Featured News

Archive of Teaching Resources Relaunches As Life Sciences Teaching Community

New community offers thousands of free resources for life science educators. The Physiological Society, Genetics Society of America, and American Society of Plant Biologists join as scientific society partners.

Race Now or Later? Calculating the Best Time to Compete after Altitude Training

In a new review article, researchers explore the ideal time to return to sea level and compete following training at high altitude. The research is one of 15 articles on hypoxia—this month’s highlighted topic in the Journal of Applied Physiology.

A Protein Could Be a Key Weapon in the Battle of the Bulge

In a new study, researchers found that elevated levels of GDNF protein could help fight the weight gain and health problems associated with a high-fat diet. The article is published in AJP-Gastro and was chosen as one of April's APSselect articles.

Not Only Is She Thinner Than You…Her Muscles Work Better, Too

In a new AJP-Endo study, researchers examined how muscle physiology plays into being and staying lean.

Genes May Thwart Seniors’ Exercise Gains

A new study in Physiological Genomics examines the ACE I/D gene and how its variations -- the ID, DD, and II genotypes -- cause some seniors' to lose out on the benefits of exercise.

APS Elects New 2014 Officers

APS announces its newly-elected officers for 2014. Patricia E. Molina, MD, PhD is the new president-elect. Barbara Alexander, PhD; Rudy M. Ortiz, PhD; and Bill Yates, PhD have been named to the APS Council.

APS Announces New Society-wide Virtual Journal, APSselect

January 2014 marks the beginning of an exciting new initiative for the Society. Our new virtual journal, entitled APSselect, will highlight the “best of the best” of the some 250 papers published each month by the Society’s 10 research journals.

“The Sex of Cells” in the Lab

At first glance one might think that a cell lacks features that would reflect its sex or gender. In fact, that is not true. Researchers are now discovering that the sex of experimental subjects—even cells—does matter in research.

Fetal Alcohol Syndrome Heart Defects May Be Caused by Altered Function, Not Structure

Study utilizing using animal model finds fetal alcohol syndrome (FAS) heart defects may be caused by altered function, not structure.

For Altitude Training, a Narrow Window for Success

In a new study, researchers found that living between 2000 and 2500 meters above sea level offered the best performance enhancement compared to living at higher or lower elevations. These findings could help competitive endurance athletes and their coaches develop altitude training regimens that have the highest chance of success.

Quadriplegics at Risk for Serious Sleep Breathing Disorder

New findings suggest that where the spinal cord is injured—in the neck, or lower—can affect the likelihood and type of breathing problems during sleep, including central sleep apnea. Understanding how and why patients’ nighttime breathing is affected could help doctors better manage these conditions.

For Obese Teen Girls, Aerobic Exercise May Trump Resistance Training In Health Benefits

New findings suggest that for teen girls, aerobic exercise might be superior to resistance exercise for cutting health risks associated with obesity. Study published in the American Journal of Physiology-Endocrinology and Metabolism.

Vitamin C Could Ease Muscle Fatigue in Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease Patients

New findings show IV infusions of vitamin C can improve skeletal muscle fatigue in COPD patients, further implicating the role of oxidative stress in the skeletal muscle problems that accompany the disease.

Hormone Levels in Women Using Contraception

Latest research provides new insight into mechanisms through which lower hormone levels may make the body more susceptible to damage caused by stress and the chronic elevation of the fight or flight response. A pattern consistent with these findings is observed in postmenopausal women.

Sad News, Death of Bill Stanley, EIC, AJP-Heart

It is with great sadness that we announce the death of Bill Stanley, Editor-in-Chief of AJP-Heart in Sydney, Australia. Bill’s death was very sudden and the news is shocking. Bill was a passionate and innovative leader of AJP-Heart, and the Journal editors and staff will ensure that his work on the journal continues without pause. We express our deepest condolences to his family.

Milk-Maker Hormone May Help Liver Regenerate

Prolactin has an important function in the liver, but how important? Researchers, using an animal model, found the animals with extra prolactin had larger livers, regenerated their livers faster after partial removal, and were significantly more likely to survive liver surgery compared to animals that couldn’t process prolactin.

Sleeping In on the Weekends Doesn’t Fix All the Deficits Caused by Workweek Sleep Loss

A new study assesses the effects of extended “weekend” recovery sleep following “one workweek” of mild sleep restriction on sleepiness/alertness, inflammation and stress hormones. Article is published in the American Journal of Physiology – Endocrinology and Metabolism.

When it Comes to the Good Cholesterol, Fitness Trumps Weight

New findings suggest that maintaining a “healthy” weight isn’t as important for healthy cholesterol function as being active by regularly performing strength training. Study is published in the Journal of Applied Physiology.

Auditory Cortex

A new study suggests that the auditory cortex does more than just process sound. When study subjects were expecting a reward and received it, or weren't expecting a reward and were right, this area lit up on brain scans. Study published in the Journal of Neurophysiology.

Transmitting Future Asthma by Smoking Today

A new study confirms the lasting legacy of smoking. In the study, researchers exposed animal mothers to nicotine during pregnancy—a proxy for smoking—and found the grandchildren were also at an increased risk for asthma, despite the grandchildren never having been exposed to nicotine themselves.

Carbon Monoxide Could Hold Promise

New study provides evidence for the effects of carbon monoxide in pregnancy, and the role it might have in attenuating the signs of preeclampsia (PE). The study, conducted in animal model, is published in the American Journal of Physiology–Regulatory, Integrative, and Comparative Physiology.

Placebo Effect and Lessons for Medicine

The findings of a comprehensive review of the placebo phenomenon and its consequences for clinical medicine are contained in a new article by neuroscientist Fabrizio Benedetti. The Review article provides an in-depth biological and evolutionary approach to examining the placebo effect in relationship to the doctor-patient relationship.

Birds Appear to Lack Key Anti-Inflammatory Protein

Bird diseases can have a vast impact on humans so understanding their immune systems can benefit people. An important element in the immune system of many animals' immune systems is the protein tristetraprolin (TTP), which plays an anti-inflammatory role, yet researchers have been unable to find it in birds. New research suggests birds are truly an anomaly.

Hitting the Gym May Help Men Avoid Diet-Induced Erectile Dysfunction

Eating the Western diet is a risk factor for erectile dysfunction and coronary artery disease. How can junk food lovers avoid these problems? Exercise. Researchers used rats put on a “junk food” diet to test the effects of aerobic exercise and found that exercise effectively improved both erectile dysfunction and the function of vessels that supply blood to the heart.

Piano Fingers: How Players Strike Keys Depends on How Muscles Are Used

Researchers have long been aware of a phenomenon in speech called coarticulation, in which certain sounds are produced differently depending on the sounds that come before or after them. A new study suggests that piano paying also involves coarticulation, with hand muscle contractions differing depending on the sequence of notes played.

Denis Jordanet: The Physiologist Who Discovered the Role of Low Blood Oxygen at High Altitude

We’ve known for well over a century that low blood oxygen causes altitude sickness. The origin of this idea has long been attributed to French researcher Paul Bert. But it’s really Bert’s benefactor, Denis Jourdanet, who deserves the credit, according to a new article in the American Journal of Physiology-Lung, Cellular and Molecular Physiology.

Relationship Between Sleep and Memory: A Historical Review

What’s the relationship between sleep and memory? A recent article in Physiological Reviews covers the field through a historical perspective on concepts and a discussion of more recent key findings. It also takes into account the varying approaches that have been used to clarify the mechanism that causes memory to benefit from sleep.

Estrogen’s Effects on Fat Depends on Where It’s Located

Why women tend to accumulate fat in the stereotypical “pear” shape, with more fat in the buttocks and thighs (a shape that’s thought to be healthier than men’s stereotypical “apple” shape, with more fat around the belly), is still unclear. A new study gathers clues to help understand the role of estrogen’s effects on fat.

Estrogen’s Effects on Fat Depends on Where It’s Located

Why women tend to accumulate fat in the stereotypical “pear” shape, with more fat in the buttocks and thighs (a shape that’s thought to be healthier than men’s stereotypical “apple” shape, with more fat around the belly), is still unclear. A new study gathers clues to help understand the role of estrogen’s effects on fat.

Where Do Astronauts Go When They Need “To Go?”

The first American man in space had no place “to go,” and urinating in space was a tough problem for engineers to solve. In a new article, Hunter Hollins of the National Air and Space Museum reviews the history of urine collection in space in an article entitled, “Forgotten Hardware: How to Urinate in a Spacesuit,” which discusses the considerations necessary to accommodate this basic physiological function.

APS Statement on NIH Implementation of IOM Principles

APS issues statement on NIH implementation of the recommendations of the IOM principles and criteria related to chimpanzee research. Society supports outcome-oriented guidelines for these animals housing and social group and assessing whether adjustments to a proposed timeline are needed.

Why Hard Drinking is Harder on the Body with Age

Alcohol abuse could be even dangerous for the elderly than for younger adults. A new study in rats suggests that heavy, chronic drinking accelerates the normal muscle loss that comes with aging.

New Flu Strains Prompt Review of Current Research, Call to Redouble Flu Fight

Despite numerous medical advances over the past century, the flu—a seasonal rite of passage for many around the world—still remains deadly and dangerous. In April of this year, a new flu strain known as H7N9, thought to have the potential to cause a pandemic, emerged in China. This novel strain’s high mortality rate has led the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to issue predictions of hospitalizations, deaths, and economic impacts several times higher than those caused by the typical seasonal flu. In light of this and other information researchers have published a comprehensive overview of current flu research and efforts to combat this potentially lethal disease, including global surveillance to track the flu and vaccines and antiviral drugs currently in use. They also issue a call to improve efforts to fight the flu, including improving efforts to educate the public about the flu.

Fish Oil May Help the Heart Beat Mental Stress

Why is fish oil good for the heart? A new study suggests that this omega 3 fatty acid-rich nutrient could blunt some cardiovascular effects of mental stress.

Inaugural Outstanding Junior Investigator Award

AJP-Lung is delighted to announce that we received nineteen nominations for papers on all aspects of lung biology.

Odd Experiments by “America’s First Physiologist” Shed Light on Digestion

A fur trader who suffered an accidental gunshot wound in 1822 and the physician who saw this unfortunate incident as an opportunity for research are keys to much of our early knowledge about the workings of the digestive system. Symposium, “William Beaumont: America’s First Physiologist and Pioneer of Gastrointestinal Research,” sponsored by American Physiological Society.

Drug Reduces Fat by Blocking Blood Vessels

Researchers have long known that cancerous tumors grow collections of abnormal blood cells, the fuel that feeds this disease and keeps it growing. Now, new evidence in an animal model suggests that blood vessels in the fat tissue of obese individuals could provide the same purpose—and could provide the key to a new way for people to lose weight.

Nearly Half of Veterans Found with Blast Concussions Might Have Hormone Deficiencies

Up to 20 percent of veterans returning from Afghanistan and Iraq have experienced at least one blast concussion. A new study finds about 42% of screened veterans with blast injuries have irregular hormone levels indicative of hypopituitarism, the decreased (hypo) secretion of one or more of the eight hormones normally produced by the pituitary gland at the base of the brain. Many conditions associated with hypopituitarism mimic other common problems that veterans can suffer, including post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and depression.

Cutting Back on Sleep Harms Blood Vessel Function and Breathing Control

Researchers have tested the effects of partial sleep deprivation on blood vessels and breathing control and found that reducing sleep length over two consecutive nights leads to less healthy vascular function and impaired breathing control. The findings could help explain why sleep deprivation is associated with cardiovascular disease.

Two Days of Staging as Effective as Four for High Altitude Climbs

Conventional knowledge suggests that to avoid acute mountain sickness (AMS), climbers need to “stage,” or set up camp, at a lower altitude for four days when summiting peaks as high as 4300 meters. A U.S. Army Research Institute of Environmental Medicine team has found that two days of staging at a moderate altitude may be enough.

Indiana University Associate Professor Earns American Physiological Society’s Henry Pickering Bowditch Award

Johnathan D. Tune will present the American Physiological Society’s Henry Pickering Bowditch Award Lecture on April 21, 2013 during the Society’s 126th annual meeting. Dr. Tune is being recognized for his work on the mechanisms that connect obesity, diabetes, and heart disease. His lecture is entitled, “Translational Insight Into Regulation of Coronary Blood Flow."

Mayo Clinic Anesthesiologist Earns APS’s Walter B. Cannon Award

Michael Joyner, M.D. will present the American Physiological Society’s Walter B. Cannon Award Lecture on April 20, 2013, during the Society’s 126th annual meeting. The Cannon Award is the Society’s pre-eminent award. The Mayo Clinic anesthesiologist will discuss physiology’s enduring relevancy.

An Update on EB 2013 - Boston

As you know, two bombs exploded yesterday near the finish line of the Boston Marathon. At least 3 people were killed, and more than a hundred were injured, some seriously. Our thoughts and prayers are with everyone affected by this horrific event.

Household Air Pollution (HAP) and Biomass Fuels

Almost 4 million people die annually from household air pollution (HAP) caused by exposure to the combustion of biomass fuels, kerosene, or coal. These individuals are among the tens of millions who rely on the products for cooking, heating, and light. A new article explains the need for improved HAP biomarkers, and more.

APS Urges NIH to Revisit Chimpanzee Recommendations

The APS supports NIH’s efforts to utilize a science-based approach to resolve issues related to future research and care of chimpanzees, President Dr. Susan M. Barman said in a letter to Dr. James Anderson, Director of the Division of Program Coordination, Planning, and Strategic Initiatives. Nevertheless, the APS concluded that the report was “deeply flawed.”

Program Highlights from the Upcoming Meeting of the American Physiological Society

The APS’s 126th annual meeting offers more than 2,700 programmed abstracts and dozens of symposia. Program highlights include the Nobel Laureate in Physiology or Medicine Lecture, and presentations on eating disorders, human brain function, sex-based differences in exercise metabolism, and understanding emerging concepts about the pathology of diabetes and obesity. The meeting will be held April 20-24, 2013 at the Boston Convention and Exhibition Center, Boston, Mass.

APS Announces Top Award Lectures, Distinguished Lectureships at Experimental Biology 2013

APS announces the names of 14 distinguished researchers to be honored for their contributions to the field at the Society’s 126th annual meeting. The event, part of the Experimental Biology (EB) 2013 meeting, will be held April 20-24, 2013 at the Boston Convention & Exhibition Center.

Study Explains Why Fainting Can Result From Blood Pressure Drug Used In Conjunction With Other Disorders

New study identifies why prazosin, a drug commonly used to reduce high blood pressure, may cause lightheadedness and possible fainting upon standing in patients with normal blood pressure who take the drug for other reasons, such as PTSD and anxiety.

APS Executive Director shares his views on open access in the New England Journal of Medicine

APS Executive Director shares his views on open access in a New England Journal of Medicine Perspective article titled “Open but Not Free – Publishing in the 21st Century".

Comprehensive Physiology indexed in PubMed/Medline

Comprehensive Physiology, the APS serial publication launched in January 2011 is now indexed in Medline/PubMed. Indexing will be retroactive to the first issue. The APS, Ron Terjung, Editor-in-Chief, and Wiley-Blackwell, publisher of the Journal on behalf of the APS, are delighted with this outstanding outcome.

1st PanAmerican Congress of Physiological Sciences 2014

The Scientific Programming Committee (SPC) for the 1st Pan-American Congress of Physiological Sciences invites submission of proposals for Plenary Lectures, Keynote Speakers and Symposia. The first historical meeting of physiologists from the three Americas will be held in the city of Foz do Iguaçu, Brazil from August 2-6, 2014. The theme for the Congress is “Physiology without Borders”.

County of San Diego California's Proclamation to APS

The County of San Diego California proclaimed April 21, 2012 to be "American Physiology Society Day" thoughtout San Diego County.

San Diego Mayor, Jerry Sanders, Extends Welcome to APS

San Diego Mayor Jerry Sanders extends a welcome to APS and issues a proclamation in recognition of the Society’s 125th anniversary, declaring April 21, 2012 to be “American Physiological Society Day” in the City of San Diego.