Valerie Henry


The first portion of the project deals with creating three-dimensional computer generated models for the use in lung/particle studies. The models are to be proportional, to scale, and representative of the real structures. The models were created using Autodesk Maya 2008. The structures created are cross-sections of an alveolar epithelium and a capillary endothelium as they are found on either side of the respiratory basement membrane, and two alveoli with the septa! wall between. The models of the cellular cross-section include the cytoskeletal components, vesicles, and cellular membrane. The filaments of the cytoskeleton (microfilament, intermediate filament, microtubule) have been made using protein models retrieved from the Protein Data Bank and linked into protein filaments and weaved into the network that represents the cytoskeleton. The alveolar model was created from various images (SEM and TEM) and researched values.

The second portion of the project deals with creating an instructional animation with the structures used in the lung research. The animation is designed to show the movement of the particles as they pass through the human airway down to the cellular level and into the blood stream. As the particles progress through the system, I have animated their deposition based on research. Particle dynamics was used in Maya to animate the deposition. The animation will be used to visually illustrate the findings from Dr. Risa Robinson's research team and will be a helpful tool when presenting the data to their peers, either in a conference or for grant proposals.

Library of Congress Subject Headings

Lungs--Models; Atmospheric deposition--Physiological effect--Simulation methods; Computer animation

Publication Date


Document Type


Student Type


Degree Name

Medical Illustration(MFA)

Department, Program, or Center

Medical Illustration (CHST)


Glen Hintz

Advisor/Committee Member

Risa Robinson

Advisor/Committee Member

Jim Perkins


Physical copy available from RIT's Wallace Library at QP121 .H46 2009


RIT – Main Campus