Breathing and locomotion: Comparative anatomy, morphology and function

Wilfried Klein, Jonathan R. Codd

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


    Using specialized respiratory structures such as gills, lungs and or a tracheal system, animals take up oxygen and release carbon dioxide. The efficiency of gas exchange, however, may be constrained by the morphology of the respiratory organ itself as well as by other aspects of an animal's physiology such as feeding, circulation or locomotion. Herein we discuss some aspects of the functional link between the respiratory and locomotor systems, such as gill morphology of sharks as a factor limiting maximum aerobic scope, respiratory constraints among legless lizards, lung morphology of testudines, trade-offs between locomotion and respiration among birds, reconstruction of the respiratory system of sauropods, respiration of mice during locomotion as well as some aspects of gas exchange among insects. Data covering such a broad spectrum of interactions between the locomotor and respiratory systems shall allow us to place breathing and locomotion into a wider context of evolution of oxygen. © 2010 Elsevier B.V.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)S26-S32
    JournalRespiratory Physiology and Neurobiology
    Publication statusPublished - Sept 2010


    • Evolutionary constraints
    • Locomotion
    • Respiration


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