Autoregressive spectral analysis of phrenic neurogram during eupnea and gasping

Metin Akay, Joseph E. Melton, Walter Welkowitz, Norman H. Edelman, Judith A. Neubauer

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17 Scopus citations


During hypoxic gasping, the phrenic neurogram (PN) has a steeper rate of rise, an augmented amplitude, and a shorter duration than is seen during eupnea. Because hypoxia reduces neuronal activity, we hypothesized that gasping would be characterized in the frequency domain by enhanced low- frequency power compared with eupnea. Autoregressive (AR) spectral analysis of the PN in chloralose-anesthetized, vagotomized, peripherally chemodenervated cats was performed during eupnea and hypoxic gasping. During eupnea, significant spectral peaks were seen at 41 ± 2 and 93 ± 2 (SE) Hz. In all cats, the 41-Hz spectral peak disappeared during hypoxic gasping and was replaced by a high-power, low-frequency peak at 26 ± 1 Hz. No consistent change in the frequency or power of the high-frequency spectral peak was seen during gasping. To determine whether changes in the AR spectrum of the PN during gasping result from augmented respiratory output, we compared the AR spectra of the PN during gasping, hypercapnia (end-tidal CO2 fraction = 0.09) and carotid sinus nerve stimulation. Unlike during gasping, there was no shift in power toward lower frequencies during hypercapnia and carotid sinus nerve stimulation. We conclude that the spectral characteristics of gasping, loss of the medium-frequency peak and the appearance of low- frequency (<30-Hz) power, are unique to this respiratory pattern.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)530-540
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of applied physiology
Issue number2
StatePublished - Aug 1996

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Physiology
  • Physiology (medical)


  • autoresuscitation
  • brain hypoxia
  • carotid sinus nerve stimulation
  • hypercapnia
  • respiration


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