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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

Effect of hypoxia on ventilatory and arousal responses to CO2 during NREM sleep with and without flurazepam in young adults.

We examined the ventilatory response to CO2 at two levels of oxygenation during wakefulness and sleep in healthy young adults before and after the ingestion of a single dose of 30 mg flurazepam. Progressive hypercapnia was produced at two levels of arterial O2 saturation (greater than 99 and 87%) by having subjects re-breathe from a tight-fitting face mask and a reservoir bag containing gas mixtures with two different O2 concentrations. Ventilation was measured with an inductive plethysmograph. O2 saturation was measured with an ear oximeter. Sleep was monitored using standard techniques by recording the electroencephalogram, eye movements, and chin electromyogram. During wakefulness, hypoxia increased the slope of the ventilatory response to CO2 and shifted the response slightly to the left. NREM sleep lowered the slope of the CO2 response under both hyperoxic and hypoxic conditions. The slope of the hyperoxic CO2 response curve was not affected by flurazepam during wakefulness or sleep. After administration of flurazepam to the subjects, the shift of the CO2 response curve to the left produced by hypoxia (additive effect) during NREM sleep was slightly less as compared to control, but hypoxia still increased the slope of the CO2 ventilatory response. During hypoxic hypercapnia, the PCO2 at arousal from sleep was significantly lower than during hyperoxic hypercapnia, but the level of ventilation at arousal during hypercapnia was similar in the control condition and after flurazepam. We conclude that (a) both natural and flurazepam-induced sleep depress ventilatory responses to hyperoxic and hypoxic hypercapnia and alter, in a complex fashion, the effects of hypoxia and hypercapnia on ventilation; and (b) hypoxia and hypercapnia interact as arousal stimuli in both natural and flurazepam-induced sleep.[1]


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