The effect of endothelin A and B receptor blockade on cutaneous vascular and sweating responses in young men during and following exercise in the heat

J Appl Physiol (1985). 2016 Dec 1;121(6):1263-1271. doi: 10.1152/japplphysiol.00679.2016. Epub 2016 Oct 7.


During exercise, cutaneous vasodilation and sweating responses occur, whereas these responses rapidly decrease during postexercise recovery. We hypothesized that the activation of endothelin A (ETA) receptors, but not endothelin B (ETB) receptors, attenuate cutaneous vasodilation during high-intensity exercise and contribute to the subsequent postexercise suppression of cutaneous vasodilation. We also hypothesized that both receptors increase sweating during and following high-intensity exercise. Eleven men (24 ± 4 yr) performed an intermittent cycling protocol consisting of two 30-min bouts of moderate- (40% V̇o2peak) and high-intensity (75% V̇o2peak) exercise in the heat (35°C), each separated by a 20- and 40-min recovery period, respectively. Cutaneous vascular conductance (CVC) and sweat rate were evaluated at four intradermal microdialysis skin sites: 1) lactated Ringer (control), 2) 500 nM BQ123 (a selective ETA receptor blocker), 3) 300 nM BQ788 (a selective ETB receptor blocker), or 4) a combination of BQ123 + BQ788. There were no between-site differences in CVC during each exercise bout (all P > 0.05); however, CVC following high-intensity exercise was greater at BQ123 (56 ± 9%max) and BQ123 + BQ788 (55 ± 14%max) sites relative to the control site (43 ± 12%max) (all P ≤ 0.05). Sweat rate did not differ between sites throughout the protocol (all P > 0.05). We show that neither ETA nor ETB receptors modulate cutaneous vasodilation and sweating responses during and following moderate- and high-intensity exercise in the heat, with the exception that ETA receptors may partly contribute to the suppression of cutaneous vasodilation following high-intensity exercise.

Keywords: ET-1; endothelial cell; endothelium-derived contracting factors; microcirculation.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Endothelin A Receptor Antagonists / pharmacology*
  • Endothelin B Receptor Antagonists / pharmacology*
  • Exercise / physiology*
  • Hot Temperature
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Receptor, Endothelin A / metabolism
  • Receptor, Endothelin B / metabolism
  • Skin / blood supply*
  • Skin / drug effects*
  • Skin / metabolism
  • Skin / physiopathology
  • Sweating / drug effects*
  • Sweating / physiology*
  • Vasodilation / drug effects
  • Vasodilation / physiology
  • Young Adult


  • Endothelin A Receptor Antagonists
  • Endothelin B Receptor Antagonists
  • Receptor, Endothelin A
  • Receptor, Endothelin B