Effect of short-term strenuous exercise on erythrocyte 2,3-diphosphoglycerate in untrained men: a time-course study

  • Omokere E. Odje
  • James M. Ramsey
Original Article


The literature on the response of erythrocyte 2,3-diphosphoglycerate (2,3-DPG) following exercise is replete with inconsistencies, and recent studies have shown that the time of blood sampling during and following exercise, as well as the duration of exercise, are important in evaluating the response of 2,3-DPG. Experiments were designed to measure the response of 2,3-DPG following short-term strenuous exercise in two groups of untrained men. Twelve men, 19–22 years old (study 1), exercised on a bicycle ergometer at 122.5 W for 10 min and red blood cell (RBC) 2,3-DPG was measured at 0 and 50 min following exercise. The level of 2,3-DPG (μmol · ml−1 RBC) increased after exercise (P < 0.05), but this increase was not significant when 2,3-DPG was expressed as mol · mol−1 hemoglobin (Hb). However, following 50min of rest, 2,3-DPG (mol · mol−1 Hb) decreased significantly. In a second group (study 2), nine other men, aged 18–19 years, exercised at the same workload for 15 min and 2,3-DPG was measured at 0, 30, 60, 180, and 330 min respectively after exercise, and no significant mean changes in the level of the phosphate were observed. Findings from these studies suggest that 2,3-DPG does not provide a compensatory adjustment to facilitate oxygen delivery in the hypoxia of short-term strenuous exercise in untrained males immediately following exercise and when recovery intervals of up to 330min are also examined. It is suggested that 2,3-DPG be reported as mol · mol−1 Hb, since the phosphate exists on Hb in an equimolar ratio in normal physiological states.

Key words

Acute exercise 2,3-Diphosphoglycerate 2,3-bisphosphoglycerate Erythrocytes 


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 1995

Authors and Affiliations

  • Omokere E. Odje
    • 1
  • James M. Ramsey
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of BiologyUniversity of DaytonDaytonUSA
  2. 2.Biology DepartmentCentral State UniversityWilberforceUSA

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