Effect of expiratory loading on expiratory duration and pulmonary stretch receptor discharge

Davenport, P.W.; Wozniak, J.A.

Journal of Applied Physiology 61(5): 1857-1863


ISSN/ISBN: 8750-7587
PMID: 3781994
DOI: 10.1152/jappl.1986.61.5.1857
Accession: 005238091

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Slowly adapting pulmonary stretch receptors have been hypothesized to be the afferents mediating the vagally dependent, volume-related prolongation of expiratory time (TE) during expiratory loading. It has been further suggested that the vagal component of this prolongation of TE is due to the temporal summation of pulmonary stretch receptor (PSR) activity during expiratory loading. This hypothesis was tested in rabbits exposed to resistive and elastic single-breath expiratory loading while PSR's were simultaneously recorded. Both types of loads resulted in a decreased expired volume (VE) and increased expiratory duration (TE). The TE for resistive loads were significantly greater than for elastic loads for equivalent VE. Thus two different VE-TE relationships were found for resistive and elastic loads. When TE was plotted against the area under the expired volume trajectory, a single linear relationship was observed. PSR activity recorded during expiratory loading increased as VE decreased and TE increased. A single linear relationship resulted when the number of PSR spikes during the expiration was plotted against the associated TE for all types of loads. These findings demonstrate that the volume-related prolongation of TE with single-breath expiratory loads is associated with an increase in PSR discharge. These results support the hypothesis that the vagal component of load-dependent prolongation of TE is a function of both the temporal and spatial summation of PSR activity during the expiratory phase.