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Braz J Med Biol Res. 2003 Dec;36(12):1751-9. Epub 2003 Nov 17.

Duration-controlled swimming exercise training induces cardiac hypertrophy in mice.

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Instituto do Coração, Faculdade de Medicina, Universidade de São Paulo, São Paulo, SP, Brasil.


Exercise training associated with robust conditioning can be useful for the study of molecular mechanisms underlying exercise-induced cardiac hypertrophy. A swimming apparatus is described to control training regimens in terms of duration, load, and frequency of exercise. Mice were submitted to 60- vs 90-min session/day, once vs twice a day, with 2 or 4% of the weight of the mouse or no workload attached to the tail, for 4 vs 6 weeks of exercise training. Blood pressure was unchanged in all groups while resting heart rate decreased in the trained groups (8-18%). Skeletal muscle citrate synthase activity, measured spectrophotometrically, increased (45-58%) only as a result of duration and frequency-controlled exercise training, indicating that endurance conditioning was obtained. In groups which received duration and endurance conditioning, cardiac weight (14-25%) and myocyte dimension (13-20%) increased. The best conditioning protocol to promote physiological hypertrophy, our primary goal in the present study, was 90 min, twice a day, 5 days a week for 4 weeks with no overload attached to the body. Thus, duration- and frequency-controlled exercise training in mice induces a significant conditioning response qualitatively similar to that observed in humans.

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