Reflex Responses to Intermittent Hypoxia in Humans


About this study

Sleep apnea is the most common form of sleep disordered breathing and patients with sleep apnea exhibit persistent activation of the sympathetic nervous system.  Sympathoexcitation is also the final common pathway for complications in conditions like obesity, hypertension, sleep apnea, and heart failure and plays a significant role in predicting negative clinical outcomes. However, the mechanisms of sympathoexcitation with sleep apnea are poorly understood and thus make effective therapeutic approaches difficult to develop. Intermittent hypoxia (IH) has been implicated in animal models as the primary stimulus for evoking increases in sympathetic activity with recurrent apneas. The overall goal of this application is to better understand the effect of IH on sympathetic discharge patterns in humans as well as the mechanisms mediating persistent sympathoexcitation with IH.  

Participation eligibility

Participant eligibility includes age, gender, type and stage of disease, and previous treatments or health concerns. Guidelines differ from study to study, and identify who can or cannot participate. There is no guarantee that every individual who qualifies and wants to participate in a trial will be enrolled. Contact the study team to discuss study eligibility and potential participation.

Inclusion Criteria:

  • 18-45 years of age
  • BMI <30 kg/m2
  • Healthy (no acute or chronic conditions)
  • Non-pregnant
  • Non-breastfeeding
  • Non-smokers
  • Taking no medications (except birth control or at the discretion of the principle investigator)

Exclusion Criteria:

  • Not meeting above criteria

Participating Mayo Clinic locations

Study statuses change often. Please contact the study team for the most up-to-date information regarding possible participation.

Mayo Clinic Location Status

Rochester, Minn.

Mayo Clinic principal investigator

Michael Joyner, M.D.

Closed for enrollment

More information


Publications are currently not available

Mayo Clinic Footer