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HOMEOSTASIS IN HIBERNATION
ARCTIC AEROMEDICAL LAB FORT WAINWRIGHT ALASKA
Pagination or Media Count:
The entire cycle of hibernation is under precise physiological control. Preparations for hibernation take place in various species and include involution of endocrine glands, fattening, desaturation of depot fat and storage of food. Reductions in oxygen consumption, respiratory rate, and heart rate occur before a decline in body temperature as the animal enters the hibernating state. During hibernation mammals respond to dangerously low ambient temperatures by increasing their metabolic rate. They are sensitive to high inspired CO2 or low O2. They are poised to wake naturally from hibernation or if physically disturbed. During arousal, oxygen consumption and heart rate may increase one hundredfold, and the warming process is confined to the anterior portion of the body by differential vasoconstriction until the final phase of arousal. Arousal is a prodigious physiological effort, which would be cataclysmic if not fully coordinated. Author
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