A Theoretical Model for Flow Regulation in the Cerebral Cortex
Activation of a region of the brain results in a local increase in blood flow to rapidly supply oxygen and nutrients to active neurons, a process called neurovascular coupling (NVC). This flow response is dependent on conducted responses (CR): electrical signals propagating upstream along the vessel wall signaling for vessel contraction or dilation. Despite these basic mechanisms being known, many of the details of NVC and CR behavior remain poorly understood. This work applies mathematical models of CR behavior and flow regulation in order to investigate the effects of important cell-level mechanisms on CRs and overall blood flow during NVC.
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