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J Card Fail. 2007 Mar;13(2):79-85.

Circuit resistance training in chronic heart failure improves skeletal muscle mitochondrial ATP production rate--a randomized controlled trial.

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  • 1Centre for Ageing, Rehabilitation, Exercise and Sport, Victoria University of Technology, Melbourne, Australia.



We aimed to determine the role of skeletal muscle mitochondrial ATP production rate (MAPR) in relation to exercise tolerance after resistance training (RT) in chronic heart failure (CHF).


Thirteen CHF patients (New York Heart Association functional class 2.3 +/- 0.5; Left ventricular ejection fraction 26 +/- 8%; age 70 +/- 8 years) underwent testing for peak total body oxygen consumption (VO(2peak)), and resting vastus lateralis muscle biopsy. Patients were then randomly allocated to 11 weeks of RT (n = 7), or continuance of usual care (C; n = 6), after which testing was repeated. Muscle samples were analyzed for MAPR, metabolic enzyme activity, and capillary density. VO(2peak) and MAPR in the presence of the pyruvate and malate (P+M) substrate combination, representing carbohydrate metabolism, increased in RT (P < .05) and decreased in C (P < .05), with a significant difference between groups (VO(2peak), P = .005; MAPR, P = .03). There was a strong correlation between the change in MAPR and the change in peak total body oxygen consumption (VO(2peak)) over the study (r = 0.875; P < .0001), the change in MAPR accounting for 70% of the change in VO(2peak).


These findings suggest that mitochondrial ATP production is a major determinant of aerobic capacity in CHF patients and can be favorably altered by muscle strengthening exercise.

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