Immune Changes in Humans During Cold Exposure: Effects of Prior Heating and Exercise


  1. Brenner, I.K.
  2. Castellani, J.W.
  3. Gabaree, C.
  4. Young, A.J.
  5. Zamecnik, J.
  6. and others
Corporate Authors
Defence and Civil Inst of Environmental Medicine, Downsview ONT (CAN)
Cold exposure may increase an organism's susceptibility to infection. Cold-induced decrements in immunosurveillance can be a particular problem for military personnel who must pursue physical activities in cold environments. Upper respiratory tract infections appear to be the main cause of illness Studies of sustained military operations in the Canadian Arctic, also, have reported an increased incidence and severity of upper respiratory tract infections during patrols involving high levels of energy expenditure and exposure to cold conditions both day and night. As the effective accomplishment of military operations may depend on a high level of human performance, maintenance of health is essential in situations, whre troops are exposed to adverse environmental conditions. This study examined the immunological responses to cold exposure toghether with the effects of pretreatment with exercise or passive heating, simulating a combat scenario of cold exposure following an acute bout of strenuous physical exertion with elevated core temperature. On four separate occasions, healthy male military recruits sat for 2 h in a climatic chamber maintained at 5C. Prior to exposure, subjects participated in one of four pre-treatment conditions. For the control condition, subjects remained seated in a thermoneutral (35C) water bath for 1 h. TRUNCATED
Immunostimulating;Immune response;Immune suppression;Passive heating;Immune function;Leukocytes;Natural killer cells;Interleukin-6
Report Number
DCIEM-98-P-65 — Paper
Date of publication
08 Sep 1999
Number of Pages
Hardcopy;Document Image stored on Optical Disk

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