Mild exercise training, cardioprotection and stress genes profile

Marina Marini, Rosa Lapalombella, Vittoria Margonato, Raffaella Ronchi, Michele Samaja, Cristina Scapin, Luisa Gorza, Tullia Maraldi, Paolo Carinci, Carlo Ventura, Arsenio Veicsteinas

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


To improve current knowledge of the molecular mechanisms underlying exercise-induced cardioprotection in a rat model of mild exercise training, Sprague - Dawley rats were trained to run on a treadmill up to 55% of their maximal oxygen uptake for 1 h/day, 3 days/week, 14 weeks, with age-matched sedentary controls (n = 20/group). Rats were sacrificed 48 h after the last training session. Despite lack of cardiac hypertrophy, training decreased blood hemoglobin (7.94 ± 0.21 mM vs. 8.78 ± 0.23 mM, mean ± SE, P ± 0.01) and increased both plasma malondialdehyde (0.139 ± 0.005 mM vs. 0.085 ± 0.009 mM, P = 0.05) and the activity of Mn-superoxide dismutase (11.6 ± 0.6 vs. 16.5 ± 1.6 mU/μg, P = 0.01), whereas total superoxide dismutase activity was unaffected. When subjected to 30-min ischemia followed by 90-min reperfusion, hearts from trained rats (n = 5) displayed reduced infarct size as compared to controls (37.26 ± 0.92% vs. 49.09 ± 2.11% of risk area, P = 0.04). The biochemical analyses in the myocardium, which included gene expression profiles, real-time PCR, Western blot and determination of enzymatic activity, showed training-induced upregulation of the following mRNAs and/or proteins: growth-arrest and DNA-damage induced 153 (GADD153/ CHOP), heme-oxygenase-1 (HO-1), cyclooxygenase-2 (Cox-2), heat-shock protein 70/72 (HSP70/72), whereas heat-shock protein 60 (HSP60) and glucose-regulated protein 75 (GRP75) were decreased. As a whole, these data indicate that mild exercise training activates a second window of myocardial protection against ischemia/reperfusion by upregulating a number of protective genes, thereby warranting further investigation in man.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)503-510
Number of pages8
JournalEuropean Journal of Applied Physiology
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2007



  • Gene expression
  • Hsp70/72
  • Ischemia-reperfusion
  • Oxidative stress
  • Rat heart

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
  • Physiology
  • Orthopedics and Sports Medicine
  • Physical Therapy, Sports Therapy and Rehabilitation

Cite this

Marini, M., Lapalombella, R., Margonato, V., Ronchi, R., Samaja, M., Scapin, C., Gorza, L., Maraldi, T., Carinci, P., Ventura, C., & Veicsteinas, A. (2007). Mild exercise training, cardioprotection and stress genes profile. European Journal of Applied Physiology, 99(5), 503-510.