Pentraxin3 and high-sensitive C-reactive protein are independent inflammatory markers released during high-intensity exercise

Eur J Appl Physiol. 2010 Nov;110(5):905-13. doi: 10.1007/s00421-010-1572-x. Epub 2010 Jul 17.


High-intensity exercise shares similarities with acute phase responses of inflammatory diseases. We investigated the influences of acute exercise on inflammatory markers, plasma pentraxin3 (PTX3) and serum high-sensitive C-reactive protein (CRP) (hsCRP). Nine healthy male subjects (41 ± 3 years old) participated. Each subject performed three types of exercise; ergometer exercise at 70% workload of anaerobic threshold (AT) for 30 min (70% AT exercise), peak ergometer exercise (peak EX, 20 watt increase/min until fatigue) and resistance exercises of 70% 1 RM (70% RE) until exhaustion. We measured plasma PTX3, serum hsCRP, lactate, noradrenaline (NOR), white blood cells (WBC), interleukin-6 (IL-6) and myeloperoxidase (MPO), a marker of neutrophil degranulation. The effects of exercise on intracellular PTX3 and MPO in neutrophils were also investigated, by using flow cytometry analysis. Circulating PTX3 and hsCRP significantly increased immediately after 70% RE and peak EX, while they did not increase after 70% AT exercise. The exercise-induced fold increase in PTX3 and hsCRP relative to the resting level was positively correlated with the changes in WBC, NOR, lactate and MPO. The exercise-induced fold increase in IL-6 was positively correlated with that in NOR, but not with that in PTX3 and hsCRP. Neutrophils isolated immediately after 70% RE, but not 70% AT exercise, exhibited lower mean fluorescence for PTX3 and MPO than those from pre-exercise blood. These results provide the evidence that high-intensity exercises significantly increase circulatory PTX3 as well as hsCRP. The release from peripheral neutrophils is suggested to be involved in the exercise-induced plasma PTX3 increase.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Biomarkers / blood
  • Biomarkers / metabolism
  • C-Reactive Protein / analysis
  • C-Reactive Protein / metabolism
  • C-Reactive Protein / physiology*
  • Ergometry
  • Exercise / physiology*
  • Humans
  • Inflammation / metabolism
  • Inflammation / physiopathology*
  • Interleukin-6 / blood
  • Lactic Acid / blood
  • Leukocyte Count
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Neutrophils / chemistry
  • Norepinephrine / blood
  • Peroxidase / blood
  • Resistance Training
  • Serum Amyloid P-Component / analysis
  • Serum Amyloid P-Component / metabolism
  • Serum Amyloid P-Component / physiology*


  • Biomarkers
  • Interleukin-6
  • Serum Amyloid P-Component
  • PTX3 protein
  • Lactic Acid
  • C-Reactive Protein
  • Peroxidase
  • Norepinephrine