Project: Research project

Project Details


Respiratory muscle fatigue and mechanical ventilator dependency
contribute significantly to the morbidity and mortality of patients
suffereing from chronic pulmonary disease. The diaphragm is the
principal muscle of inspiration and the only skeletal muscle
considered to be a vital organ. Yet, the adaptive capability of the
diaphragm to varying amounts of respiratory work has received
little investigative attention. The aim of this project will be to
define the biochemical characteristics and mechanisms by which
the rat diaphragm adapts to overuse and disuse; to determine if
the adaptation to disuse is preventable or reversible and to gain
new insight into the biochemical limitations responsible for
respiratory muscle fatigue and failure. This will be accomplished
employing experimental models already in use by this applicant.
Specifically, surgically implanted tracheal resistors are used to
study the diaphragm's response to endurance training and
prolonged mechanical ventilation is used to study the diaphragm's
response to disuse. The adaptive response of the diaphragm will
be analyzed using measurements of fiber type, contractility and
endurance as well as functional biochemical indices of whole
muscle and mitochondria oxidative capacity, Preliminary data
indicates that rat diaphragm muscle does adapt to resistance
training with hypertrophy and adapts to mechanical ventilation
with atrophy.
Effective start/end date12/31/898/31/93


  • Pulmonary and Respiratory Medicine


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