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Tuttle Award: Ross Pollock

July 07, 2022

Tuttle Award: Ross Pollock

Established in memory of Col. Arnold D. Tuttle, USAF, MC. Awarded annually for original research that has made the most significant contribution toward the solution of a challenging problem in aerospace medicine and which was published in Aerospace Medicine and Human Performance. Sponsored by KBR.

A white man with blond hair in a green plaid button-up shirt is shown against a neutral light tan background.Ross Pollock, B.Sc., M.Sc., Ph.D., is the 2022 winner of the Arnold D. Tuttle Award for his role as the lead author of “Pulmonary effects of sustained periods of high-G acceleration relevant to suborbital spaceflight” published in the journal in August 2021 [Aerosp Med Hum Perform. 2021; 92(8):633-641]. Dr. Pollock and his co-authors examined the pulmonary effects of sustained periods of high G acceleration to discover the clinical implications for medically susceptible individuals who might take part in commercial suborbital spaceflights. Using 2-minute centrifuge exposures, they studied subjects using advanced respiratory techniques to measure regional distribution of ventilation in the lungs, neural respiratory drive, and work of breathing. They also measured arterial blood gases. They found that acceleration caused hypoxemia which worsened with increasing magnitude and duration of chest-to-back G. There were progressive increases in the work of breathing and neural respiratory drive. The authors recommended further investigation as these effects could be clinically important in medically susceptible passengers.
   Dr. Pollock is currently a Lecturer in Aerospace Physiology in the Centre of Human & Applied Physiological Sciences (CHAPS) of King’s College London and is the Co-Director of the M.Sc./P.G.Dip. in Aerospace Medicine. He holds a B.Sc. (First class, Hons.) in Sport and Exercise Science and an M.Sc. in Bioengineering from the University of Strathclyde. He completed his Ph.D., entitled “Physiological and Clinical Studies on the Effects of Whole Body Vibration” at King’s College London. As part of his post-doctoral studies, he investigated the healthy ageing process through the study of highly active older adults. Following this, Ross worked at QinetiQ in their Flight Physiology Group. During his time at QinetiQ, he primarily worked on trials investigating the effects of long duration acceleration on the body and also on projects investigating aircrew performance in the presence of hypoxia and thermal stress in addition to understand musculoskeletal injury in aircrew.
   From a research perspective Ross is interested in understanding the effects that long duration acceleration, studied using human centrifuges, can have on the body and how we can protect and enhance aircrew performance in these environments. Furthermore, he also conducts research into healthy ageing and the physiology that contributes to our decline in function and muscle mass as we age. In particular, he is interested in the role that exercise and (in)activity have in maintaining our function and performance for both healthy and clinical populations. His awards and honors include King’s College London’s Education Award for Student Support, an Experimental Physiology Inaugural Review Prize, Journal of Physiology Editorial Board Fellowship, and serving as reviewing editor for Frontiers in Aging: Molecular Mechanisms of Aging. He is a member of the Physiological Society and the Aerospace Medical Association.