Function of human eccrine sweat glands during dynamic exercise and passive heat stress

Narihiko Kondo, Manabu Shibasaki, Ken Aoki, Shunsaku Koga, Yoshimitsu Inoue, Craig G. Crandall

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

67 Scopus citations


The purpose of this study was to identify the pattern of change in the density of activated sweat glands (ASG) and sweat output per gland (SGO) during dynamic constant-workload exercise and passive heat stress. Eight male subjects (22.8 ± 0.9 yr) exercised at a constant workload (117.5 ± 4.8 W) and were also passively heated by lower-leg immersion into hot water of 42°C under an ambient temperature of 25°C and relative humidity of 50%. Esophageal temperature, mean skin temperature, sweating rate (SR), and heart rate were measured continuously during both trials. The number of ASG was determined every 4 min after the onset of sweating, whereas SGO was calculated by dividing SR by ASG. During both exercise and passive heating, SR increased abruptly during the first 8 min after onset of sweating, followed by a slower increase. Similarly for both protocols, the number of ASG increased rapidly during the first 8 min after the onset of sweating and then ceased to increase further (P > 0.05). Conversely, SGO increased linearly throughout both perturbations. Our results suggest that changes in forearm sweating rate rely on both ASG and SGO during the initial period of exercise and passive heating, whereas further increases in SR are dependent on increases in SGO.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1877-1881
Number of pages5
JournalJournal of applied physiology
Issue number5
StatePublished - 2001


  • Density of activated sweat glands
  • Sweat output per gland
  • Thermoregulatory sweating

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physiology
  • Physiology (medical)


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