APS Annual Meeting at Experimental Biology

Diverse Models in Physiology: Unique Approaches to Studying Oxygen Transport in Hypoxic Environments

Symposium — Tuesday, April 5, 2022 — 3:30 PM - 5:00 PM — Convention Center, Room 201A
Environmental and Exercise Physiology Section — Chair: Philip Ainslie — Co-Chair: Paolo Dominelli

Nobel-prize winning physiologist August Krogh developed his now famous, “Krogh Principle,” stating
that “for many problems [in physiology and medicine], there is an animal on which that problem
can conveniently be studied.” This symposium will highlight some key examples of the need for a
“Modified Krogh Principle” - for every problem there is an animal or unique group of humans that
can be studied. Studying these unique ‘experiments of nature’ allow us to navigate the
fundamentals of physiology and identify some of the context-dependent physiological trade-offs
involved in maintaining oxygen delivery at rest and during exercise in during hypoxic challenges.
First, Dr. Catherine Ivy will provide a compelling insight into hypoxic adaptations of deer mice, a
species that have adapted to generations of living in high-altitude environments. Next, Dr. Chad
Wiggins will discuss oxygen delivery during rest and exercise in a group of patients with rare genetic
variations in their oxygen dissociation curves. Dr. Joshua Tremblay will then present findings from a
recent expedition to Peru on the hematological (mal)adaptations in human high-altitude natives.
Finally, Dr. Lydia Simpson will present the latest work on how different routes of high-altitude
adaptation, in Andean and Himalayan natives, influences blood pressure control.


  • Hemoglobin Adaptations to High Altitude Alter Breathing Pattern, But Not Thermogenic
    VO2max in Deer mice (Peromyscus maniculatus)

    Catherine Ivy — Biology, University of Western Ontario

  • Resting and Exercise Responses to Hypoxia: Insights from High-affinity Hemoglobin
    Chad Wiggins — Anesthesiology, Mayo Clinic

  • Thick Blood in Thin Air: Human Physiology at High Altitude
    Joshua C Tremblay — School of Health and Exercise Sciences, University of British Columbia-Okanagan

  • A Sympathetic View of Blood Pressure Control at High Altitude
    Lydia Simpson — Sport Science, University of Innsbruck

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