- Goulet, G C; Halonen, N R; Koch, L G; Britton, S L; Zernicke, R F; Kozloff, K M
- The role of exercise in promoting bone health is typically attributed to increased mechanical loading, which induces functional adaptation. Recent evidence suggests that habitual aerobic exercise has influence at the cellular level as well. The effect of aerobic capacity on osteoblast-lineage cell differentiation and function as well as skeletal phenotype is unknown. Using a rat model of high-capacity and low-capacity runners (HCRs and LCRs, respectively), in which an intrinsic functional genomic difference in aerobic capacity exists between nontrained animals, this study evaluated the effects of aerobic capacity on measures of bone mass and strength as well as osteoblast activity following ovariectomy. The ovariectomized rat emulates the clinical features of the estrogen-depleted human skeleton and represents a valuable model for studying short-term upregulation of osteoblast activity. We hypothesized that intrinsically high aerobic capacity would augment osteoblast response, which would mitigate the deleterious effects of hormone withdrawal. Femora and tibiae were assessed by micro-computed tomography, mechanical testing, and dynamic histomorphometry. HCRs had enhanced femoral tissue mineral density and estimated elastic modulus relative to LCRs. At 4 weeks postovariectomy, HCRs demonstrated a more robust osteoblast response. Markers of bone formation were upregulated to a greater extent in HCRs than LCRs, suggesting a role for aerobic capacity in governing osteoblast activity. Results from this and future studies will help to identify the influence of cellular aerobic metabolism on bone health, which may lead to new strategies for targeting diseases of the skeleton.
- Calcified tissue international Journal
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