Mountain Lab: studying the effects of stress and extreme conditions on human physiology

Mountain Lab: studying the effects of stress and extreme conditions on human physiology

A special webinar on the effects of tilt, exercise and high altitude on human cardiorespiratory and autonomic nervous systems, as studied in lab and at Everest Base Camp.

The human body is an amazingly complicated machine, capable of adapting and responding to various stressors and environmental conditions.  Even in extreme situations the body is able to adjust core physiological processes and systems to ensure optimal function, and ultimately, survival.  When studying human physiological response the most basic measurements, such as ECG and respiration, can hold huge amounts of information.  But, their value is much greater when integrated with other physiological measurements such as blood pressure, oxygen saturation and respiratory gas concentrations.

However, accurate co-registration of physiological data is no trivial pursuit. Moreover, the complexity of such research endeavors is compounded when we venture out of traditional laboratory spaces and seek to study human response and adaptation in extreme environments.  Sensors and systems must offer practical application and reliable data collection — moreover, data storage and management is of critical importance. 

In this webinar sponsored by ADInstruments, Dr. Trevor Day, Associate Professor of Physiology at Mount Royal University in Calgary Alberta, shares his research on the effects of tilt, exercise and high altitude on respiratory sinus arrhythmia (RSA).  These case studies serve as representations of more complex applications of human physiologic monitoring, in particular, his trek to Everest Base Camp where he and his research team monitored and tracked acclimatization in the context of high altitude hypoxia. During this expedition multiple physiological measures were recorded simultaneously on both rest and exercise days in order to test for signs of altitude sickness. Dr. Day shares his experiences from this exciting study and others conducted at his lab at Mount Royal to offer perspective regarding the importance of being able to record and integrate multiple data streams simultaneously.

If you would like to learn more about Dr. Trevor Day and his research, check out ADInstruments recent Science Heroes feature on him for more videos, photos and an account of his recent expedition to Mount Everest Base Camp. Discover More

Key topics covered during this webinar included…

  • Recording high quality physiological data in the lab as well as in extreme environments
  • Integrating and syncing a number of different physiological recordings
  • Performing advanced Heart Rate Variability (HRV) analysis on large sets of data
  • Finding relationships between different signals recorded on the same time base
  • Insights into the practicality of running a scientific study up Mt Everest

Click to watch the webinar recording. To view the presentation full screen simply click the square icon located in the bottom-right corner of the video-viewer.

To download a PDF copy of the presentation, click on the “LinkedIn SlideShare” icon located in the bottom-right corner of the slide-viewer. From the SlideShare landing page click the “Download” button to retrieve the file.

Trevor Day, PhD

Associate Professor,
Department of Biology,
Mount Royal University

Trevor Day is a cardiorespiratory researcher at Mt Royal University, Canada.

His areas of research include respiratory chemosensitivity and the body’s response to environmental stressors, particularly high altitude hypoxia. Dr. Day has a strong interest in science communication to the public and is a passionate teacher of physiology, for which he has been recognized with numerous awards. Website

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