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Effects of Exercise on Systemic Inflammatory, Coagulatory, and Cardiac Autonomic Parameters in an Inhalational Exposure Study

Donde, Aneesh BS; Wong, Hofer BS; Frelinger, Jessica BS; Power, Karron MD; Balmes, John R. MD; Arjomandi, Mehrdad MD

Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine: April 2012 - Volume 54 - Issue 4 - p 466–470
doi: 10.1097/JOM.0b013e318246f1d4
Original Articles

Background: Intermittent moderate-intensity exercise is used in human inhalational exposure studies to increase the effective dose of air pollutants.

Objective: To investigate the inflammatory, coagulatory, and autonomic effects of intermittent moderate-intensity exercise.

Methods: We measured hemodynamic, electrocardiographic, inflammatory, and coagulatory parameters in peripheral blood of 25 healthy subjects across an exercise protocol that included running on a treadmill or pedaling a cycle ergometer for 30 minutes every hour over 4 hours in a climate-controlled chamber with a target ventilation of 20 L/min/m2 body surface area.

Results: Intermittent moderate-intensity exercise induced a systemic proinflammatory response characterized by increases in leukocyte counts, C-reactive protein, monocyte chemoattractant protein–1, and interleukin-6, but did not change coagulation tendency or heart rate variability.

Conclusion: Interpretation of pollutant-induced inflammatory responses in inhalational exposure studies should account for signals and noises caused by exercise, especially when the effect size is small.

Supplemental Digital Content is available in the text.

From the Human Exposure Laboratory, Division of Occupational and Environmental Medicine (Mr Donde, Mr Wong, Ms Frelinger, and Drs Power, Balmes, and Arjomandi); Division of Pulmonary and Critical Care Medicine, Department of Medicine (Ms Frelinger and Drs Balmes and Arjomandi), University of California San Francisco, Calif.; School of Public Health (Dr Balmes), University of California Berkeley, Calif.; and Pulmonary Research Group, Veterans Affairs Medical Center (Ms Frelinger and Dr Arjomandi), San Francisco, Calif.

Address correspondence to: Mehrdad Arjomandi, MD, Division of Pulmonary and Critical Care Medicine, University of California San Francisco, San Francisco Veterans Affairs Medical Center, Bldg 203, Room 3A-128, Mailstop 111-D, 4150 Clement St, San Francisco, CA 94121 (

This study was funded by California Air Resources Board, NIH/NHLBI K23 HL083099, the Northern California Institute for Research and Education, and the University of California San Francisco Cardiovascular Research Institute Faculty Development Funds.

Disclosure: The authors declare no conflict of interest.

Supplemental digital content is available for this article. Direct URL citation appears in the printed text and is provided in the HTML and PDF versions of this article on the journal's Web site (

©2012The American College of Occupational and Environmental Medicine