Variance in the Acute Inflammatory Response to Prolonged Cycling Is Linked to Exercise Intensity

  • Nieman D
  • Konrad M
  • Henson D
 et al. 
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This study investigated the influence of age, body composition, physical
fitness, training volume and intensity, and underlying systemic
inflammation on exercise-induced inflammation and innate immune function
in a heterogeneous group of cyclists. Subjects included 31 male cyclists
(mean +/- standard deviation, age 38.8 +/- 10.6 years, body fat 17.8%
+/- 5.6%, VO(2max) 55.8 +/- 8.4 mL kg(-1) min(-1)) who cycled for 1.75
h at 60% watts(max) followed by a 10-km time trial (18.3 +/- 0.3 min).
Blood samples were collected pre-, post-, and 1-h-postexercise, and
analyzed for WBCs, 9 cytokines {[}interleukin (IL)-6, tumor necrosis
factor-alpha, granulocyte-macrophage colony-stimulating factor,
interferon-gamma, IL-1 beta, IL-2, IL-8, IL-10, and IL-12p70], and
granulocyte and monocyte phagocytosis (GR-PHAG and MO-PHAG) and
oxidative burst activity (GR-OBA and MO-OBA). Exercise-induced changes
varied widely, with significant increases measured for 8 of 9 cytokines,
GR-PHAG (mean change 99%) (95% confidence limits, 69%, 128%) and
MO-PHAG (43%) (28%, 58%), and WBC (160%) (133%, 187%), and
decreases for GR-OBA (-30%) (-43%, -16%) and MO-OBA (-23%) (-36%,
-10%). Correlation and stepwise regression analysis revealed that
changes in these variables were not related to age, body fat percentage,
VO(2max), training volume, or pre-exercise C-reactive protein.
Performance measures, specifically the average heart rate and rating of
perceived exertion, were correlated with changes in several variables,
including IL-8 (r = 0.68 and 0.67, respectively, P < 0.001) and IL-6 (r
= 0.51, P = 0.004, and r = 0.46, P = 0.011, respectively). In summary,
variance in exercise-induced inflammation and innate immunity in male
cyclists in response to 2 h of endurance exercise is best explained by
exercise intensity.

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  • David C Nieman

  • Manuela Konrad

  • Dru A Henson

  • Krista Kennerly

  • R Andrew Shanely

  • Sandra J Wallner-Liebmann

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