The effect of moderate-intensity acute aerobic exercise duration on the percentage of circulating CD31+ cells in lymphocyte population

Mariani Santosa, Ermita I.I. Ilyas, Radiana D. Antarianto



Background: The increasing number of circulating CD31+ endothelial progenitor cells is one of the important factors for maintaining vascular homeostasis. Exercise will effectively increase the number of circulating CD31+ endothelial progenitor cells. This study aims to determine the effect of moderate-intensity acute aerobic exercise duration on the percentage of circulating CD31+ cells in untrained healthy young adult subjects.

Methods: This study was an experimental study. Untrained healthy volunteers (n=20) performed ergocycle at moderate-intensity (64–74% maximum heart rate) for 10 minutes or 30 minutes. Immediately before and 10 minutes after exercise, venous blood samples were drawn. The percentage of CD31+ cells in peripheral blood was analyzed using flow cytometry. Data was statistically analyzed using student t-test.

Results: There were no significant differences in the mean percentage of circulating CD31+ cells before and after exercise for 10 minutes and 30 minutes (p>0.05). However, there was a different trend in the percentage of circulating CD31+ cells after exercise for 10 minutes and 30 minutes. In the 10 minutes duration, 50% of subjects showed increase. Whereas in the 30 minutes duration, 80% of subjects showed increase.

Conclusion: The percentage of circulating CD31+ cells before and after exercise for 10 minutes was not different compared to 30 minutes. However, data analysis shows that majority of subjects (80%) had increased in the percentage of circulating CD31+ cells after 30 minutes exercise.


CD31+ peripheral blood mononuclear cells; circulating endothelial progenitor cells; endothelial regeneration; exercise

Full Text:



  1. Institute of Medicine (US) Committee on Preventing the Global Epidemic of Cardiovascular Disease. Promoting cardiovascular health in the developing world: a critical challenge to achive global health. Fuster V, Kelly BB, editors. Washington (DC): National Academies Press (US); 2010. p. 49.
  2. World Health Organization. Preventing chronic disease: a vital investment. Geneva: World Health Organization; 2005. p. 15.
  3. Rajendran P, Rengarajan T, Thangavel J, Nishigaki Y, Sakthisekaran D, Sethi G, et al. The vascular endothelium and human diseases. Int J Biol Sci. 2013;9(10):1057–69.
  4. Deanfield JE, Halcox JP, Rabelink TJ. Endothelial function and dysfunction: testing and clinical relevance. Circulation. 2007;115(10):1285–95.
  5. De Biase C, De Rosa R, Luciano R, De Luca S, Capuano E, Trimarco B, et al. Effects of physical activity on endothelial progenitor cells (EPCs). Front Physiol. 2013;4:414.
  6. Timmermans F, Plum J, Yöder MC, Ingram DA, Vandekerckhove B, Case J. Endothelial progenitor cells: identity defined?. J Cell Mol Med. 2009;13(1):87–102.
  7. Kim H, Cho HJ, Kim SW, Liu B, Choi YJ, Lee J, et al. CD31+ cells represent highly angiogenic and vasculogenic cells in bone marrow: novel role of nonendothelial CD31+ cells in neovascularization and their therapeutic effects on ischemic vascular disease. Circ Res. 2010;10(5):602–14.
  8. Koutroumpi M, Dimopoulos S, Psarra K, Kyprianou T, Nanas S. Circulating endothelial and progenitor cells: evidence from acute and long term exercise effects. World J Cardiol. 2012;4(12):312–26.
  9. Siddique A, Shantsila E, Lip GYH, Varma C. Endothelial progenitor cells: what use for the cardiologist?. J Angiogenes Res. 2010;2(6):1–13.
  10. American College of Sports Medicine. ACSM's guidelines for exercise testing and prescription. 8th ed. Philadelphia: Lippincott Wiliams & Wilkins; 2010. p. 7–76.
  11. Silva JF, Rocha NG, Nóbrega AC. Mobilization of endothelial progenitor cells with exercise in healthy individuals: a systematic review. Arq Bras Cardiol. 2012;98(2):182–91.
  12. Sharkey BJ. Physiology of fitness. 3rd ed. USA: Human Kinetics Publishers; 1990. p. 19.
  13. Hristov M, Erl W, Weber PC. Endothelial progenitor cells: mobilization, differentiation, and homing. Arterioscler Thromb Vasc Biol. 2003;23(7):1185–9.
  14. Laufs U, Urhausen A, Werner N, Scharhag J, Heitz A, Kissner G, et al. Running exercise of different duration and intensity: effect on endothelial progenitor cells in healthy subjects. Eur J Cardiovasc Prev Rehabil. 2005;12(4):407–14.
  15. Cubbon RM, Murgatroyd SR, Ferguson C, Bowen TS, Rakobowchuk M, Baliga V, et al. Human exercise-induced circulating progenitor cell mobilization is nitric oxide-dependent and is blunted in South Asian men. Arterioscler Thromb Vasc Biol. 2010;30(4):878–84.
  16. Swain DP, Abernathy KS, Smith CS, Lee SJ, Bunn SA. Target heart rates for the development of cardiorespiratory fitness. Med Sci Sports Exerc. 1994;26:112–6.
  17. Kojda G, Hambrecht R. Molecular mechanisms of vascular adaptations to exercise. Physical activity as an effective antioxidant therapy?. Cardiovasc Res. 2005;67(2):187–97.
  18. Bonsignore MR, Morici G, Riccioni R, Huertas A, Petrucci E, Veca M, et al. Hemopoietic and angiogenic progenitors in healthy athletes: different responses to endurance and maximal exercise. J Appl Physiol (1985). 2010;109(1):60–7.

Copyright (c) 2016 Mariani Santosa, Ermita I.I. Ilyas, Radiana D. Antarianto

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License.

All articles and issues in Medical Journal of Indonesia have unique DOI number registered in Crossref.