The 2018 Global Research Expedition on Altitude-related Chronic Health (REACH) to Cerro de Pasco, Peru: An Experimental Overview
Tymko, Michael M.
Meah, Victoria L.
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In 2016, the international research team - Global Research Expedition onAltitude-related Chronic Health (REACH) - was established and executed a high altituderesearch expedition to Nepal. The team consists of ~45 students, principal investigatorsand physicians with the common objective of conducting experiments focused on highaltitude adaptation in lowlanders, and highlanders with lifelong exposure to high altitude.In 2018, Global REACH traveled to Peru where we performed a series of experiments inthe Andean highlanders. The experimental objectives, organization and characteristics,and key cohort data from Global REACH's latest research expedition are outlined herein.Herein, fifteen major studies are described that aimed to elucidate the physiologicaldifferences in high altitude acclimatization between lowlanders (n=30) and Andean bornhighlanders with (n=22) and without (n=45) Excessive Erythrocytosis (EE). Afterbaseline testing in Kelowna, BC, Canada (344m), Global REACH travelled to Lima, Peru(~80 m), and then ascended by automobile to Cerro de Pasco, Peru (~4300m) whereexperiments were conducted over 25 days. The core studies focused on elucidating themechanism(s) governing cerebral and peripheral vascular function, cardiopulmonaryregulation, exercise performance, and autonomic control. Despite encountering seriouslogistical challenges, each of the proposed studies were completed at both sea level andhigh altitude amounting to ~780 study sessions and >3000 hrs of experimental testing.Participant demographics and data related to acid-base balance and exercise capacityare presented. The collective findings will contribute to our understanding of howlowlanders and Andean highlanders have adapted under high altitude stress.
Article published in Experimental Physiology on 01 April 2020, available at: https://doi.org/10.1113/EP088350.
Cardiff Metropolitan University (Grant ID: Cardiff Metropolian (Internal))
Canada Research Chair: Philip N Ainslie, F16-02798; Gouvernement duCanada | Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (Conseil deRecherches en Sciences Naturelles et en Génie du Canada): Philip N Ainslie, F18-00605;Gouvernement du Canada | Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council ofCanada (Conseil de Recherches en Sciences Naturelles et en Génie du Canada): MichaelM Tymko, Doctoral Grant
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