Short-term intense exercise training reduces stress markers and alters the transcriptional response to exercise in skeletal muscle

J. Matthew Hinkley, Adam R. Konopka, Miranda K. Suer, Matthew P. Harber

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The purpose of this investigation was to examine the influence of short-term intense endurance training on cycling performance, along with the acute and chronic signaling responses of skeletal muscle stress and stability markers. Ten recreationally active subjects (25 ± 2 yr, 79 ± 3 kg, 47 ± 2 ml·kg-1·min-1) were studied before and after a 12-day cyclingV˙protocol to examine the effects of short-term intense (70– 100% VO2max) exercise training on resting and exercise-induced regulation of molecular factors related to skeletal muscle cellular stress and protein stability. Skeletal muscle biopsies were taken at rest and 3 h following a 20-km cycle time trial on days 1 and 12 to measure mRNA expression and protein content. Training improved (P < 0.05) cycling performance by 5 ± 1%. Protein oxidation was unaltered on day 12, while resting SAPK/JNK phosphorylation was reduced (P < 0.05), suggesting a reduction in cellular stress. The maintenance in the myocellular environment may be due to synthesis of cytoprotective markers, along with enhanced degradation of damage proteins, as training tended (P < 0.10) to increase resting protein content of manganese superoxide dismutase and heat shock protein 70 (HSP70), while mRNA expression of MuRF-1 was elevated (P < 0.05). Following training (day 12), the acute exercise-induced transcriptional response of TNF-α, NF-kB, MuRF-1, and PGC1α was attenuated (P < 0.05) compared with day 1. Collectively, these data suggest that short-term intense training enhances protein stability, creating a cellular environment capable of resistance to exerciseinduced stress, which may be favorable for adaptation.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)R426-R433
JournalAmerican Journal of Physiology - Regulatory Integrative and Comparative Physiology
Issue number3
StatePublished - Mar 10 2017


  • MuRF-1
  • Myostatin
  • Proliferator-activated receptor gamma coactivator 1-α
  • Protein oxidation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physiology
  • Physiology (medical)


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