February 2024

The paper Linking cerebral hemodynamics and ocular microgravity-induced alterations through an in silico-in vivo head-down tilt framework, by M. Fois, A. Diaz-Artiles, S. Y. Zaman, L. Ridolfi, and S. Scarsoglio has been published in npj Microgravity, 10, 22 (2024).



Head-down tilt (HDT) has been widely proposed as a terrestrial analog of microgravity and used also to investigate the occurrence of spaceflight-associated neuro-ocular syndrome (SANS), which is currently considered one of the major health risks for human spaceflight. We propose here an in vivo validated numerical framework to simulate the acute ocular-cerebrovascular response to 6° HDT, to explore the etiology and pathophysiology of SANS. The model links cerebral and ocular posture-induced hemodynamics, simulating the response of the main cerebrovascular mechanisms, as well as the relationship between intracranial and intraocular pressure to HDT. Our results from short-term (10 min) 6° HDT show increased hemodynamic pulsatility in the proximal-to-distal/capillary-venous cerebral direction, a marked decrease (-43%) in ocular translaminar pressure, and an increase (+31%) in ocular perfusion pressure, suggesting a plausible explanation of the underlying mechanisms at the onset of ocular globe deformation and edema formation over longer time scales.

Full text is available here.