Background: Endurance training increases capillary density of skeletal muscle, but the molecular mechanism of this process is not yet clear. Therefore, the purpose of this study was to investigate the effect of acute sub maximal endurance exercise on serum levels of vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) and matrix metaloproteinases 2 and 9 (MMP-2 and MMP-9) in sedentary men.
Materials and Methods: Twelve healthy men (22.37±2.30 years, BMI=23.16± 2.61 kg/m2) participated in this study. Subjects exercised for 1h at 70% of VO2 max, 3 days after the VO2 max determination. Antecubital vein blood was collected at rest, immediately and 2 h after the exercise. Serum VEGF, MMP-2 and MMP-9 were measured by ELISA methods.
Results: Serum levels of VEGF and MMP-2 decreased immediately after the exercise. Two hours after the exercise, serum levels of VEGF remained at a lower level but serum MMP-2 returned to its basal level. Also, serum levels of MMP-9 did not change significantly in response to exercise.
Conclusion: Acute sub-maximal endurance exercise decreased the main factors involved in development of capillary density in sedentary men. This might to due to the fact that, sub maximal exercise could not provide the two main stimulating factors of angiogenesis, i.e. Shear stress and hypoxia. It could also be explained by the fact that the mechanism of development of capillary network following regular endurance training is different from that following an acute exercise.
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