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Muscle Nerve. 2009 Nov;40(5):838-46. doi: 10.1002/mus.21360.

Changes of gene expression in electrically stimulated and contralateral rat soleus muscles.

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National Institute of Obesity and Diabetes/Department of Physiology and Biophysics, Institute of Biomedical Sciences, University of São Paulo, São Paulo, Avenida Prof. Lineu Prestes 1524, 05508-900, Butantã, São Paulo, SP, Brazil.


In this study we investigate the effect of a single session of high-intensity contractions on expression of pleiotropic genes and, in particular, those genes associated with metabolism in soleus muscle from electrically stimulated (ES) and contralateral (CL) limbs. The right limbs of male Wistar rats were submitted to contractions by 200-ms trains of electrical stimulation at 100-HZ frequency with pulses of 0.1 ms (voltage 24 +/- 3 V) delivered each second for 1 hour. Soleus muscles were isolated 1 hour after contraction, and gene expression was analyzed by a macroarray technique (Atlas Toxicology 1.2 Array; Clontech Laboratories). Electrical stimulation increased expression in 92 genes (16% of the genes present in the membrane). Sixty-six genes were upregulated in both ES and CL soleus muscles, and expression of 26 genes was upregulated in the ES muscle only. The most altered genes were those related to stress response and metabolism. Electrical stimulation also raised expression of transcription factors, translation and posttranslational modification of proteins, ribosomal proteins, and intracellular transducers/effectors/modulators. The results indicate that a single session of electrical stimulation upregulated expression of genes related to metabolism and oxidative stress in soleus muscle from both ES and CL limbs. These findings may indicate an association with tissue hypertrophy and metabolic adaptations induced by physical exercise training not only in the ES but also in the CL non-stimulated muscle, suggesting a cross-education phenomenon.

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