Department of Pediatrics / Neonatology and Neurosciences
Case Western Reserve University
11100 Euclid Ave
My laboratory is primarily interested in the generation and modulation of respiratory rhythm in the mammalian central nervous system. The questions we seek to answer are: How does the brain generate the drive for breathing? How is breathing pattern modulated by reflexes and chemosensation? What are the neural pathways involved in breathing? What are the biophysical properties of cells involved in breathing? How does respiratory drive change as we age?
We use electrophysiology techniques (extracellular single-unit recording, whole cell patch-clamp, electrochemistry) and fluorescence imaging (calcium indicators, pH sensitive dyes) to explore the dynamic relationship between cells that are phasically active during breathing. Our chief animal model is the developing rat but we also use mice to explore genetic variability in the respiratory neural substrate. Recently we have embarked on a series of experiments designed to quantify how neurons and astrocytes communicate with each other to modulate respiration as we age.