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J Anim Physiol Anim Nutr (Berl). 2010 Aug 1;94(4):455-64. doi: 10.1111/j.1439-0396.2009.00929.x. Epub 2009 Aug 3.

Changes in intramuscular amino acid levels in submaximally exercised horses - a pilot study.

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Clinical Department for Companion Animals and Horses, Clinic of Internal Medicine and Clinical Epidemiology of Equids, Veterinary University of Vienna, Vienna, Austria.


The time-dependent changes in intramuscular amino acid (AA) levels caused by exercise and by feeding a protein/AA supplement were analysed in nine horses. Horses were submitted to a total of four standardized exercise tests (SETs). Amino acid concentrations were determined prior to, immediately after, 4 and 18 h after exercise. The experiment was subdivided into two consecutive periods of 3 weeks. In each period two SETs were performed. In the second period, horses were given a protein/AA supplement within 1 h after exercise. Significant changes in mean plasma AA levels similar to previous studies were noted to be time-dependent and to be associated with feeding the supplement. The intramuscular concentrations of the free AA in relation to pre-exercise levels showed significant time-dependent changes for alanine, asparagine, aspartate, citrulline, glutamine, glycine, isoleucine, leucine, methionine, serine, taurine, threonine, tyrosine and valine. Feeding the supplement significantly increased the 4 h post-exercise intramuscular concentration of alanine, isoleucine, methionine and tyrosine. At 18 h after exercise, apart from isoleucine and methionine, levels were still increased and also those of asparagine, histidine and valine in relation to none treatment. Hence, it was concluded that AA mixtures administered orally to horses within 1 h after exercise increased intramuscular AA pool.

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