Capacity for red blood cell aggregation is higher in athletic mammalian species than in sedentary species

A. S. Popel, P. C. Johnson, M. V. Kameneva, M. A. Wild

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

The purpose of this study was to show that two rheological parameters red blood cell (RBC) sedimentation rate and apparent blood viscosity at low shear rate, characterizing the degree of RBC aggregation, correlate significantly with the maximal mass-specific rate of oxygen consumption or aerobic capacity (V̇O(2max)). Comparisons were made within two groups of similarly sized athletic and sedentary species: group 1, pronghorn antelope, dog, goat, and sheep; and group 2, horse and cow. The pronghorn antelope (Antilocapra americana) is one of the most athletic mammals, and we have obtained data on the rheological properties of blood from this species for the first time. The values of apparent viscosity at hematocrit = 40% and shear rate = 0.277 s- 1 measured in a rotational viscometer were 59.5, 42.6, and 9.1 cP for antelope, dog, and sheep blood, respectively, and 55.3 and 11.5 cP for horse and cow blood, respectively. The viscosity values for antelope, dog, and sheep blood can be correlated with aerobic capacity: In viscosity = 4.48 - 106.3 V̇O(2 max)/-1 (r2 = 0.998; P < 0.05). The values of RBC sedimentation rate at hematocrit = 40% were 12.8, 7.0, and 0 mm/h for antelope, dog, and sheep blood, respectively, and 45.3 and 0.1 mm/h for horse and cow blood, respectively. Therefore, the data showed that the athletic species exhibit a consistently higher degree of RBC aggregation than do the corresponding nonathletic species.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1790-1794
Number of pages5
JournalJournal of applied physiology
Volume77
Issue number4
DOIs
StatePublished - 1994

Keywords

  • cow
  • dog
  • erythrocyte sedimentation rate
  • hemorheology
  • horse
  • maximum oxygen consumption
  • pronghorn antelope
  • sheep

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physiology
  • Physiology (medical)

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