The inflammatory response to a wheelchair half-marathon in people with a spinal cord injury - the role of autonomic function
journal contributionposted on 15.03.2019, 09:47 by Sven Hoekstra, Christof Leicht, Yoshi-Ichiro Kamijo, Tokio Kinoshita, Ben T. Stephenson, Vicky Goosey-Tolfrey, Nicolette Bishop, Fumihiro Tajima
This study investigates the relationship between autonomic function and the inflammatory response to a wheelchair half-marathon in people with a spinal cord injury (SCI). Seventeen wheelchair athletes with a cervical SCI (CSCI, N = 7) and without CSCI (NON-CSCI, N = 10) participated in a wheelchair half-marathon. Blood was taken prior, post and 1 h post-race to determine the concentrations of adrenaline, noradrenaline, extracellular heat shock protein 72 (eHsp72) and interleukin-6 (IL-6). A sit-up tilt test was performed to assess autonomic function at rest. CSCI showed a lower supine ratio of the low and high frequency power of the variability in RR intervals (LF/HF RRI, p = 0.038), total and low frequency power of the systolic blood pressure variability (TP SBP, p < 0.001; LF SBP, p = 0.005) compared to NON-CSCI. Following the race, catecholamine concentrations increased only in NON-CSCI (p < 0.036). The increase in IL-6 post-race was larger in NON-CSCI (p = 0.040). Post-race catecholamine levels explained 60% of the variance in the IL-6 response (r = 0.77, p = 0.040), which was further increased when the resting autonomic function indices were added to the regression model (R2 > 81%, p < 0.012). In summary, the dampened acute inflammatory response to a wheelchair half-marathon in CSCI was strongly associated with the autonomic dysfunction present in this group.
The authors are grateful for the financial support provided by the Peter Harrison Centre and the Kyoten Research Center of Sports for Persons with Impairments.
- Sport, Exercise and Health Sciences