Professor Itsu Sen (Yi Qian)

Professor Itsu SenProfessor in Biomechanics

The Australian School of Advanced Medicine, Macquarie University
BS ME PhD (Tokyo)

Contact Details

The Australian School of Advanced Medicine
2 Technology Place, Macquarie University NSW 2109, Australia

Tel: +61 (0)2 9812 3551
Fax: +61 (0)2 9812 3600
Email: or

Professional Overview

Prof. Sen (Qian) has 30 years continuous experience in computational fluid dynamics (CFD) research and application in bioengineering. He has worked in the field of circulatory assist and was instrumental in the development of the artificial heart program in Japan and in Australia. (Left Ventricular Assist Device, LVAD). He primarily developed the CFD technique which was employed for blood pump design. He used computational haemodynamic techniques to improve the problems related to haemolysis of the VentrAssit artificial heart which has been implanted in over 450 patients around world. He also has developed novel methodologies based on the CFD techniques for improvement cardiovascular and cerebrovascular surgical method, and estimation the risk of cerebral aneurysms. The system has been applied for over 300 patients, and validated by the results from in-vitro and in-vivo. He has more than 10 years work experience in global industry and has worked for eight universities in three different countries.

He has published and presented his research in Stroke, American Association of Neurological Surgeons (AANS), and American Society of Neuroradiology (ASNR). He has set up global collaborative links with biomedical engineers, neurosurgeons, cardiovascular surgeons and neuroradiologists in Australia, USA, Japan and China. Prof. Qian published over 50 peer reviewed articles and is a referee for many international journals including; Stroke, AJNR, ASME, and International Journal of Artificial Organs etc.

Areas of Research Interest

  1. Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD)
  2. Cerebral vascular and cardiovascular haemodynamics research.
  3. Engineering-based surgical training
  4. Medical imaging and molecular imaging.
  5. Heart assistant device (Artificial heart) and endovascular treatment devices R&D
  6. Intracranial aneurysm molecular features and biomarkers

Cerebral vascular haemodynamics research. The biomechanical group is to be equipped by five high performance workstations, in order to perform patient-specific cerebrovascular blood simulation. Research projects are to be aimed at assisting vascular surgeons in the management, treatment, and risk estimation of cerebrovascular aneurysms.

Cardiovascular haemodynamics research: Patient-specific haemodynamic technologies have also been developed to simulate cardiovascular diseases. This aims to provide a virtual surgical environment for cardiovascular surgeons. Moreover, the group is aiming to develop a ventricular assistance device or artificial heart, used to partially or completely replace the function of the failing heart.

Haemodynamic in-vitro validation tests: Facilities are equipped with mock circulation systems with cardiovascular modelling technology to perform simulations of cerebrovascular and cardiovascular circulation.

Medical image segmentation: A series of medical image segmentation software technologies have been developed. This system will enable the provision of intelligent medical-image segmentations for the vascular system, and serve as a training tool for both radiologists and surgeons alike.

Neurosurgery and cardiovascular training program: The aims of the project are to provide specialised training tools based on advanced robotic technologies for implementation by cardiovascular and neurosurgeons

Heart assistant device (Artificial heart) and medical device R&D: The project aims to introduce computational hemodynamic technology to improve the problem in blood pump suspension technology. The group is also cooperating with multi-international medical device companies to research and develop medical devices; e.g. artificial heart, cardiovascular and cerebrovascular stents, artery graft R&D, and medical image software development etc.

Intracranial aneurysm molecular and biomarker: the project is to investigate pathophysiology of intracranial aneurysms, an abnormal bulging of cerebral arteries, specifically investigate various cellular and molecular basis which make cerebral arteries prone to mechanical weakness, leading to initiation and progression of aneurysms using animal models, and to evaluate the association between cerebrovascular remodeling, hemodynamic factors and biomarkers.

Grants (CI, 2010-)

  • 2011-2013, ARC Discovery, Mechanisms of initiation and remodeling of intracranial aneurysms: a synthesis of haemodynamics and molecular biomarkers.
  • 2010-2013, ARC Linkage, Computational haemodynamics system for prediction of risk of rupture of cerebral aneurysms.
  • 2010-2013, Japan Society for the Promotion of Science (JSPS), Development of an aneurysm rupture estimation system associated with an accurate vessel thickness measurement technology.
  • 2011-2013,JSPS, The criteria for adulthood Tetralogy of Fallot (TF) surgical treatment based on Ultrasound MRI and hemodynamic simulation technology.
  • 2011-2013, JSPS, Using a physiologic blood simulation system to optimize pediatric complex cardiac anomaly surgery.
  • 2011-2013, JSPS, Three-branch stent graft development basing on computational fluid dynamics.
  • 2008-2011, Ministry of Health, Labour and Welfare, Dry lab cardiovascular surgery training system (Engineering based medicine).
  • 2009-2010 JSPS, Computational Hemodynamic Analysis in Congenital Heart Disease; : Simulation of the Norwood Procedure
  • 2008-2012, Chinese Ministry of Science and Technology, Development of new generation artificial heart.

Five Selected Publications 

  1. CJ Lee, Y Zhang, H Takao, Y Murayama, Y Qian, A fluid-structure interaction study using patient-specific ruptured and unruptured aneurysm: The effect of aneurysm morphology, hypertension and elasticity, Journal of Biomechanics, 46 (2013) 2402-2410.
  2. S F Sia, Y Qian, Y Zhang, M K Morgan, Mean Arterial Pressure Required for Intracranial Bypass Grafts: An Investigation with Computational Hemodynamic Models, Neurosurgery, 2012 Oct;71(4):826-31.
  3. H Takao, Y Murayama, S Otsuka, Y Qian, et al, Hemodynamic differences between unruptured and ruptured intracranial aneurysms during observation, Stroke, 43: 1436-9, 2012.
  4. Y Qian, H. Takao, M. Umezu and Y. Murayama, Risk Analysis of Unruptured Aneurysms Using Computed Fluid Dynamics Technology: Preliminary Results, AJNR Am J Neuroradiol. Nov-Dec; 32(10):1948-55, 2011.
  5. Y Qian, J L Liu, K Itatani, K Miyaji and M Umezu, Computational Hemodynamic Analysis in Congenital Heart Disease: Simulation of the Norwood Procedure, Annals of Biomedical Engineering Vol 38, No 7, 2302-2313, 2010.

External Appointments and Awards

Visiting Professor in Centre of Biomedical Sciences, Waseda University
Visiting Distinguish Professor in the Department of Neurosurgery, Second Military Medical University-Affiliated Changhai Hospital
Visiting Professor in the Department of Cardiothoracic Surgery, Shanghai Jiao Tong University School of Medicine-Affiliated Shanghai Children's Medical Centre

Research Team

David Verrelli, PhD, Research Fellow (Haemodynamics, Engineering-based medicine)
Mitsuo Umezu
, PhD MD, Visiting Professor (Biomedical engineering)
Winston Chong, MD, Clinical Associate Professor (Neuroradiology)
Srinivas Karkenahalli, PhD, Visiting Senior Lecturer (CFD)
Wenjing Zhang
, MD, Visiting Scholar (Chinese traditional medicine)
Yan Chen, MD, Visiting Scholar (Neurosurgery)