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    Muscle, energy, optimization

    Muscle, energy, optimization

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    Research project Muscle, energy, optimization


    Team: Dynamic and discrete events and Optimization


    Labeling: none

    Term: 15/12/2016 au 15/06/2018


    Funding: Atlanstic RFI 2020


    LARIS staff involved: Jean-Claude Jolly, Laurent Autrique


    Project partners:

    CHU d'Angers, UMR INSERM 1083 - CNRS 62141 (resp. scientifique : Pierre Abraham)

    University of West Bohemian in Pizen Czech Republic (Dr. Robert CIMRMAN)

    École des Arts et métiers d'Angers, LAMPA EA 1427 (Pr. Franck Morel)



    The purpose of this project is to establish a link between several fairly recent work on the biomechanical modeling of muscle [2] and the optimization of performance in endurance sport, namely running [3]. In reality it could be as well for cycling or kayaking, for example.

    These three sports are not mentioned by coincidence since the first develops particularly the calves, the second the thighs and the third the shoulders. This suggests that, schematically, in each of these three domains, an athlete is reduced to the corresponding muscle, the other muscles performing minimal coordination work. This crude model of sports "engine" must be completed by the "reservoirs" that constitute the lungs for oxygen supply, the liver for carbohydrate substrates and the fat for lipid substrates.

    Long-term work by physiologists [3] has demonstrated a good energy adequacy of this design with a conventional fluid exchange system between tanks. For example, Fig. 1, the reservoir P - like phospho-creatine - would be the place of the muscle and the reservoir O - as oxygen would be the place of the lungs and the outside air.

    In reality, the location identification suggested above has never been proven. It's a major lock. For example, which organ would perform the function of "tap" for T or R1 Fig.1? This question is the starting point of this project, with the assumption that these tap functions are actually provided through the membranes, pressures and flows prevailing in the muscle cell environment.

    A micro-biomechanical digital model of muscle (active fibers, passive fibers, matrix, kinetic theory of Huxley bridges) was developed in finite elements in [2], see Fig.2 which is extracted from it. By supplementing it with a vascular network it is a good basis to establish a link between the supply of oxygen and nutrients of the muscle and the mechanical work produced by this muscle.

    The previous modeling work becomes very important when linked to the search in [1] for optimal performance in endurance running. This work uses the optimal control based on an energy model of the type of flow exchange between tubs as described above. Realistic speed profiles are obtained. But the "taps", essential for this modeling, introduce parameters and assumptions that are detrimental to obtaining a model that is observable and measurable in practice.

    With the team's biology and sports medicine skills, this project aims to develop a digital muscle model in the two previous complementary directions: micro-biomechanical model and optimal performance control. However, with this project of priming type, it is not a question of obtaining complete results but of arriving at encouraging results that motivate and justify the continuation of a larger project. In particular, this project is not sized for the realization of the augmented micro-biomechanical muscle computer application as described above. It is a question of confirming its biomechanical relevance for the advanced objectives, to evaluate its IT feasibility and to set up the collaborations useful for the recovery of the existing version.

    [1] A. Aftalion, J.F. Bonnans, Optimization of running strategies based on anaerobic energy and variations of velocity, SIAM Journal on Applied Mathematics, 74 (2014), 1615-1636

    [2] H. Kockova, R. Cimrman, Implementation of skeletal muscle model with advanced activation control, Applied and Computational Mechanics, 3 (2009), 305-318

    [3] R.H. Morton, Modelling Human Power and Endurance, J. Math. Biol., 28 (1990), 49-64


    Contact : jean-claude.jolly @ univ-angers.fr