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Influence of graviceptor stimulation initiated by off-vertical axis rotation on ventilation

Abstract : It has been suggested that the otolith system is involved in the physiological response to changes in body orientation with respect to gravity. In studies on animals, an otolith–respiratory reflex has been observed, but data on humans are scarce and inconclusive, mainly because pure otolithic stimulation is difficult to produce in humans. To assess the otolithic–respiratory reflex in humans, we used an off-vertical axis rotation (OVAR) that produces periodic and pure stimulation of graviceptors. The inspiratory flow was measured during earth vertical axis rotation (EVAR, control conditions) and OVAR in 21 subjects. To distinguish the effects of the labyrinthine and non-labyrinthine graviceptors on ventilation, these measurements were repeated with two different static head positions: head turned leftward and rightward in yaw. The velocity of rotation was individually selected to match spontaneous breathing rate (mean 11.4 cycles min−1, 0.19 Hz). Average ventilatory flow was higher in OVAR than in EVAR, as was tidal volume. In OVAR, the transition between inspiration and expiration occurred mainly in the forward pitch position. The phase of this transition in most subjects was driven mostly by the body position rather than by the head position, suggesting that respiratory modifications during OVAR mainly involved non-labyrinthine receptors. However, the study demonstrated a high intersubject variability both in the ability of OVAR to synchronize breathing and in the influence of labyrinthine stimulation. We conclude that the respiratory response to changes in orientation of the body with respect to the vertical involves labyrinthine and non-labyrinthine stimulation, with the gain of each signal varying individually.
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Submitted on : Thursday, October 3, 2019 - 4:03:03 PM
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O. Kuldavletova, S. Marie, P. Denise, H. Normand. Influence of graviceptor stimulation initiated by off-vertical axis rotation on ventilation. Experimental Physiology, Wiley-Blackwell, 2018, 103 (7), pp.1010-1019. ⟨10.1113/EP087035⟩. ⟨hal-02304966⟩



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