The mechanical behavior of tissues is critically dependent on the organization and composition of the extracellular matrix (ECM). In many tissues, the primary load-bearing component is fibrillar collagen, which is arranged into larger fiber bundles or fibrous networks depending on the specific tissue. This microstructural arrangement distributes and accommodates tissue-level loading and allows the tissue to function mechanically. Consequently, when collagen fibers are damaged, either through injury or disease, the distribution of load within the tissue changes, which can alter cell activity, mechanical behavior, and tissue function. This damage process underlies many physical ailments, but it remains poorly understood in part because of the difficulty relating macroscopic load to microsctructural alterations. To understand better local fiber failure and accompanying global restructuring, we have incorporated fiber damage from excessive force into our multiscale-modeling framework [1,2].

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