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Papers of the Week

Papers: 15 May 2021 - 21 May 2021

Human Studies

2021 May 10

Life Sci

Heart rate and heart rate variability as outcomes and longitudinal moderators of treatment for pain across follow-up in Veterans with Gulf War illness.


Mathersul DC, Dixit K, Avery TJ, Schulz-Heik JR, Zeitzer JM, Mahoney LA, Cho RH, Bayley PJ
Life Sci. 2021 May 10:119604.
PMID: 33984356.


Accumulating evidence suggests Gulf War illness (GWI) is characterised by autonomic nervous system dysfunction (higher heart rate [HR], lower heart rate variability [HRV]). Yoga – an ancient mind-body practice combining mindfulness, breathwork, and physical postures – is proposed to improve autonomic dysfunction yet this remains untested in GWI. We aimed to determine (i) whether HR and HRV improve among Veterans with GWI receiving either yoga or cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) for pain; and (ii) whether baseline autonomic functioning predicts treatment-related pain outcomes across follow-up.