Medical College of Wisconsin
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Central nervous system mechanisms of ventilatory acclimatization to hypoxia. Respir Physiol 2000 Jul;121(2-3):223-36 PMID: 10963777

Pubmed ID



Ventilatory acclimatization to hypoxia is the time-dependent increase in ventilation that occurs with chronic exposure to hypoxia. Despite decades of research, the physiological mechanisms that increase the hypoxic ventilatory response during chronic hypoxia are not well understood. This review focuses on adaptations within the central nervous system (CNS) that increase the hypoxic ventilatory response. Although an increase in CNS responsiveness had been proposed many years ago, only recently has strong experimental evidence been provided for an increase in the CNS gain in the rat, which has proved to be a good model of VAH in humans. Within the CNS, several neuroanatomical sites could be involved as well as changes in various neurotransmitters, neuromodulators or signalling mechanisms within any of those sites. Lastly, adaptations within the CNS could involve both direct effects of decreased P(O(2)) and indirect effects of increased afferent nerve activity due to chronic stimulation of the peripheral arterial chemoreceptors.

Author List

Powell FL, Huey KA, Dwinell MR


Melinda R. Dwinell PhD Center Associate Director, Associate Professor in the Physiology department at Medical College of Wisconsin


2-s2.0-0033837261   59 Citations

MESH terms used to index this publication - Major topics in bold

Central Nervous System
Chronic Disease
Models, Neurological
Neurotransmitter Agents
Respiratory Physiological Phenomena
Signal Transduction
jenkins-FCD Prod-331 a335b1a6d1e9c32173c9534e6f6ff51494143916