Springer Nature is making SARS-CoV-2 and COVID-19 research free. View research | View latest news | Sign up for updates

Effect of the larynx on ventilation and respiratory pattern in anesthetized rabbits

  • 10 Accesses


The effects of the larynx on ventilation and pattern of breathing have been investigated in anesthetized, spontaneously breathing rabbits. Breathing was either via a tracheostomy or via a supralaryngeal tube in control condition, after laryngeal denervation and after subsequent bilateral midcervical vagotomy. Laryngeal resistance was measured in all experimental conditions when breathing was through the larynx. In control conditions the presence of the larynx in the breathing circuit, as compared to breathing through the tracheostomy, slightly but significantly lowered inspiratory and expiratory airflows, tidal volume, and minute ventilation and increased tracheal pressure. Inspiratory and expiratory durations were not significantly changed. Expiratory laryngeal resistance was higher than inspiratory. Laryngeal deafferentation did not significantly modify values of the respiratory variables. Subsequent motor denervation of the larynx enhanced the decrease in ventilatory parameters due to adding the larynx to the circuit and lengthened the respiratory cycle. Inspiratory laryngeal resistance increased sevenfold and expiratory resistance threefold. Subsequent midcervical vagotomy induced a further increase in inspiratory and expiratory durations and augmented tidal volume independent of the route of breathing, and also reduced laryngeal resistance previously increased by motor denervation. These results reveal the ventilatory effects of the larynx and show the importance of its patency in the pattern of breathing.

This is a preview of subscription content, log in to check access.


  1. Baier H, Wanner A, Zarzecki S, Sackner MA (1977) Relationship among glottis opening, respiratory flow, and upper airway resistance in humans. J Appl Physiol 43:603–611

  2. Bartlett D, Jr, Remmers JE, Gautier H (1973) Laryngeal regulation of respiratory airflow. Respir Physiol 18:194–204

  3. Blide RW, Kerr HD, Spicer WS (1964) Measurement of upper and lower airway resistance and conductance in man. J Appl Physiol 19:1059–1069

  4. Brancatisano T, Collet PW, Engel LA (1983) Respiratory movements of the vocal cords. J Appl Physiol 54:1269–1276

  5. Citterio G, Mortola JP, Agostoni E (1985) Reflex effects on breathing of laryngeal denervation, negative pressure and SO2 in upper airways. Respir Physiol 62:203–215

  6. England SJ, Bartlett D Jr, Daubenspeck JA (1982) Influence of vocal cord movements on airflow and resistance during eupnea. J Appl Physiol 52:773–779

  7. Ferris BG, Mead J, Opie LH (1964) Partitioning of respiratory flow resistance in man. J Appl Physiol 19:653–658

  8. Gautier H, Remmers JE, Bartlett D Jr (1973) Control of duration of expiration. Respir Physiol 18:205–221

  9. Głogowska M, Szereda-Przestaszewska M (1981) The effect of the larynx on the breathing pattern in anaesthetized rabbits. Acta Physiol Pol 32:437–447

  10. Gottfried SB, Strohl KP, Graaff W van de, Fouke JM, DiMarco AF (1983) Effects of phrenic stimulation on upper airway resistance in anaesthetized dogs. J Appl Physiol 55:419–426

  11. Gregg RL (1956) Experimental laryngeal paralysis. Ann Otol Rhinol Laryngol 65:634–642

  12. Jammes Y, Davies A, Widdicombe JG (1985) Tracheobronchial and laryngeal responses to hypercapnia, histamine and capsaicine in dogs. Bull Eur Physiopathol Respir 21:515–520

  13. Kamosińska B, Szereda-Przestaszewska M (1986) Laryngeal patency and its ventilatory effects in anaesthetized rabbits. J Physiol (Lond) 380:44P

  14. Kamosińska B, Szereda-Przestaszewska M (1987) Phrenic output changes due to progressive airways' denervation in rabbits. Bull Eur Physiopathol Respir 23:155–161

  15. Mathew OM, Sant'Ambrogio G, Fisher JT, Sant'Ambrogio FB (1984) Respiratory afferent activity in the superior laryngeal nerves. Respir Physiol 58:41–50

  16. Murakami Y, Kirchner JA (1971) Vocal cord abduction by regenerated recurrent laryngeal nerve. Arch Otolaryngol 94:64–68

  17. Sant'Ambrogio G, Bartlett D Jr, Mortola J (1977) Innervation of stretch receptors in the extrathoracic trachea. Respir Physiol 29:93–99

  18. Sant'Ambrogio F, Sant'Ambrogio G, Mortola JP (1979) Reflex influences from the extrathoratic trachea during airway occlusion. Respir Physiol 36:327–336

  19. Sant'Ambrogio FB, Mathew OP, Clark WD, Sant'Ambrogio G (1985) Laryngeal influences on breathing pattern and posterior cricoarytenoid muscle activity. J Appl Physiol 58:1298–1304

  20. Siafakas NM, Chang HK, Bonora M, Gautier H, Milic-Emili J, Duron B (1981) Time course of phrenic activity and respiratory pressure during airway occlusion in cats. J Appl Physiol 51:99–108

  21. Spann RW, Hyatt RE (1971) Factors affecting upper airway resistance in conscious man. J Appl Physiol 31:708–712

  22. Stransky A, Szereda-Przestaszewska M, Widdicombe JG (1973) The effects of lung reflexes on laryngeal resistance and motoneurone discharge. J Physiol (Lond) 231:417–438

  23. Suzuki M, Kirchner JA (1969) Sensory fibres in the recurrent laryngeal nerve. Ann Otol Rhinol Laryngol 78:1–11

  24. Van Lunteren E, Strohl KP, Parker DM, Bruce EN, Van de Graaff WB, Cherniack NS (1984a) Phasic volume-related feedback on upper airway muscle activity. J Appl Physiol 56:730–736

  25. Van Lunteren E, Van de Graaff WB, Parker DM, Mitra J, Haxiu MA, Strohl KP, Cherniack NS (1984b) Nasal and laryngeal reflex responses to negative upper airway pressure. J Appl Physiol 56:746–752

  26. Zin WA, Rossi A, Milic-Emili J (1983) Model analysis of respiratory responses to inspiratory resistive loads. J Appl Physiol 55:1565–1573

Download references

Author information

Rights and permissions

Reprints and Permissions

About this article

Cite this article

Kamosińska, B., Szereda-Przestaszewska, M. Effect of the larynx on ventilation and respiratory pattern in anesthetized rabbits. Res. Exp. Med. 188, 49–57 (1988). https://doi.org/10.1007/BF01852094

Download citation

Key words

  • Larynx
  • Respiration
  • Laryngeal nerves
  • Vagotomy
  • Vocal cord paralysis