backResearcher Profile

William K. Milsom

Job Title: Professor
Employer: Department of Zoology, University of British Columbia
Place of Birth: Toronto, Ontario, Canada
Public School attended: Regal Road, Toronto; Sir John A. MacDonald, London; Canadian Armed Forces School, Soest, Germany
High School attended: Downsview Collegiate Institute, Downsview; Queen Elizabeth High School, Edmonton
Further Education: University of Alberta (B.Sc.), University of Washington (M.Sc.), University of British Columbia (Ph.D).
Geographic focus of research: British Columbia, Britain, Brazil

Brief synopsis of current research:
The focus of my research is on comparative cardio-respiratory physiology. I am interested in the ways in which animals are adapted to live in different environments. Amongst other things, I study cardiovascular and respiratory adaptations of animals to fresh and salt water and these studies include investigations of various species of fish as well as of marine mammals. Our interest is in the ways in which animals adjust ventilation, gas exchange, gas transport in the blood and exchange of gas between blood and tissues so that their metabolic needs are met regardless of the extremes of the environment in which they live.

Mailing address:
Department of Zoology, University of British Columbia, 6270 University Blvd., Vancouver, B.C., V6T 1Z4, Canada
Phone: (604)822-2310; Fax: (604)822-2416

Recent Publications:

Milsom, W., Castellini, M. R. Berger, D. Costa, D. Jones, J. Castellini, L. Rea, S. Bharma and M. Harris. 1996. Hypoxia, hypercapnia and cardiorespiratory patterns of sleep-associated apnea in elephant seal pups. Am. J. Physiol. 40:R1017-R1024.

Powell, F.L., G.S. Mitchell and W.K. Milsom. 1998. Frontiers in Respiration Physiology: Time domains of the hypoxic ventilatory response. Respir Physiol. 112:123-134.

Milsom, W.K. 1998. Review: Phylogeny of respiratory chemoreceptor function in vertebrates. Zoology - Analysis of Complex Systems 101:316-332.

Milsom, W.K., M.E. Zimmer and M.B. Harris. 1999. Review: Regulation of cardiac rhythm in hibernation. Comp. Biochem. Physiol. A 124:383-391.

Sundin, L., S.G. Reid, A.L. Kalinin, F.T. Rantin and W.K. Milsom. 1998. Cardiovascular and respiratory reflexes in the tropical fish, traira (Hoplias malabaricus):I: O2 chemoreceptors. Respir. Physiol.116:181-199.

Canada has a long and illustrious history as one of the leading countries engaged in aquatic research. The study of the physiological mechanisms: that allow fish to survive in temperatures below freezing, that allow fish to live in oxygen poor waters or CO2 rich waters, that allow fish to air-breathe, and that allow marine mammals to dive for extended periods are among the many fascinating questions that have attracted me to this line of research. While answers to many of these questions have implications for fisheries and conservation management, they also have implications for medical research to say nothing of the fascination they hold in their own right.