Two accomplished integrative physiology scientists from the University of Colorado Boulder are launching a new research project in collaboration with Dr. Kayla Nuss and the Creative Team from Klein Buendel. The project will design and assess the feasibility of the using a smartphone app to help deliver a high-resistance inspiratory muscle strength training (IMST) program for improving blood pressure and reducing cardiovascular disease risk in midlife and older adults.
Douglas Seals, PhD, is a Distinguished Professor of Integrative Physiology (Boulder Campus) and Medicine (Anschutz Medical Campus) at the University of Colorado. He is also the Director of the Integrative Physiology of Aging Laboratory. He earned his doctoral degree in Applied Exercise Physiology from the University of Wisconsin in 1981. In his 35+ years of academics and research, Dr. Seals has become an expert on lifestyle and/or pharmacological interventions to improve cardiovascular function. His areas of research interest include cardiovascular aging, such as changes in systolic blood pressure, large artery stiffness, and vascular endothelial function; biological and lifestyle factors that influence cardiovascular aging; the integrative (molecular to systemic) mechanisms that mediate cardiovascular aging and its modulation by biological and lifestyle factors; and interventions to improve adverse physiological changes with aging, including cardiovascular dysfunction, reductions in motor performance, and impairments in cognitive function. His research has been continuously funded by research grants from the National Institutes of Health, particularly the National Institute on Aging, since 1986. Dr. Seals founded an NIH Clinical Translational Research Center at the University of Colorado Boulder in 1999 as a core facility for conducting biomedical research on human subjects. It was in this lab that Dr. Seals and Dr. Daniel Craighead (see below) established the efficacy of IMST for lowering blood pressure in a traditional clinical research setting. In 2004, Dr. Seals received a 10-year MERIT Award from the National Institute on Aging to support his research on cardiovascular aging. In 2008, he was named a Professor of Distinction in the College of Arts and Sciences at the University of Colorado Boulder. In 2013, he was named an Edward F. Adolph Distinguished Lecturer by the American Physiological Society for his work in the physiology of aging.
Daniel Craighead, PhD, is an Assistant Research Professor in the Department of Integrative Physiology at the University of Colorado Boulder. He earned his doctoral degree in Kinesiology from Penn State University in 2017, and completed a post-doctoral fellowship in the Integrative Physiology of Aging Laboratory at the University of Colorado Boulder in 2020. Dr. Craighead is a specialist in the study of IMST for lowering blood pressure. Dr. Craighead conducted the initial R21-supported clinical trial on IMST, upon which the new research project with Klein Buendel is based. The Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) Phase I study is supported by the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute, and will design and assess the feasibility of a smartphone app for delivering an IMST program and improving blood pressure in midlife and older adults. The program will provide instruction and promote adherence to the IMST intervention. Ultimately, the app will provide for widespread dissemination and adoption of an innovative tool to easily lower blood pressure and reduce cardiovascular disease risk. Dr. Craighead also has been the Principal Investigator on a study assessing the efficacy of nicotinamide riboside, a dietary supplement, for lowering blood pressure and improving vascular function in older adults, among other research projects.