On the origins of sex-based differences in respiratory disorders: Lessons and hypotheses from stress neuroendocrinology in developing rats.

TitleOn the origins of sex-based differences in respiratory disorders: Lessons and hypotheses from stress neuroendocrinology in developing rats.
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2017
AuthorsRousseau, J-P, Tenorio-Lopes, L, Baldy, C, Janes, TAdele, Fournier, S, Kinkead, R
JournalRespir Physiol Neurobiol
Volume245
Pagination105-121
Date Published2017 Nov
ISSN1878-1519
Abstract

The environment plays a critical role in shaping development and function of the brain. Stress, especially when experienced early in life, can interfere with these processes. In the context of respiratory control, perinatal stress can therefore alter the ability to achieve the "fine-tuning" necessary for proper detection of chemosensory stimuli and production of an adequate motor (respiratory) command. Depending on the timing, intensity, and duration, the detrimental consequences of perinatal exposure to adverse conditions on the respiratory network become manifest at various life stages and can persist into adulthood. During early life, respiratory diseases commonly associated with dysfunction of neural networks include apnea of prematurity (AOP) and cardio-respiratory failure leading to sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS). Sleep disordered breathing (SDB) can occur at various life stages, including adulthood. Regardless of age, a common element of these disorders is their greater prevalence in males. While this sexual dimorphism points to a potential role of sex hormones, our understanding of the neuroendocrine mechanisms remain poorly understood. In addition to their modulatory influence on breathing, gonadal hormones regulate sexual differentiation of the brain. Stress alters these effects, and over the years our laboratory has used various perinatal stress protocols to gain insight into the origins of sex-based differences in respiratory disorders. This review discusses our recent advances with a focus on the sex-specific impact of early life stress on O2-chemoreflex function both in newborn and adult rats. We conclude by discussing the basic principles emerging from this work, potential mechanisms, and clinical relevance.

DOI10.1016/j.resp.2017.03.013
Alternate JournalRespir Physiol Neurobiol
PubMed ID28416458