NYT | Why Deep Breathing May Keep Us Calm

This article was recently published in the New York Times featuring a collaborative project that Kevin led while researching at Stanford, aimed at teasing apart the peptidergic circuit responsible for sighing. The study found that a molecularly defined subpopulation of neurons expressing both Cdh9 and Dbx1 in the preBötC play a key role in generalized alertness, attention, and stress. Genetic ablation did not affect normal breathing but resulted in the animals being exceptionally calm, even during stressful circumstances. This would suggest that the breathing center is capable of direct and dramatic influence on higher-order brain function.