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Aerobic Exercise and Metabolic Syndrome: The Role of Sympathetic Activity and the Redox System

Authors Monda V, Sessa F, Ruberto M, Carotenuto M, Marsala G, Monda M, Cambria MT, Astuto M, Distefano A, Messina G

Received 10 April 2020

Accepted for publication 17 June 2020

Published 8 July 2020 Volume 2020:13 Pages 2433—2442


Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single-blind

Peer reviewer comments 2

Editor who approved publication: Professor Ming-Hui Zou

Vincenzo Monda,1 Francesco Sessa,2 Maria Ruberto,3 Marco Carotenuto,4 Gabriella Marsala,5 Marcellino Monda,1 Maria Teresa Cambria,6 Marinella Astuto,7 Alfio Distefano,6 Giovanni Messina2

1Department of Experimental Medicine, Università degli Studi della Campania “Luigi Vanvitelli”, Caserta 81100, Italy; 2Department of Clinical and Experimental Medicine, University of Foggia, Foggia 71121, Italy; 3CDR Santa Maria del Pozzo, Naples 80049, Italy; 4Clinic of Child and Adolescent Neuropsychiatry, Department of Mental Health, Physical and Preventive Medicine, Università degli Studi della Campania “Luigi Vanvitelli”, Caserta 81100, Italy; 5Struttura Complessa di Farmacia, Azienda Ospedaliero-Universitaria, Ospedali Riuniti di Foggia, Foggia 71121, Italy; 6Section of Medical Biochemistry, Department of Biomedical and Biotechnological Sciences, University of Catania, Catania 95123, Italy; 7Azienda Ospedaliera “Policlinico Vittorio Emanuele”, U.O. di Anestesia e Terapia Intensiva, Catania 95123, Italy

Correspondence: Francesco Sessa
Department of Clinical and Experimental Medicine, University of Foggia, Foggia 71122, Italy
Tel +39 0881 736926

Background: Aerobic exercise can greatly assist in reducing collateral effects of metabolic syndrome (MetS). Moreover, aerobic exercise is associated with sympathetic activation and adaptive responses to sustain muscle engagement, changes in the release of Orexin A, a pleiotropic neuropeptide.
Aim: The aim of this study was to analyze the beneficial effects of aerobic exercise without dietary changes, in a cohort of MetS subjects, focusing on the role of sympathetic and orexinergic activity. Several blood parameters linked to MetS ROS production, heart rate, galvanic skin response, d-ROM test, and Orexin A serum levels were evaluated in ten males with MetS (BMI 30– 34.9) before and after a period of 6 months of aerobic exercise compared to ten healthy subjects.
Methods: Ten male subjects (aged 54 ± 4.16) with MetS (MetS group) and ten healthy males (aged 49.7 ± 2.79, Healthy group) were told about the study protocol and possible risks, signed the informed consent, and voluntarily participated in the study. Several blood parameters were evaluated in the two tested groups and were re-evaluated in the MetS group after 6 months of training (MetS6M group). The training protocol consisted of more than 30 min/day of walking (average speed of 4.5 km/h) and 3 days/week of aerobic activities (jogging under heart rate control – 120– 140 bpm for 45 min).
Results: The results showed that exercise induced a significant increase in GSR and plasma Orexin A but no significant increase in d-ROM values. Significant decreases in the serum ALT enzyme, triglycerides, and total cholesterol were found, while the HDL levels were significantly higher. Finally, a significant reduction of BMI and resting HR were reported.
Conclusion: The results of this study confirm that physical activity is associated with sympathetic activation, having a pivotal role against adverse effects linked to MetS. Moreover, this study demonstrates that, in patients with MetS, Orexin A is involved in hormonal adaptations to exercise.

Keywords: metabolic syndrome, MetS, Orexin A, body mass index, BMI, heart rate, HR, cholesterol, physical activity

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