A Physiolomics Approach to Reveal Systemic Organ Dynamics in a Rodent

Biol Pharm Bull. 2019;42(7):1059-1063. doi: 10.1248/bpb.b19-00182.


The central nervous system controls the activity states of the peripheral organs in response to various environmental changes. However, the physiological interactions across multiple organs remain largely unknown. Recently, we have developed an electrophysiological recording system that simultaneously captures neuronal population activity patterns in the brain, heartbeat signals, muscle contraction signals, respiratory signals, and vagus nerve action potentials in freely moving rodents. This paper summarizes several recent insights obtained from this recording system, including the observations that some but not all brain activity patterns are associated with peripheral organ activity in a behavioral test, and that functions across cortical networks can predict stress-induced changes in cardiac function in rats. The evidence suggests that adding information on peripheral physiological signals to behavioral data assists in a more accurate estimation of animals' mental states. The concept of such a research approach opens a new field of large-scale analysis of systemic physiological signals, termed "physiolomics," which is expected to unveil further physiological issues involving mind-body associations in health and disease.

Keywords: behavior; central–peripheral association; heart rate; local field potential.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Anxiety / physiopathology
  • Brain / physiology
  • Electrophysiological Phenomena*
  • Electrophysiology / methods*
  • Mice
  • Rats
  • Stress, Physiological / physiology*
  • Vagus Nerve / physiology