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Mechanical Properties of Human Dura Mater in Tension - An Analysis at an Age Range of 2 to 94 Years

: Zwirner, J.; Scholze, M.; Waddell, J.N.; Ondruschka, B.; Hammer, N.

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Scientific Reports 9 (2019), Art. 16655, 11 pp.
ISSN: 2045-2322
Journal Article, Electronic Publication
Fraunhofer IWU ()

Realistic human head models are of great interest in traumatic brain injury research and in the forensic pathology courtroom and teaching. Due to a lack of biomechanical data, the human dura mater is underrepresented in head models. This study provides tensile data of 73 fresh human cranial dura mater samples retrieved from an area between the anterior middle and the posterior middle meningeal artery. Tissues were adapted to their native water content using the osmotic stress technique. Tensile tests were conducted under quasi-static uniaxial testing conditions with simultaneous digital image correlation. Human temporal dura mater is mechanically highly variable with regards to its elastic modulus of 70 ± 44 MPa, tensile strength of 7 ± 4 MPa, and maximum strain of 11 ± 3 percent. Mechanical properties of the dura mater did not vary significantly between side nor sex and decreased with the age of the cadaver. Both elastic modulus and tensile strength appear to have constant mechanical parameters within the first 139 hours post mortem. The mechanical properties provided by this study can help to improve computational and physical human head models. These properties under quasi-static conditions do not require adjustments for side nor sex, whereas adjustments of tensile properties accompanied with normal aging may be of interest.