our group

We work in a multi-disciplinary team creating sophisticated mathematical models of the respiratory system.

We develop anatomically and biophysically based mathematical models of the respiratory system - from the cellular level through to the whole organ – to understand the integrated function within the respiratory system in health and disease.

The respiratory systems main function is gas exchange. It performs this by delivering oxygen and blood to the gas exchange system – matching these two fluids as evenly as possible. Ventilation (airflow) and perfusion (blood flow) are disrupted due to various changes in structure and material properties of the lung in all respiratory diseases. With our models, we are working towards understanding the link between these changes and the impact they have on overall lung function.

The research group has created an interactive model of the lungs. The model demonstrates how the lungs work and how they can be affected by asthma and smoking. Take a look at the interactive lung model.


Our mission is to create an in silico platform capable of virtual clinical testing to improve personalised device design and clinical interventions. Our structural and functional models represent the underlying biophysical processes of the respiratory system and have been robustly designed and tested.

Research questions

  • Can we predict patient status in Pulmonary Hypertension?
    Behdad says ‘Yes’ - watch here
  • Does healthy lung tissue undergo remodelling in IPF?
    Joyce may have an answer - watch here.
  • Can we predict lung function after radiation therapy to treat lung cancer?
    Yu Dong is looking for answers - watch here.

More videos to come, watch this space!

Members

Primary contact

Merryn Tawhai
Email: m.tawhai@auckland.ac.nz
Phone: +64 9 923 5119

Academics

Kelly Burrowes
Alys Clark
Haribalan Kumar
Merryn Tawhai

Students

Daniel Addo
Yu Dong
Behdad Ebrahimi
Amin Iravani
Toby Jackson
Joyce John
Amir Rastas
Zay Yar Win
 

Collaborators

  • Australia: Alfred Hospital
  • UK: University College London, University of Sheffield
  • US: University of Iowa, University of California, San Diego, Mayo Clinic