Effects of exercise and muscle type on BDNF, NT-4/5, and TrKB expression in skeletal muscle

Muscle Nerve. 2010 Mar;41(3):385-91. doi: 10.1002/mus.21503.


Muscle-derived neurotrophins are thought to contribute to the adaptation of skeletal muscle to exercise, but the effects of brief exercise interventions on BDNF, NT-4/5, and trkB are not understood. RNA was extracted for RT-PCR from soleus and medial gastrocnemius of Sprague-Dawley rats exercised on a treadmill at speeds up to 20 m/min at 5% incline for 5 or 10 days. BDNF expression was elevated in soleus following 5 days (184%, P < 0.001) but not 10 days of exercise. NT-4/5 and trkB were not affected at either time-point. BDNF mRNA was significantly higher in soleus at rest when compared with medial gastrocnemius (193%, P < 0.05). No significant effects of muscle type were detected for NT-4/5 and trkB. Our results indicate differential control of BDNF expression between soleus and medial gastrocnemius following 5 days of exercise. BDNF may be a protein with an uncharacterized contribution to the acute adaptation of skeletal muscle to exercise, whereas NT-4/5 shows no response.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Analysis of Variance
  • Animals
  • Brain-Derived Neurotrophic Factor / genetics
  • Brain-Derived Neurotrophic Factor / metabolism*
  • Female
  • Muscle, Skeletal / metabolism*
  • Nerve Growth Factors / genetics
  • Nerve Growth Factors / metabolism*
  • Physical Conditioning, Animal / physiology*
  • RNA, Messenger / genetics
  • RNA, Messenger / metabolism
  • Rats
  • Rats, Sprague-Dawley
  • Receptor, trkB / genetics
  • Receptor, trkB / metabolism*
  • Reverse Transcriptase Polymerase Chain Reaction
  • Time Factors


  • Brain-Derived Neurotrophic Factor
  • Nerve Growth Factors
  • RNA, Messenger
  • Receptor, trkB
  • neurotrophin 4