Physiol. Res. 48: 21-25, 1999

Control of Breathing and Brain Activation in Human Subjects Seen by Functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging


Institute of Pathophysiology and 1Institute of Functional Anatomy, Second Faculty of Medicine, Charles University, 2Institute of Clinical and Experimental Medicine, Prague, Czech Republic

Received March 17, 1998
Accepted September 17, 1998

Functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) was used to demonstrate the brain activation during transition from unconscious to conscious breathing in seven healthy human subjects. In right-handed volunteers, the activated areas were found in both hemispheres. The medial part of the precentral gyrus (area 4) was constantly activated in the left hemisphere. Additional activated areas were demonstrated in the premotor cortex and in the posterior parietal cortex. The activated cortical sites exhibited analogous distribution in the right hemisphere. In two out of the seven subjects, activated sites were also observed in the cerebellar hemispheres, and in the lentiform and caudate nuclei.

Key words
Respiratory control - Brain activation - Magnetic resonance

© 1999 by the Institute of Physiology, Czech Academy of Sciences