The bulletin of mathematical biophysics

, Volume 16, Issue 1, pp 59–74 | Cite as

Optimal systems: I. The vascular system

  • David L. Cohn


An approach to quantitative work on optimal systems is considered. Desired optimal principles are utilized in constructing a hypothetical system similar to the organ system considered. A comparison of this constructed system with the anatomical system then gives an indication of the importance of the optimal principles in the form or function of the organ system considered.

These ideas are applied to the mammalian vascular system, and limiting values are obtained for some of its important component parts. The constructed system gives good agreement with anatomical data for vessel radii, lengths, and hydrodynamic resistance to flow.


Vascular System Optimal System Total Resistance Optimal Principle Small Cube 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© Univerisity of Chicago 1954

Authors and Affiliations

  • David L. Cohn
    • 1
  1. 1.Committee on Mathematical BiologyThe University of ChicagoChicagoUSA

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