Navigation Links
MIT: Leveraging learning for artificial respiration

CAMBRIDGE, MA- MIT researchers have found that the body's innate ability to adapt to recurring stimuli could be leveraged to design more effective and less costly artificial respirators. The new approach could minimize the need for the induced sedation or paralysis currently necessary for some patients on mechanical ventilation.

Nonassociative learning, or our innate ability to adapt to recurring stimuli, is the focus of work to be described in the September 12 issue of PLoS ONE, the online, open-access journal from the Public Library of Science.

Specifically, Chi-Sang Poon, a research scientist at the Harvard-MIT Division of Health Sciences and Technology (HST), and colleagues examined rats under mechanical ventilation to see how they applied different forms of nonassociative learning to adapt to the rhythm imposed by the respirator.

Existing respirators do not consider the adaptive nature of breathing in their design. Some ignore the patient's natural rhythm and pump air in and out of the lungs on set intervals. As a result, doctors often must sedate or paralyze patients to prevent them from fighting an unfamiliar rhythm. Other respirator designs rely entirely on the patient to trigger the airflow. These systems, however, are costly and tend to be unreliable for weak patients such as newborns or those in critical care.

The MIT research suggests, however, that if a doctor takes the patient's natural breathing rhythm into account and sets the ventilator's rhythm in that same range, the patient will adapt and synchronize with the ventilator. This new approach could minimize the need for induced sedation or paralysis.

We have intrinsic nonassociative learning capabilities, called habituation and desensitization, that [can] make up for changes in the spontaneous rhythm due to artificial lung inflation, says Poon.

In tests of rats under artificial respiration, Poon found that, if using a suitable rhythm, rats adapted to the mechanical ventilation. He also found that this learning capability enabled mice to adapt to an artificial rhythm even when the mechanical respirators applied constant air pressure. The rats effectively tuned out this extra pressure, filtering it out as background noise. When Poon disabled the neural pathways involved in nonassociative learning, the rats' ability to adapt was either eliminated or compromised.

Though nonassociative learning is familiar and commonly applied to smelling roses and adjusting to sunlight after emerging from a dark movie theater, it is not usually applied in a clinical environment. Because of their focus on stabilizing patients, clinicians often discount the power of learning. "Many ventilators are designed as if the patient were never in the equation, says Poon. But it turns out, our vital functions can learn to adapt in order to survive.


Contact: Elizabeth Thomson
Massachusetts Institute of Technology

Related biology technology :

1. Kind approach to leveraging biofuels
2. Distance-Learning Remote Laboratories using LabVIEW
3. Learning from the big boys: With technology, women urged to go gradual
4. Video game learning has no traction in K-12
5. TechnoJungle to highlight learning, innovation
6. Gaming conference explores interactive media in learning
7. Learning to swim in the global talent pool
8. Schmidt rejoins Renaissance Learning
9. Learning how far your message reaches by Googling yourself
10. Charter Business powers distance learning
11. Renaissance Learning CEO resigns to start company
Post Your Comments:
(Date:11/26/2015)... , England , November 26, 2015 ... Lightpoint Medical, an innovative medical device company specializing in imaging ... grant from the European Commission as part of the Horizon ... the company to carry out a large-scale clinical trial in ... -->      (Logo: , --> ...
(Date:11/25/2015)... , November 25, 2015 2 ... première fois les différences entre les souches bactériennes ... celles des êtres humains . Ces recherches ... et envisager la prise en charge efficace de ... diagnostiqués chez les chats .    --> ...
(Date:11/25/2015)... 25, 2015  Neurocrine Biosciences, Inc. (Nasdaq: NBIX ... and CEO of Neurocrine Biosciences, will be presenting at ... New York . .   ... approximately 5 minutes prior to the presentation to download ... presentation will be available on the website approximately one ...
(Date:11/25/2015)... , Nov. 25, 2015 Orexigen® Therapeutics, Inc. ... participate in a fireside chat discussion at the Piper ... York . The discussion is scheduled for Wednesday, ... .  A replay will be available for ... Stilwell  , Julie NormartVP, Corporate Communications and Business ...
Breaking Biology Technology:
(Date:11/16/2015)... Calif. , Nov 16, 2015  Synaptics ... of human interface solutions, today announced expansion of ... TouchView ™ touch controller and display driver ... revolution of smartphones. These new TDDI products add ... TD4100 (HD resolution), TD4302 (WQHD resolution), and TD4322 ...
(Date:11/12/2015)... 11, 2015   Growing need for low-cost, ... has been paving the way for use of ... discrete analytes in clinical, agricultural, environmental, food and ... used in medical applications, however, their adoption is ... to continuous emphasis on improving product quality and ...
(Date:11/10/2015)... , Nov. 10, 2015 ... behavioral biometrics that helps to identify and verify ... Signature is considered as the secure and accurate ... identification of a particular individual because each individual,s ... accurate results especially when dynamic signature of an ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):