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Animal Physio Paper #2 Diving Reflex

Animal Physio Paper #2 Diving Reflex - Jasmin Sangha Biol...

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Jasmin Sangha November 13, 2007 Biol 482L: Animal Physiology Lab Report #3 Dr. Cohen Heart Rate of Humans during Submersion due to the Diving Reflex Abstract The diving reflex is a term used to describe when the body of most mammals goes in “oxygen saving mode” when it is submerged underwater. Once underwater, the body sends the oxygen that is stored to vital organs such as the brain and heart instead of other tissues and muscles. This experiment was tested on 30 subjects: 10 males and 20 females. Heart rates were taken in 4 different ways: at rest, holding the breath above the water, holding the breath submerged at 25°C and holding the breath submerged at 35°C. Theoretically the human heart rate lowers upon facial submersion in warm water. However, the observations proved the opposite to be true that heart rate lowered in cold water. Using plastic bins and sample group of college students, diving reflex was observed in different temperature water. These physiological effects observed can lead to helping near-drowning victims. Introduction Many mammals can remained submerged underwater for extended periods of time. The diving reflex is a term used to describe a state of alertness that the body is in due to the events of submersion. Once the body realizes that it is underwater, this occurring in most mammals including humans, it goes to a state of “oxygen save mode” where it maximizes the time spent underwater. The diving reflex also named the Diving Bradycardia (meaning a reduction is heart rate) utilizes all the oxygen that the body has and puts it to use at the most important parts of the body. During the “dive,” the body sends most of the oxygen that has been stored in hemoglobin and myoglobin to the most essential organs of the body like the heart and brain. The rest of the tissues and muscles must resort to anaerobic means of respiration especially during longer dives. Because less oxygen is used in the body and less is circulated around the body, less blood is needed to be pumped as well slowing down the heart rate. The blood that is rushed to the heart and brain also serves another purpose. Not only is it rushed to send oxygen to these vital organs, but it also is sent to protect the thoracic cavity, including the lungs from collapsing. The drop in heart rate is triggered on by the parasympathetic nervous system. High blood pressure is also a factor and due to peripheral vasoconstriction mediated by the sympathetic nervous system. The adaptive value of the diving reflex centers on the conservation of both oxygen and energy by reducing the
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energetically costly aerobic activity of the heart and the periphery. The diving reflex in mammals is mediated, in part, by receptors of the trigeminal nerve (cranial nerve V) in the face, nose and
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Animal Physio Paper #2 Diving Reflex - Jasmin Sangha Biol...

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