This article provides an overview of the history behind the physiological concepts defining the role of the arterial baroreflexes and their regulation of arterial blood pressure during dynamic exercise. Initially, the case is made as to "why the arterial baroreflexes must be involved with blood pressure regulation during exercise." Subsequently, the historical animal and human experiments performed from the late 19th century to the present day describing how the two major neural mechanisms "central command" and "exercise pressor reflex" and their involvement in "resetting" are reviewed. These historical experiments have resulted in the development of a hypothetical model identifying the major factors involved in baroreflex resetting, and these factors are described. The four manuscripts presented in these proceedings address a new set of questions. These new questions address the importance of the baroreflex control of muscle sympathetic nerve activity and vasomotor tone in the regulation of blood flow, not only in the systemic vasculature but also in the cerebral and cutaneous vasculatures.
Department of Integrative Physiology, University of North Texas Health Science Center, Fort Worth, TX
Address for correspondence: Peter B. Raven, Ph.D., Department of Integrative Physiology, University of North Texas Health Science Center, 3500 Camp Bowie Boulevard, Fort Worth, TX, 76107; E-mail:firstname.lastname@example.org.
Submitted for publication December 2007.
Accepted for publication January 2008.