Ronald Fortunato 

Ronald Fortunato

Faculty Mentor: Spandan Maiti

Research:

Rupture of intracranial aneurysms (IA) is a highly lethal event thus, early identification and treatment of high-risk patients are crucial for an improved clinical outcome. Patient-specific treatment strategies are currently based on the aneurysm size, however, even aneurysms determined to be low risk by these guidelines have been shown to rupture.  In addition, risks associated with surgical treatment of IA can exceed the natural risk of rupture, therefore, there is an urgent need to identify the physical causes of aneurysm rupture so that targets for improved patient management strategies can be identified. Mr. Fortunato's research involves modeling of soft tissue biomechanics to better understand tissue function and effect of pathology.  Finite element analysis is used to simulate soft biological tissues under healthy and pathological conditions. High fidelity structural models that capture main load-bearing components of arterial tissue are used such that transparent links can be made between changes to the model and changes to the physiology. Outputs of these simulations can identify biomechanical factors that govern tissue failure and eventual rupture. Failure of the IA wall is multifactorial and until we identify the range of factors governing IA rupture, we cannot design improved patient-specific clinical interventions. 

Publications:

  • Sang, C., Maiti, S., Fortunato, R., Kofler, J., Robertson, A.M., 2018. A Uniaxial Testing Approach for Consistent Failure in Vascular Tissues. Journal of Biomechanical Engineering 140, 1–10. doi:10.1115/1.4039577.
  • JR Thunes, S Pal, RN Fortunato, JA Phillippi, TG Gleason, DA Vorp, S Maiti, A structural finite element model for lamellar unit of aortic media indicates heterogeneous stress field after collagen recruitment, J Biomech, 49(9), 2016, p 1562-1569, http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jbiomech.2016.03.034.
  • Sang, C., Maiti, S., Fortunato, R., Kofler, J., Robertson, A.M., 2018. A Uniaxial Testing Approach for Consistent Failure in Vascular Tissues. Journal of Biomechanical Engineering 140, 1–10. doi:10.1115/1.4039577
  • G. R., Rahul, Ramachandran, H. S., Fortunato, Ronald, et al., 2018 Necking and drawing of rubber-plastic bilayer laminates. Soft Matter, 14(24), p. 4977-4986 DOI:10.1039/C8SM00684A

Conferences:

  • RN Fortunato, C Sang, AM Robertson, S Maiti, Failure Biomechanics of Arterial Tissue. McGowan Institute - 2019 Scientific Retreat, Pittsburgh, PA. Poster Presentation.
  • RN Fortunato, C Sang, S Maiti, AM Robertson, In Silico Analysis of the Failure of Uniaxial Testing Specimens. ASME IMECE2018-88381, Pittsburgh, PA. Poster Presentation.
  • RN Fortunato, C Sang, AM Robertson, S Maiti, Computational modeling of arterial wall tissue to quantify uniaxial tissue failure properties. University of Pittsburgh Brain Institute Brain Day, 2018, Pittsburgh, PA. Poster Presentation.
  • RN Fortunato, C Sang, AM Robertson, S Maiti, Computational modeling of arterial wall tissue to quantify uniaxial tissue failure properties. Carnegie Mellon Forum on Biomedical Engineering, 2018, Pittsburgh, PA. Poster Presentation.
  • AM Robertson, X Duan, S Maiti, JR Thunes, P Gade, K Aziz, JR Cebral, J Frösen, R Tulamo, R Fortunato, F Charbel, S Amin-Hanjani, Role of Calcification in Aneurysm Failure- A Case Study, 5th International Conference on Computational and Mathematical Biomedical Engineering - CMBE2017, 2017, Pittsburgh, PA.
  • RN Fortunato, C Sang, AM Robertson, S Maiti, Computational Study of Uniaxial Tension Testing Grips for Soft Tissues, 5th International Conference on Computational and Mathematical Biomedical Engineering - CMBE2017, 2017, Pittsburgh, PA.
  • RN Fortunato, C Sang, AM Robertson, S Maiti, Computational Study Of Uniaxial Tension Testing Of Small Soft Tissue Specimen. Poster Presentation at the University of Pittsburgh Brain Institute Brain Day, 2017, Pittsburgh, PA.