Ryan Bavis – Animal Physiology

Respiratory physiology and neurobiology

Professor Bavis studies respiratory physiology, with a particular emphasis on the neural control of breathing in mammals and birds. Recent research projects in his laboratory have focused on the interaction between environmental conditions during early life and development of the respiratory control system (i.e., developmental plasticity). The primary objectives of his research program are to identify the functional significance and underlying mechanisms of plasticity in the control of breathing.

He and his students use an integrative approach to study these problems, combining molecular, histological and electrophysiological techniques with studies in the intact animal (typically rats, mice, and quail, but also other vertebrate and invertebrate species). Ultimately, understanding the neural control of breathing has broad biomedical and evolutionary significance, and Professor Bavis strives to incorporate both perspectives into his research. Professor Bavis’s research interests are not limited to the control of breathing, however. Throughout his research career he has been interested in how variation in oxygen and carbon dioxide influence other physiological processes, such as thermoregulation and energy metabolism, and how these gases impact growth, development and behavior. Professor Bavis has also mentored student-originated thesis research projects in diverse areas of animal physiology and behavioral ecology.

Selected Publications

Underlined names = Bates students.

Bavis RW, Li K-Y, DeAngelis KJ, March RJ, Wallace JA, Logan S, and Putnam RW. 2017. Ventilatory and chemoreceptor responses to hypercapnia in neonatal rats chronically exposed to moderate hyperoxia. Respir Physiol Neurobiol 237: 22-34.

Bavis RW and MacFarlane PM. 2017. Developmental plasticity in the neural control of breathing. Exper Neurol 287: 176-191.

Logan S, Tobin KE, Fallon SC, Deng KS, McDonough AB, and Bavis RW. 2016. Chronic intermittent hyperoxia alters the development of the hypoxic ventilatory response in neonatal rats. Respir Physiol Neurobiol 220: 69-80.

Bavis RW, DeAngelis KJ, Horowitz TC, Reedich LM, and March RJ. 2014. Hyperoxia-induced developmental plasticity of the hypoxic ventilatory response in neonatal rats: contributions of glutamate-dependent and PDGF-dependent mechanisms. Respir Physiol Neurobiol 191: 84-94.

Selected Mentored Theses

Smachlo, Julia 2017. Impact of chronic hypoxia on the developing respiratory control system in rats.

Song, Monata 2017. Age dependent pattern of hypoxic ventilatory and metabolic responses in Japanese quail (Coturnix japonica) chicks.

Butler, Jesse 2016. Effects of developmental intermittent hypoxia and hyperoxia on the hypoxic ventilatory response of adult rats.

O’Toole, Caitlin 2016. Effects of prenatal hyperoxia on the development of carotid body chemoresponsiveness in rats.