A three-dimensional constitutive relation for passive cardiac tissue is formulated in terms of a structurally motivated pseudostrain-energy function, W, while the mathematical simplicity of phenomenological approaches is preserved. A specific functional form of W is proposed on the basis of limited structural information and multiaxial experimental data. The material parameters are determined in a least-squared sense from both uniaxial and biaxial data. Our results suggest that (1) multiaxially-loaded cardiac tissue is nearly transversely-isotropic with respect to local muscle fiber directions, at least for a limited range of strain histories, (2) material parameters determined from uniaxial papillary muscle data result in gross underestimates of the stresses in multiaxially-loaded specimens, and (3) material parameters determined from equibiaxial tests predict the behavior of the tissue under various nonequibiaxial stretching protocols reasonably well.

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