This is the 6th Summer School on Biomechanics presenting a state-of-the-art overview of biomechanical and mechanobiological modeling and simulation of soft biological tissues. The lecturers will discuss biomolecules, networks and cells as well as failure, multi-scale, agent-based, bio-chemo-mechanical, finite element and growth models appropriate for computational analysis. Applications include arteries, the heart, vascular stents and valve implants as well as adipose, brain, collagenous and engineered tissues.

We discuss the mechanics of the whole cell and sub-cellular components as well as the extracellular matrix structure and mechanotransduction that may contribute to the development of many diseases, including atherosclerosis and myocardial infarction, which are also elaborated in the course. In particular, the formation and remodeling of stress fibers, cytoskeletal contractility, cell adhesion and the mechanical regulation of fibroblast migration in healing myocardial infarcts are discussed. Emphasis is also put on the elasticity of biopolymer filaments and networks including their failure.

The essential ingredients of continuum mechanics are provided since they are key in the modeling of soft biological tissues. Constitutive models of fiber-reinforced materials with an emphasis on arterial walls and the myocardium are discussed and the important influence of residual stresses on material response emphasized. The mechanics and function of the heart, the brain and adipose tissues are discussed. Also experimental techniques for determining the mechanical properties of cells and tissues will be presented. Particular attention will be focused on microstructural and multi-scale modeling, finite element implementation and simulation of the (bio-chemo-)mechanics, electromechanics and electrophysiology of cells and tissues.

Throughout the course the lecturers will point to future directions for research in the different areas of biomechanics and mechanobiology as well as coupled phenomena.