Exercise training decreases DNA damage and increases DNA repair and resistance against oxidative stress of proteins in aged rat skeletal muscle

Pflugers Arch. 2002 Nov;445(2):273-8. doi: 10.1007/s00424-002-0918-6. Epub 2002 Sep 13.


Regular physical exercise retards a number of age-associated disorders, in spite of the paradox that free radical generation is significantly enhanced with exercise. Eight weeks of treadmill running resulted in nearly a 40% increase in maximal oxygen uptake in both middle-aged (20-month-old) and aged (30-month-old) rats. The age-associated increase in 8-hydroxy-2'-deoxyguanosine (8-OHdG) content was significantly attenuated in gastrocnemius muscle by exercise. The 8-OHdG repair, as measured by the excision of 32P-labeled damaged oligonucleotide, increased in muscle of exercising animals. The reactive carbonyl derivatives (RCD) of proteins did not increase with aging. However, when the muscle homogenate was exposed to a mixture of 1 mM iron sulfate and 50 mM ascorbic acid, the muscle of old control animals accumulated more RCD than that of the trained or adult groups. The chymotrypsin-like activity of proteasome complex increased in muscle of old trained rats. We suggest that regular exercise-induced adaptation attenuates the age-associated increase in 8-OHdG levels, and increases the activity of DNA repair and resistance against oxidative stress in proteins.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • 8-Hydroxy-2'-Deoxyguanosine
  • Aging / physiology*
  • Animals
  • Body Weight
  • DNA Damage*
  • DNA Repair*
  • Deoxyguanosine / analogs & derivatives*
  • Deoxyguanosine / metabolism
  • Male
  • Muscle Proteins / genetics
  • Muscle Proteins / physiology*
  • Muscle, Skeletal / physiology*
  • Oxidative Stress / physiology*
  • Oxygen Consumption
  • Physical Conditioning, Animal* / physiology*
  • Rats
  • Rats, Inbred F344


  • Muscle Proteins
  • 8-Hydroxy-2'-Deoxyguanosine
  • Deoxyguanosine