European Journal of Applied Physiology and Occupational Physiology

, Volume 79, Issue 1, pp 93–98

Effects of elevated plasma noradrenaline concentration on the immune system in humans

Authors

  • M. Kappel
    • The Copenhagen Muscle Research Centre, Rigshospitalet, National University Hospital, Tagensvej 20, DK-2200 Copenhagen N, Denmark
  • T. D. Poulsen
    • Department of Infectious Diseases, Ringshospitalet, National University Hospital, Copenhagen, Denmark
  • H. Galbo
    • The Copenhagen Muscle Research Centre, Rigshospitalet, National University Hospital, Tagensvej 20, DK-2200 Copenhagen N, Denmark
  • B. K. Pedersen
    • The Copenhagen Muscle Research Centre, Rigshospitalet, National University Hospital, Tagensvej 20, DK-2200 Copenhagen N, Denmark
ORIGINAL ARTICLE

DOI: 10.1007/s004210050479

Cite this article as:
Kappel, M., Poulsen, T., Galbo, H. et al. Eur J Appl Physiol (1998) 79: 93. doi:10.1007/s004210050479

Abstract

This study was designed to test the hypothesis that elevated plasma noradrenaline concentrations contribute to the exercise-induced modulation of the activity and percentage of the natural killer (NK) cells, and the leucocyte concentration. In a single blind, controlled, cross-over study, eight healthy men had noradrenaline infused for 1 h and achieved plasma noradrenaline concentrations comparable (20-fold increment) to those previously observed in cycle ergometer exercise (75% of maximal oxygen uptake for 1 h). The noradrenaline infusion increased the unstimulated, the interleukin-2 and interferon-α stimulated NK cell activity, and the percentage of CD16+ cells. The natural lytic activity per CD16+ cell however, did not change. The concentration of neutrophils, lymphocytes and CD16+ cells increased during the infusion. The neutrophil concentration remained elevated 2 h after infusion, at which time the lymphocyte count was back to normal. These results are comparable with the effects in the exercise model, and it is suggested that the augmented plasma noradrenaline concentrations, seen during extreme exercise, may participate in the exercise-induced immune changes.

Keywords ExerciseNoradrenalineNatural killer cellsLymphocytesNeutrophils
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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 1998