The brain, more than any other organ in the body, requires a constant supply of oxygen and nutrients, as well as the removal of waste products. In healthy humans, this blood flow should stay approximately constant when blood pressure varies, and adapt to changes in energy consumption and carbon dioxide and oxygen levels in the blood, pressure inside the skull and other factors. This regulation of blood flow is achieved primarily by arterioles (small arteries) dilating and contracting, under the influence of multiple complex physiological control systems. Impairment of these systems may occur e.g. following stroke, trauma or anaesthesia, in premature babies or the elderly, and has been implicated in the development of subsequent brain injury. The non-invasive measurement of relevant physiological signals (blood flow, intracranial and blood pressure, CO2 levels, cerebral oxygen consumption etc.) is challenging and the subsequent assessment of the control systems even more so. Much also remains unknown about the physiology of blood flow control and the best clinical interventions to optimize patient outcome.
Cerebral autoregulation refers to the physiological mechanisms that maintain bloodflow at an appropriate level, especially during changes in blood pressure. Due to the important influences of arterial carbon dioxide levels, cerebral metabolic rate, neural activation, activity of the sympathetic nervous system, posture, as well as other physiological variables, 'cerebral autoregulation' is often interpreted as also encompassing the wider field of cerebral blood flow regulation, including areas such as CO2 reactivity, neurovascular coupling and other aspects of cerebral haemodynamics.
Understanding and measuring autoregulation remains a big challenge, and despite great clinical interest and much research effort, benefit to patients has so far been limited.
CARNet therefore aims to bring the multidisciplinary research community working in this area together in order to promote and accelerate high quality research by:
CARNet aims to create an environment of trust, openness and confidentiality in which free discussion of scientific ideas, data and results can flourish.
We are pleased to announce the next CARNet international conference. This will be held in Southampton, UK between 13th and 15th July 2015. Preliminary details can be found at our meeting pages.
Colour and greyscale CARNet logo images have been added for promotional use by members. The new links can be found on the new media page.
Vacancies for three post-doctoral research fellows are available on the project “Diversity in blood flow control to the brain: moving from individualized modelling towards personalized treatment of the injured brain”. More details can be found via Job_vacancies_-_EPSRC_-_three_centres.pdf.
We are pleased to announce the next CARNet international conference. This will be held in San-Diego, USA between 26th and 30th April 2014. Preliminary details can be found at our meeting pages.
We would like to announce a call to join a number of “Special Interest Groups”. More information on our special interest group page.
The sites publications, training materials and online resources have been streamlined and a new “publications by members of the group” section added. The old citations, learning materials and new publications can now be found on the new resources page.
Two new autoregulation informaton resources have been added to the site. The new links can be found on the learning page.
The finalised constitution for the CARNet group has now been published to the website. More infromation can be found on the group page.
Joining the CARNet group is as simple as writing an email. All details can be found on the joining page.