Salivary Lymphocyte Responses Following Acute Anaerobic Exercise in a Cool Environment

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Carlson, LA, Lawrence, MA, LeCavalier, K, and Koch, AJ. Salivary lymphocyte responses following acute anaerobic exercise in a cool environment. J Strength Cond Res 31(5): 1236–1240, 2017—The purpose of this study was to examine the impact of anaerobic training on salivary lymphocytes (s-LYMPH), and further determine whether these responses differ between cool vs. thermoneutral environments. Nine lightly clothed (∼0.3 clo) volunteers (7/2 women/men: age, 21 ± 1 years; height, 168.7 ± 7.3 cm; weight, 66.4 ± 8.4 kg; body fat, 20.6 ± 7.6%) completed speed, agility, and quickness (SAQ) sessions in both warm (18.9° C; Biddeford) and cool (10.4° C; Thorsmörk) temperatures. The SAQ sessions consisted of 3 trials of 20-m sprints, 40-m sprints, t-tests, and box drills, and two 300-yd shuttle runs in both conditions. Saliva samples via passive drool were collected at baseline, immediately postexercise, and after 2 hours of recovery. The s-LYMPH increased (p < 0.001) immediately postexercise, followed by a decrease (p < 0.001) below baseline values after 2 hours of recovery in both environments. The s-LYMPH counts were lower (p < 0.001) for the cool environment than for the thermoneutral environment. The s-LYMPH counts increased postexercise, followed by a decrease after 2 hours of recovery regardless of environment. Acute anaerobic exercise induced transient changes in s-LYMPH counts similar to that observed in peripheral blood. Compared with baseline measures, changes in s-LYMPH were of a smaller magnitude after exercise in the cool environment compared with thermoneutral environment. In summary, there is no indication that exercise in the cool environment presented a greater challenge to the subjects' immunity. Rather, these data indicate exercise in a cool environment produces smaller fluctuations in salivary immune cells compared with resting levels.

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