An Update on Antioxidants in Muscle Adaptation to Exercise Training

An Update on Antioxidants in Muscle Adaptation to Exercise Training

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An Update on Antioxidants in Muscle Adaptation to Exercise Training

Author: Gomez-Cabrera, M.
University of Valencia

Physical exercise increases the cellular production of reactive oxygen species (ROS) in muscle, liver, and other organs. Originally,
ROS were considered as detrimental and thus as a likely cause of cell damage associated with exhaustion. In the last decade,
evidence showing that ROS act as signals has been gathered and thus the idea that antioxidant supplementation in exercise is
always recommendable has proved incorrect (1). In fact, we proposed that exercise itself can be considered as an antioxidant
because training increases the expression of classical antioxidant enzymes such as superoxide dismutase and glutathione peroxidase and, in general, lowering the endogenous antioxidant enzymes by administration of antioxidant supplements may not be a good strategy when training (2).

Antioxidant enzymes are not the only ones to be activated by training. Mitochondriogenesis is an important process activated in
exercise (3). Many redox-sensitive enzymes are involved in this process. Important signaling molecules like MAP Kinases, NF-B,
PGC-1α, p53, Heat Shock Factor, and others modulate muscle adaptation to exercise. Interventions aimed at modifying the
production of ROS in exercise must be performed with care as they may be detrimental in that they may lower useful adaptations to
exercise (4).

1. M. C. Gomez-Cabrera et al., J Physiol, (Jun 2, 2005).
2. M. C. Gomez-Cabrera, E. Domenech, J. Vina, Free Radic Biol Med 44, 126 (Jan 15, 2008).
3. M. C. Gomez-Cabrera et al., Am J Clin Nutr 87, 142 (Jan, 2008).
4. M. C. Gomez-Cabrera, A. Salvador-Pascual, H. Cabo, B. Ferrando, J. Vina, Free Radic Biol Med 86, 37 (Sep, 2015).

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