Live High, Train Low - Influence on Resting and Post-Exercise Hepcidin Levels

Scand J Med Sci Sports. 2017 Jul;27(7):704-713. doi: 10.1111/sms.12685. Epub 2016 Mar 31.

Abstract

The post-exercise hepcidin response during prolonged (>2 weeks) hypoxic exposure is not well understood. We compared plasma hepcidin levels 3 h after exercise [6 × 1000 m at 90% of maximal aerobic running velocity (vVO2max )] performed in normoxia and normobaric hypoxia (3000 m simulate altitude) 1 week before, and during 14 days of normobaric hypoxia [196.2 ± 25.6 h (median: 200.8 h; range: 154.3-234.8 h) at 3000 m simulated altitude] in 10 well-trained distance runners (six males, four females). Venous blood was also analyzed for hepcidin after 2 days of normobaric hypoxia. Hemoglobin mass (Hbmass ) was measured via CO rebreathing 1 week before and after 14 days of hypoxia. Hepcidin was suppressed after 2 (Cohen's d = -2.3, 95% confidence interval: [-2.9, -1.6]) and 14 days of normobaric hypoxia (d = -1.6 [-2.6, -0.6]). Hepcidin increased from baseline, 3 h post-exercise in normoxia (d = 0.8 [0.2, 1.3]) and hypoxia (d = 0.6 [0.3, 1.0]), both before and after exposure (normoxia: d = 0.7 [0.3, 1.2]; hypoxia: d = 1.3 [0.4, 2.3]). In conclusion, 2 weeks of normobaric hypoxia suppressed resting hepcidin levels, but did not alter the post-exercise response in either normoxia or hypoxia, compared with the pre-exposure response.

Keywords: Iron metabolism; altitude training; hypoxia; iron deficiency.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Altitude*
  • Exercise / physiology*
  • Female
  • Hemoglobins / analysis*
  • Hepcidins / blood*
  • Humans
  • Hypoxia / blood
  • Male
  • Oxygen Consumption
  • Rest / physiology*
  • Running / physiology
  • Young Adult

Substances

  • Hemoglobins
  • Hepcidins