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Respiratory physiology, human performance and health

Ongoing

Project description

The overall aim of this research project is to address novel aspects of integration between respiratory function and human performance and health.  Specific aims are: 1) to develop a novel method of evaluating the contractile properties of the human diaphragm and to determine the role these properties may play in the loss of respiratory muscle function with fatigue in young and older adults; 2) to explore maladaptation of the respiratory system in response to heat stress and dehydration in young and older adults; and 3) to evaluate generic exercise-based rehabilitation for chronic breathlessness and to provide exploratory data on the feasibility and acceptability of a state of the art decision making tool where patients exercise at home in a virtual group supported by an “exercise-avatar”. 

The impact of the research is wide ranging and long lasting, with the potential to make a difference to the lives of elderly people and clinical populations, including patients with COPD, heart failure and asthma.