Professor Julian Paton
University of Auckland
Department of Physiology
Autonomic nervous system control of the circulation, central control of breathing and coupling of these systems in health and disease. Understanding mechanisms of autonomic imbalance during disease states such as heart failure, sleep apnoea and hypertension. Currently, assessing pharmacogenetic, optogenetic and device based interventions as potential therapeutic approaches to treating cardiovascular disease. A major focus is on targeting sensory visceral afferent systems known to trigger autonomic imbalance due to their sensitisation in disease.
The MedTech CoRE funded Prana gaming project will look at harnessing respiration, in particular training to prolong exhalation, as a therapeutic approach for restoring autonomic balance in hypertension. The game will fully interact with your autonomic nervous system and the only way to win will be to calm fight and flight sensations through control of breathing.