Capillary-oxygenation-level-dependent near-infrared spectrometry in frontal lobe of humans

Peter Rasmussen, Ellen A. Dawson, Lars Nybo, Johannes J. Van Lieshout, Niels H. Secher, Albert Gjedde

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

158 Scopus citations


Brain function requires oxygen and maintenance of brain capillary oxygenation is important. We evaluated how faithfully frontal lobe near-infrared spectroscopy (NIRS) follows haemoglobin saturation (SCap) and how calculated mitochondrial oxygen tension (PMitoO2) influences motor performance. Twelve healthy subjects (20 to 29 years), supine and seated, inhaled O2 air-mixtures (10% to 100%) with and without added 5% carbon dioxide and during hyperventilation. Two measures of frontal lobe oxygenation by NIRS (NIRO-200 and INVOS) were compared with capillary oxygen saturation (SCap) as calculated from the O2 content of brachial arterial and right internal jugular venous blood. At control S Cap (78%±4%; mean±s.d.) was halfway between the arterial (98%±1%) and jugular venous oxygenation (SvO 2; 61%±6%). Both NIRS devices monitored SCap (P<0.001) within ∼5% as SvO2 increased from 39%±5% to 79%±7% with an increase in the transcranial ultrasound Doppler determined middle cerebral artery flow velocity from 29±8 to 65±15 cm/sec. When SCap fell below ∼70% with reduced flow and inspired oxygen tension, PMitoO2 decreased (P<0.001) and brain lactate release increased concomitantly (P<0.001). Handgrip strength correlated with the measured (NIRS) and calculated capillary oxygenation values as well as with PMitoO2 (r> 0.74; P<0.05). These results show that NIRS is an adequate cerebral capillary-oxygenation-level-dependent (COLD) measure during manipulation of cerebral blood flow or inspired oxygen tension, or both, and suggest that motor performance correlates with the frontal lobe COLD signal.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1082-1093
Number of pages12
JournalJournal of Cerebral Blood Flow and Metabolism
Issue number5
StatePublished - May 16 2007
Externally publishedYes


  • Activation
  • Cerebral blood flow
  • Hypercapnia
  • Hypocapnia
  • Hypoxia
  • Jugular vein

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neurology
  • Clinical Neurology
  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine


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