Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy


School of Medicine


In any object, including humans, the rate of heat exchange is surface area-dependent, whilst one's body mass and composition will determine heat-storage capacity. Therefore, among individuals with similar composition, heat exchange and storage are tightly linked to morphological variations in the ratio between body surface area and mass (specific surface area). That ratio is known to be a key determinant of body temperature change during exercise in the heat, and may assist in explaining inter-individual and gender-related differences in vasomotor and sudomotor function, and perhaps the extent of thermoeffector adaptation. However, systematic research on the possible association between morphological configuration and thermoeffector function is surprisingly sparse, and often incomplete. Accordingly, three experimental studies were conducted, following a series of preliminary investigations (Chapter 2), to evaluate whether or not thermoeffector activity displays a morphological dependency in both men (Chapters 3) and women (Chapter 4), and also following heat acclimation (Chapter 5).