1. Neuroscience
Download icon

Respiration aligns perception with neural excitability

  1. Daniel S Kluger  Is a corresponding author
  2. Elio Balestrieri
  3. Niko A Busch
  4. Joachim Gross
  1. University of Münster, Germany
Research Article
  • Cited 2
  • Views 1,691
  • Annotations
Cite this article as: eLife 2021;10:e70907 doi: 10.7554/eLife.70907

Abstract

Recent studies from the field of interoception have highlighted the link between bodily and neural rhythms during action, perception, and cognition. The mechanisms underlying functional body-brain coupling, however, are poorly understood, as are the ways in which they modulate behaviour. We acquired respiration and human magnetoencephalography (MEG) data from a near-threshold spatial detection task to investigate the trivariate relationship between respiration, neural excitability, and performance. Respiration was found to significantly modulate perceptual sensitivity as well as posterior alpha power (8 - 13 Hz), a well-established proxy of cortical excitability. In turn, alpha suppression prior to detected vs undetected targets underscored the behavioural benefits of heightened excitability. Notably, respiration-locked excitability changes were maximised at a respiration phase lag of around -30° and thus temporally preceded performance changes. In line with interoceptive inference accounts, these results suggest that respiration actively aligns sampling of sensory information with transient cycles of heightened excitability to facilitate performance.

Data availability

The anonymised data supporting the findings of this study are openly available from on the Open Science Framework (https://osf.io/ajuzh/).

Article and author information

Author details

  1. Daniel S Kluger

    University of Münster, Münster, Germany
    For correspondence
    daniel.kluger@uni-muenster.de
    Competing interests
    The authors declare that no competing interests exist.
    ORCID icon "This ORCID iD identifies the author of this article:" 0000-0002-0691-794X
  2. Elio Balestrieri

    University of Münster, Münster, Germany
    Competing interests
    The authors declare that no competing interests exist.
  3. Niko A Busch

    University of Münster, Münster, Germany
    Competing interests
    The authors declare that no competing interests exist.
    ORCID icon "This ORCID iD identifies the author of this article:" 0000-0003-4837-0345
  4. Joachim Gross

    University of Münster, Münster, Germany
    Competing interests
    The authors declare that no competing interests exist.

Funding

Interdisciplinary Center for Clinical Research, University of Münster (Gro3/001/19)

  • Joachim Gross

Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft (GR2024/5-1)

  • Joachim Gross

Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft (BU2400/9-1)

  • Niko A Busch

The funders had no role in study design, data collection and interpretation, or the decision to submit the work for publication.

Ethics

Human subjects: All participants gave written informed consent prior to all experimental procedures. The study was approved by the local ethics committee of the University of Muenster (approval ID 2018-068-f-S) and complied with the Declaration of Helsinki.

Reviewing Editor

  1. Jonas Obleser, University of Lübeck, Germany

Publication history

  1. Preprint posted: March 25, 2021 (view preprint)
  2. Received: June 2, 2021
  3. Accepted: December 13, 2021
  4. Accepted Manuscript published: December 14, 2021 (version 1)
  5. Version of Record published: January 17, 2022 (version 2)

Copyright

© 2021, Kluger et al.

This article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License permitting unrestricted use and redistribution provided that the original author and source are credited.

Metrics

  • 1,691
    Page views
  • 220
    Downloads
  • 2
    Citations

Article citation count generated by polling the highest count across the following sources: Crossref, PubMed Central, Scopus.

Download links

A two-part list of links to download the article, or parts of the article, in various formats.

Downloads (link to download the article as PDF)

Download citations (links to download the citations from this article in formats compatible with various reference manager tools)

Open citations (links to open the citations from this article in various online reference manager services)