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Eur J Appl Physiol. 2010 May;109(2):323-30. doi: 10.1007/s00421-010-1353-6. Epub 2010 Jan 26.

Skeletal muscle telomere length in healthy, experienced, endurance runners.

Author information

  • 1UCT/MRC Research Unit for Exercise Science and Sports Medicine, Department of Human Biology, Faculty of Health Sciences, University of Cape Town, Cape Town, South Africa. Dale.Rae@uct.ac.za

Abstract

Measuring the DNA telomere length of skeletal muscle in experienced endurance runners may contribute to our understanding of the effects of chronic exposure to endurance exercise on skeletal muscle. This study compared the minimum terminal restriction fragment (TRF) length in the vastus lateralis muscle of 18 experienced endurance runners (mean age: 42 +/- 7 years) to those of 19 sedentary individuals (mean age: 39 +/- 10 years). The runners had covered almost 50,000 km in training and racing over 15 years. Minimum TRF lengths measured in the muscle of both groups were similar (P = 0.805) and within the normal range. Minimum TRF length in the runners, however, was inversely related to their years spent running (r = -0.63, P = 0.007) and hours spent training (r = -0.52, P = 0.035). Therefore, since exposure to endurance running may influence minimum TRF length, and by implication, the proliferative potential of the satellite cells, chronic endurance running may be seen as a stressor to skeletal muscle.

PMID:
20101406
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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