Niels Jessen

Molecular adaptations in human subcutaneous adipose tissue after ten weeks of endurance exercise training in healthy males

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Endurance exercise training induces adaptations in metabolically active organs, but adaptations in human subcutaneous adipose tissue (scAT) remains incompletely understood. Based on animal studies, we hypothesized that endurance exercise training would increase the expression of proteins involved in lipolysis and glucose uptake in scAT. To test these hypotheses, nineteen young and healthy males were randomized to either endurance exercise training (TR; age 18-24 yr; BMI 19.0-25.4 kg.m-2) or a non-exercising control group (CON; age 21-35 yr; BMI 20.5-28.8 kg.m-2). Abdominal subcutaneous fat biopsies and blood were obtained at rest pre and post intervention. By using Western Blotting and PCR, we determined expression of lipid droplet-associated proteins, various proteins involved in substrate metabolism, and mRNA abundance of cell-surface G-protein-coupled receptors (GPCR's). Adipose tissue insulin sensitivity was determined from fasting plasma insulin and non-esterified fatty acids (adipose tissue insulin resistance index; Adipo-IR).Adipo-IR improved in TR compared to CON (p=0.03). This was accompanied by increased insulin receptor (IR) protein expression in scAT with a 1.54 (SD 0.79) fold change from pre in TR versus 0.85 (SD 0.30) in CON (p=0.007). Additionally, hexokinase II (HK II) and succinate dehydrogenase complex subunit A (SDHA) protein increased in TR compared to CON (p=0.006 and p=0.04, respectively). We did not observe changes in lipid droplet-associated proteins or mRNA abundance of GPCR's. Collectively, ten weeks of endurance exercise training improved adipose tissue insulin sensitivity, which was accompanied by increased IR, HKII and SDHA protein expression in scAT. We suggest that these adaptations contribute to an improved metabolic flexibility.
TidsskriftJournal of applied physiology (Bethesda, Md. : 1985)
Sider (fra-til)569-577
Antal sider9
StatusUdgivet - 1 mar. 2019


  • Endurance exercise, Subcutaneous adipose tissue

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