Plasma catecholamines and heart rate at the beginning of muscular exercise in man

Claudio Orizio, Renza Perini, Alessandro Comandè, Maurizio Castellano, Marina Beschi, Arsenio Veicsteinas

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The relationship between the time course of heart rate and venous blood norepinephrine (NE) and epinephrine (E) concentrations was studied in 7 sedentary young men before and during 3 bicycle exercises of 5 min each (respectively 23±2.8%, 45±2.6% and 65±2.4% {Mathematical expression}, mean ±SE). During the low level exercise the change in heart rate is monoexponential (τ =5.7±1.2s) and no increment above the resting level of NE (ΔNE) or of E (ΔE) occurs. At the medium and highest intensity of exercise: a) the change in heart rate is biexponential, τ for the fast and the slow component averaging about 3 and 80 s respectively; b) ΔNE (but not ΔE) increases continuously with time of exercise; c) at the 5th min of exercise heart rate increments are related to ΔNE; d) between 20s and 5 min, at corresponding sampling times, the heart rate of the slow component is linearly related to ΔNE. At exercise levels higher than 33% {Mathematical expression} the increase in heart rate described by the slow component of the biexponential kinetic could be due to an augmented sympathetic activity revealed by increased NE blood levels.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)644-651
Number of pages8
JournalEuropean Journal of Applied Physiology and Occupational Physiology
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - May 1988


  • Catecholamines
  • Epinephrine
  • Exertion
  • Heart rate
  • Norepinephrine

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
  • Physiology


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