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Med Sci Sports Exerc. 2001 Sep;33(9):1415-22.

Effect of propionyl-L-carnitine on exercise performance in peripheral arterial disease.

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School of Human Movement Studies, Queensland University of Technology, Brisbane, Australia.



Supplementation with propionyl-L-carnitine (PLC) may be of use in improving the exercise capacity of people with peripheral arterial disease.


After a 2-wk exercise familiarization phase, seven subjects displaying intermittent claudication were studied over a 12-wk period consisting of three 4-wk phases, baseline (B), supplementation (S), and placebo (P). PLC was supplemented at 2 g x d(-1), and subjects were blinded to the order of supplementation. Unilateral calf strength and endurance were assessed weekly. Walking performance was assessed at the end of each phase using an incremental protocol, during which respiratory gases were collected.


Although there was not a significant increase in maximal walking time ( approximately 14%) in the whole group, walking time improved to a greater extent than the individual baseline coefficient of variation in four of the seven subjects. The changes in walking performance were correlated with changes in the respiratory exchange ratio both at steady state (r = 0.59) and maximal exercise (r = 0.79). Muscle strength increased significantly from 695 +/- 198 N to 812 +/- 249 N by the end of S. Changes in calf strength from B to S were modestly related to changes in walking performance (r = 0.56). No improvements in calf endurance were detected throughout the study.


These preliminary data suggest that, in addition to walking performance, muscle strength can be increased in PAD patients after 4 wk of supplementation with propionyl-L-carnitine.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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