About this Research Topic
This is a Research Topic initiated by NAVBO, the North American Vascular Biology Organization.
Aneurysmal disease can develop in any portion of the aorta, rendering the vessel unpredictably vulnerable to dissection or rupture. Treatment for patients with thoracic aortic aneurysm varies broadly and clinical decision making is insufficiently informed by an incomplete understanding of the underlying disease pathophysiology. Though biomechanical failure is a uniform manifestation of thoracic aortic aneurysm, myriad inciting factors of wall degeneration remain undefined. Studies using transgenic animals led to ground-breaking discoveries in defining genetic bases for aneurysms associated with connective tissue disorders, yet these models imperfectly recapitulate human disease pathophysiology. Studies of human specimens and blood have identified relevant disease mutations in familial disease, uncovered putative biomarkers, and defined tissue phenomena, yet often fail to elucidate early mechanisms of disease. Computational and in silico approaches can be extremely useful, particularly when coupled with diverse experimental validations. Despite several important milestones in understanding pathways of thoracic aortic aneurysm, a lack of successful risk adjudication and adequate treatment options persists.
Successful clinical management of patients will require a comprehensive, multi-faceted understanding of thoracic aortic disease. Understanding precisely how genetics/epigenetics and cell-mediated mechanisms converge to dictate biomechanical integrity of the aortic wall differently among aneurysmal etiologies represents a barrier to improved care for patients. Filling this critical knowledge gap will require the development of novel experimental designs that consider the multi-factorial nature of thoracic aortic disease. An integration of computational modeling and innovative in vivo and in vitro models of human disease coupled with genetic/epigenetic studies, single cell transcriptomics/proteomics, advancements in in vivo imaging and novel surgical approaches will likely lead to improved dissection risk assessment and novel surgical and non-surgical approaches for patients with aneurysm.
This Research Topics will consider manuscripts of all types (Review, Original Research, Perspective, etc.) on, but not limited to, the following topics:
• Genetic and epigenetic causes of aortic aneurysm
• Computational modeling and in silico approaches to understanding cell and tissue biomechanics
• New imaging modalities of tissue and vessel level biology/biomechanics and hemodynamics
• Cell-mediated mechanisms of matrix degeneration
• In vitro models of human aortic disease
• Single cell transcriptomic and proteomic analyses
• Innovations in surgical and non-surgical techniques
Keywords: Aneurysm, biomechanics, hemodynamics, wall stress, sex differences, extracellular matrix
Important Note: All contributions to this Research Topic must be within the scope of the section and journal to which they are submitted, as defined in their mission statements. Frontiers reserves the right to guide an out-of-scope manuscript to a more suitable section or journal at any stage of peer review.