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Exerc Immunol Rev. 2010;16:77-85.

Leukaemia inhibitory factor--an exercise-induced myokine.

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The Centre of Inflammation and Metabolism, the Department of Infectious Diseases and CMRC, Rigshospitalet, Faculty of Health Sciences, University of Copenhagen, Denmark.


During and following exercise skeletal muscle synthesises and releases a number of myokines that exert their effects either systemically or locally within the muscle. Several of these myokines influence metabolism, regeneration and/or hypertrophy and are therefore considered to be important contributing factors in muscle homeostasis and muscle adaptation to exercise training. Leukaemia inhibitory factor (LIF) is produced and released from muscle cells in vitro and from intact skeletal muscle in vivo. During exercise, skeletal muscle potently up-regulates LIF mRNA expression, likely due to oscillations in intracellular Ca2+ concentrations. However, circulating levels of LIF are not increased with exercise suggesting that LIF exerts its effect locally. LIF stimulates muscle satellite cell proliferation and is involved in muscle hypertrophy and regeneration. Thus, LIF may be produced by skeletal muscle during exercise to contribute to local aspects of muscle adaptation to exercise.

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