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Aerobic exercise training reduces cardiac function in adult male offspring exposed to prenatal hypoxia

Laura M. Reyes, Raven Kirschenman, Anita Quon, Jude S. Morton, Amin Shah, Sandra T. Davidge
American Journal of Physiology - Regulatory, Integrative and Comparative Physiology2015
Aerobic exercise training reduces cardiac function in adult male offspring exposed to prenatal hypoxia. Am J Physiol Regul Integr Comp Physiol 309: R489 –R498, 2015. First published July 8, 2015; doi:10.1152/ajpregu.00201.2015.—Intrauterine growth restriction (IUGR) has been associated with increased susceptibility to myocardial ischemia-reperfusion (I/R) injury. Exercise is an effective preventive intervention for cardiovascular diseases; however, it may be detrimental in conditions of compromised health. The aim of this study was to determine whether exercise training can improve cardiac performance after I/R injury in IUGR offspring. We used a hypoxiainduced IUGR model by exposing pregnant Sprague-Dawley rats to 21% oxygen (control) or hypoxic (11% oxygen; IUGR) conditions from gestational day 15 to 21. At 10 wk of age, offspring were randomized to a sedentary group or to a 6-wk exercise protocol. Transthoracic echocardiography assessments were performed after 6 wk. Twenty-four hours after the last bout of exercise, ex vivo cardiac function was determined using a working heart preparation. With exercise training, there was improved baseline cardiac performance in male control offspring but a reduced baseline cardiac performance in male IUGR exercised offspring (P 0.05). In male offspring, exercise decreased superoxide generation in control offspring, while in IUGR offspring, it had the polar opposite effect (interaction P 0.05). There was no effect of IUGR or exercise on cardiac function in female offspring. In conclusion, in male IUGR offspring, exercise may be a secondary stressor on cardiac function. A reduction in cardiac performance along with an increase in superoxide production in response to exercise was observed in this susceptible group.

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