Table of Contents
ISRN Nutrition
Volume 2014 (2014), Article ID 561401, 10 pages
Research Article

Influence of Hydration Status on Changes in Plasma Cortisol, Leukocytes, and Antigen-Stimulated Cytokine Production by Whole Blood Culture following Prolonged Exercise

School of Sport, Exercise and Health Sciences, Loughborough University, Ashby Road, Loughborough, Leicestershire LE11 3TU, UK

Received 6 January 2014; Accepted 11 February 2014; Published 12 March 2014

Academic Editors: G. Davison, M. G. Nikolaidis, and K. Stokes

Copyright © 2014 Ida S. Svendsen et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Elevated antigen-stimulated anti-inflammatory cytokine production appears to be a risk factor for upper respiratory tract illness in athletes. The purpose of this study was to determine the effects of prolonged exercise and hydration on antigen-stimulated cytokine production. Twelve healthy males cycled for 120 min at 60% on two occasions, either euhydrated or moderately hypohydrated (induced by fluid restriction for 24 h). Blood samples were collected before and after exercise and following 2 h recovery for determination of cell counts, plasma cortisol, and in vitro antigen-stimulated cytokine production by whole blood culture. Fluid restriction resulted in mean body mass loss of 1.3% and 3.9% before and after exercise, respectively. Exercise elicited a significant leukocytosis and elevated plasma cortisol, with no differences between trials. IL-6 production was significantly reduced 2 h postexercise ( ), while IL-10 production was elevated postexercise ( ). IFN-γ and IL-2 production tended to decrease postexercise. No significant effect of hydration status was observed for the measured variables. Prolonged exercise appears to result in augmented anti-inflammatory cytokine release in response to antigen challenge, possibly coupled with acute suppression of proinflammatory cytokine production, corresponding with studies using mitogen or endotoxin as stimulant. Moderate hypohydration does not appear to influence these changes.