Projects / Programmes source: ARIS

Nervous control and neurological disorders of breathing

Research activity

Code Science Field Subfield
3.03.00  Medical sciences  Neurobiology   

Code Science Field
B640  Biomedical sciences  Neurology, neuropsychology, neurophysiology 

Code Science Field
3.02  Medical and Health Sciences  Clinical medicine 
respiratory disorders, neural control of respiration, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, obstructive sleep apnea syndrome
Evaluation (rules)
source: COBISS
Researchers (27)
no. Code Name and surname Research area Role Period No. of publicationsNo. of publications
1.  06868  PhD Dušan Butinar  Neurobiology  Researcher  2011 - 2013  124 
2.  30960  PhD Anja Čuš  Neurobiology  Junior researcher  2013 - 2014  33 
3.  15400  PhD Leja Dolenc Grošelj  Neurobiology  Researcher  2011 - 2014  526 
4.  16048  PhD Igor Fajdiga  Oncology  Researcher  2011 - 2013  113 
5.  30089  Boštjan Kastelic    Technical associate  2011 - 2014 
6.  24233  Polonca Klinar    Technical associate  2011 - 2014  13 
7.  27887  PhD Aleš Koren  Public health (occupational safety)  Researcher  2011 - 2013  38 
8.  21239  PhD Blaž Koritnik  Medical sciences  Researcher  2011 - 2014  275 
9.  19207  PhD Marko Korošec  Neurobiology  Researcher  2011 - 2014  37 
10.  15121  PhD Lea Leonardis  Neurobiology  Researcher  2014  211 
11.  01947  PhD Marjan Mihelin  Neurobiology  Researcher  2011 - 2013  68 
12.  33339  PhD Gregor Omejec  Neurobiology  Junior researcher  2013 - 2014  172 
13.  14502  PhD Simon Podnar  Neurobiology  Head  2011 - 2014  402 
14.  16365  PhD Janja Pretnar Oblak  Neurobiology  Researcher  2014  372 
15.  12149  PhD Zoran Rodi  Neurobiology  Researcher  2011 - 2014  105 
16.  32744  Bojan Romih    Technical associate  2011 - 2014 
17.  23432  PhD Melita Rotar  Neurobiology  Researcher  2011 - 2014  38 
18.  17674  Irena Štefe    Technical associate  2011 - 2014 
19.  26487  PhD Vita Štukovnik  Psychology  Researcher  2011 - 2012  141 
20.  06661  PhD Marjeta Terčelj Zorman  Microbiology and immunology  Researcher  2011 - 2014  414 
21.  00341  PhD Jože Trontelj  Neurobiology  Researcher  2011 - 2013  516 
22.  12789  PhD Jagoda Vatovec Robida  Public health (occupational safety)  Researcher  2011 - 2012  147 
23.  33342  PhD Judita Vidmar  Neurobiology  Junior researcher  2013 - 2014  37 
24.  07476  PhD David Božidar Vodušek  Neurobiology  Researcher  2011 - 2014  470 
25.  11736  Ignac Zidar  Neurobiology  Technical associate  2011 - 2014  37 
26.  08780  PhD Janez Zidar  Neurobiology  Researcher  2011 - 2014  407 
27.  07032  PhD Tomaž Žgur  Neurobiology  Researcher  2011 - 2014  53 
Organisations (1)
no. Code Research organisation City Registration number No. of publicationsNo. of publications
1.  0312  University Medical Centre Ljubljana  Ljubljana  5057272000  77,904 
2. Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) is a progressive neurodegenerative disease that affects upper and lower motor neurons (UMN, LMN) and thus impairs movement dexterity and causes muscle weakness. Respiratory insufficiency is generally attributed to the LMN lesion. Possible contribution of the UMNs to it is not known. They are active only during breath holding, speech, but not during quiet automatic breathing. Expiration is mostly passive, muscles being activated only during strong reflex or voluntary exhalations. There is no validated method for the assessment of the UMN function in respiration. Our aim is to explore whether the so called movement-related cortical potentials can be used as such. They precede the onset of self-paced movements, reflect functioning of the cortical motor areas, and are generated by the pyramidal cortical neurones that are affected by ALS.   We will study healthy subjects and ALS patients. They will be assessed clinically and by inspiration-, expiration- and finger flexion-related cortical potentials. We shall use sniffing and expirations through the nose because nasal pressures are known to correlate well with the decline in the respiratory muscle strength. 3. Conduction studies in the phrenic nerves are used in patients in whom the respiratory complaints are thought to be due to the peripheral nervous system disease. In our EMG laboratory such studies were standardized. Normative values of the parameters used in the studies were obtained. In our routine EMG practice we aim to differentiate between the patients with respiratory insufficiency in whom the cause is neuromuscular dysfunction and those in whom it is not. The proposed project will concentrate on the later group of patients in order investigate whether the primary pulmonary pathology may cause any secondary neuromuscular affection. We have chosen patients with the chronic obstructive pulmonary disease as their diaphragms are exposed to the rather pronounced and long lasting work load, what may possibly affect their functioning. There is no published literature on this. 4. Obstructive sleep apneas (OSAS) are short breathing stops during sleep, and are frequently found in adults. OSAS presents risk factor for cardiovascular disorders, accidents and sudden death. SOAS is the consequence of blockade in upper airway. Electromyography (EMG) of upper airway muscles has shown that muscle activity is diminished during sleep. Some studies suggest miopathic, while other neuropathic changes. The purpose of our study is to explore genioglossus muscle in OSA patients. The quantitative EMG of different muscles will be used (geniogglosus, vastus lateralis). As OSAS diagnosis can only be made by night polysomnography, all patients will be diagnosed with the classical PSG. Computer flow analysis will be used on the basis of computer tomography and will help us for dynamic model of breathing disorder during sleep. The results of this dynamic model are important for better understanding of the disease and planning of the therapy and future preventive procedures.
Significance for science
Breathing disorders (in sleep and/or in wakefulness) have been demonstrated as symptoms as well as - in other cases - causes of various pathologic conditions. Being a serious threat to health and/or well-being of an individual human being as well as society, breathing disorders have attracted much attention of their researchers. Excessive daytime sleepiness either caused by sleep disorders-related sleeplessness or by other pathology has been recognized as the cause of many accidents at work and in traffic. With the project, we have introduced innovative approach to the research on sleep in health and disease and, more importantly, contributed to international professional community our own results and knowledge of physiology and pathophysiolgy of sleep.
Significance for the country
Reports on our research project have attracted international attention and thus joined Slovenia to the countries that are leading in this research field. International co-operation has been started, aiming at gathering new basic as well as applicable knowledge on sleep which is expected to result also in better and more efficient treatment of sleep disorders.
Most important scientific results Annual report 2011, 2012, 2013, final report, complete report on dLib.si
Most important socioeconomically and culturally relevant results Annual report 2011, 2012, 2013, final report, complete report on dLib.si
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