Niels Vidiendal Olsen Group – University of Copenhagen

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Research

In 2013, we have carried out a research programme delineating the effects of recombinant human erythropoeitin (rhEPO) on the human brain. The performance gain following doping with rhEPO can be explained by the increase in haemoglobin mass and aerobic power, but concurrent effects on brain perfusion and metabolism remain unknown. Healthy subjects underwent cerebral PET and MR scans following low-dose and high-dose erythropoietin. In addition, we tested the effect of recombinant erythropietin on endothelial function and central haemodynamics. One aspect involves the use of a new method, membrane assisted isoform immunoassay (MAIIA), to differentiate erythropoietin isoforms by their posttranslational glycosylation pattern. In other studies, we evaluated the effect of electroconvulsive therapy on the autonomic nervous system in humans by testing the effect of muscarinic receptor blocking agents on the cardiovascular response and vagal-induced secretion of pancreatic polypeptide. We have also continued our studies on effects of anaesthesia on peripheral nerve conduction. In collaboration with the Niels Bohr Institute, studies in healthy subjects assessed the motor axon membrane impairment following median nerve regional anesthesia by lidocaine.

  • Headed by postdoc. Peter Rasmussen and ph.d.-stipendiate Niels Jacob Aachmann-Andersen, the Research Unit in 2013 has completed its project on cerebral effects of recombinant erythropoietin. In a double-blind, cross-over study healthy subjects underwent cerebral PET and MR scans following low-dose and high-dose erythropoietin. In other studies, we tested the effect of recombinant erythropietin on endothelial function and central haemodynamics. One aspect involves the use of a new method, membrane assisted isoform immunoassay (MAIIA), to differentiate erythropoietin isoforms by their posttranslational glycosylation pattern. Data analysis is ongoing.
  • A study in ECT-treated patients has been completed. The study evaluated the effect of electroconvulsive therapy on the autonomic nervous system. In a randomized fasion, we tested the effect of muscarinic receptor blocking agents (atropine and glykopyrron) on the cardiovascular response and vagal-induced secretion of pancreatic polypeptide.
  • Effects of anaesthesia on peripheral nerve conduction may include effects on physical properties of the axonal membrane. In collaboration with the Niels Bohr Institute, studies in healthy subjects assessed the motor axon membrane impairment following median nerve regional anesthesia by lidocaine. A first manuscript is under review.
  • Peripheral arterial tonometry has been used to evaluate endothelial function in patients with subarachnoid hemorrhage and in healthy subjects during hypobaric hypoxia.
  • A research programme regarding the effect of hyperbaric oxygen on cerebral metabolism following CO poisoning has been initiated. The Research Unit supervises the use of intracerebral microdialysis in rodents.
  • Studies of the impact of nitric oxide pathways and their genetic heterogeneity on pathogenesis and pathophysiology in acute subarachnoid hemorrhage (SAH) has been completed. The biobank of the Research Unit, initiated 2005, now comprises DNA and clinical data from about 1500 patients. The studies formed the basis for a ph.d.-thesis presented May 31, 2013, by Dr Jonatan Myrup Staalsoe.
  • Funded by a scholarship to medical student Kristan Lisbjerg, we have initiated a study of changes in endothelial function, endogenous erythropoietin and the renin-angiotensin system induced by catheter-based renal sympathetic denervation in patients with malignant arterial hypertension.
  • Endurance performance highly depends upon adequate increases in cardiac output and oxygen delivery. Interindividual differences in cardiovascular responses to exercise may be caused by genetic variation in the 2-adrenergic receptor encoded by the intronless gene ADRB2. We found that the Gly16Arg polymorphism in ADRB2 by itself, independent of arrangements in haplotypes, contributes to heterogeneity in cardiac output at rest and during incremental exercise. The results add to the understanding of gene-exercise interactions and genetic influence on sports performance.