What is the central question of this study? What impact does inspiratory muscle training have on systemic vascular resistance, cardiac output and baroreflex sensitivity in adult men and women? What is the main finding and its importance? Inspiratory muscle training exerts favorable effects on blood pressure, vascular resistance and perception of stress. This exercise format is well-tolerated and equally effective whether implemented in men or women.
Historically, respiratory-related research in sleep apnea has focused exclusively on the extrinsic tongue muscles (i.e., genioglossus, hyoglossus, and styloglossus). Until recently, the respiratory control and function of intrinsic tongue muscles (i.e., inferior and superior longitudinalis, transverses, and verticalis), which comprise the bulk of the tongue, were unknown.
Our hypothesis was that the simultaneous activation of tongue protrudor and retractor muscles (co-activation) would constrict and stiffen the pharyngeal airway more than the independent activation of tongue protrudor muscles. Upper airway stiffness was determined by injecting known volumes of air into the sealed pharyngeal airway of the anaesthetized rat while measuring nasal pressure under control (no-stimulus) and stimulus conditions (volume paired with hypoglossal (XII) nerve stimulation). Stimulation of the whole XII nerves (co-activation) or the medial XII branches (protrudor activation) effected similar increases in total pharyngeal airway stiffness. Importantly, co-activation produced volume compression (airway narrowing) at large airway volumes (P
Output from the primary motor cortex contains oscillations that can have frequency-specific effects on the firing of motoneurons (MNs). Whereas much is known about the effects of oscillatory cortical drive on the output of spinal MN pools, considerably less is known about the effects on cranial motor nuclei, which govern speech/oromotor control. Here, we investigated cortical input to one such motor pool, the hypoglossal motor nucleus (HMN), which controls muscles of the tongue. We recorded intramuscular genioglossus electromyogram (EMG) and scalp EEG from healthy adult subjects performing a tongue protrusion task. Cortical entrainment of HMN population activity was assessed by measuring coherence between EEG and multiunit EMG activity. In addition, cortical entrainment of individual MN firing activity was assessed by measuring phase locking between single motor unit (SMU) action potentials and EEG oscillations. We found that cortical entrainment of multiunit activity was detectable within the 15- to 40-Hz frequency range but was inconsistent across recordings. By comparison, cortical entrainment of SMU spike timing was reliable within the same frequency range. Furthermore, this effect was found to be intermittent over time. Our study represents an important step in understanding corticomuscular synchronization in the context of human oromotor control and is the first study to document SMU entrainment by cortical oscillations in vivo.