BIOPAC® Systems, Inc. Logo

MEAP and BIOPAC used to quantify rapid changes in cardiovascular state

The new issue of Psychophysiology has a study “Quantifying rapid changes in cardiovascular state with a moving ensemble average” using MEAP for preprocessing/analysis and BIOPAC hardware and software for data collection, display, and storage. The proof of concept study demonstrates a viable method for the adoption of ICG measures across the field of psychophysiology.

    • MEAP (moving ensemble analysis pipeline) was used for preprocessing and analysis of cardiovascular data
    • ECG was collected using an ECG100C amplifier, ICG using a NICO100C-MRI amplifier, and BP using the NIBP100D CNAP Monitor 500. Data were integrated using an MP Research System with AcqKnowledge software.


MEAP, the moving ensemble analysis pipeline, is a new open-source tool designed to perform multi-subject preprocessing and analysis of cardiovascular data, including electrocardiogram (ECG), impedance cardiogram (ICG), and continuous blood pressure (BP). In addition to traditional ensemble averaging, MEAP implements a moving ensemble averaging method that allows for the continuous estimation of indices related to cardiovascular state, including cardiac output (CO), pre-ejection period (PEP), heart rate variability (HRV), and total peripheral resistance (TPR), among others. Here, we define the moving ensemble technique mathematically, highlighting its differences from fixed window ensemble averaging. We describe MEAP’s interface and features for signal processing, artifact correction, and cardiovascular-based fMRI analysis. We demonstrate the accuracy of MEAP’s novel B point detection algorithm on a large collection of hand-labeled ICG waveforms. As a proof of concept, two subjects completed a series of four physical and cognitive tasks (cold pressor, Valsalva maneuver, video game, random dot kinetogram) on 3 separate days while ECG, ICG, and BP were recorded. Critically, the moving ensemble method reliably captures the rapid cyclical cardiovascular changes related to the baroreflex during the Valsalva maneuver and the classic cold pressor response. Cardiovascular measures were seen to vary considerably within repetitions of the same cognitive task for each individual, suggesting that a carefully designed paradigm could be used to capture fast-acting event-related changes in cardiovascular state.

• See “Cieslak MRyan WSBabenko V, et al. Quantifying rapid changes in cardiovascular state with a moving ensemble averagePsychophysiology2017;00:000000″ at

The inaugural T4 Human Physiology Conference this past summer featured individual sessions from three of the authors—Cieslak, Kelsey, and Blascovich—and industry partner CNSystems for NIBP Continuous Noninvasive Blood Pressure.


Spotlight On
distance learning device

Practical Lab Kit for Remote Learning

BSL Home enables students to conduct hands-on physiology labs in the safety of their own home, dorm room, or any remote location while social distancing and stay-at-home orders keep them out of campus labs Complete lab solution for instructors and students to preserve practical lab experience! For instructors—BSL Home makes it easy for instructors to continue […]

View All
Latest News

BIOPAC Now Offers Practical Lab Instruction for Remote Students to Learn Physiology during the Coronavirus Pandemic

Distance Learning Solutions for a Hands-on Lab Experience GOLETA, California (May 21, 2020) – BIOPAC Systems announced a new solution for university level educators seeking solutions for practical lab learning in an independent setting due to stay-at-home restrictions and social distancing rules. The premier life science education system, Biopac Student Lab, has been expanded with […]

New Citations | A Physiological Perspective to Stress Management and Mental Health

Musical Intervention as Stress Regulation There is no question that music can be beneficial in regulating mood and psychological states, but what type of musical intervention assists the greatest in stress reduction? Researchers turn to physiological signals to compare the stress reduction effects of two types of musical interventions: music listening and musical improvisation. Stressor […]

Read All
Request a Demonstration
Request a Demonstration