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PPARα gene variants as predicted performance-enhancing polymorphisms in professional Italian soccer players

Authors Proia P, Bianco A, Schiera G, Saladino P, Contrò V, Carmazza G, Traina M, Grimaldi K, Palma A, Paoli A

Received 24 May 2014

Accepted for publication 27 July 2014

Published 8 December 2014 Volume 2014:5 Pages 273—278

DOI https://doi.org/10.2147/OAJSM.S68333

Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single-blind

Peer reviewer comments 3

Editor who approved publication: Professor Fu


Patrizia Proia,1 Antonino Bianco,1 Gabriella Schiera,2 Patrizia Saladino,2 Valentina Contrò,1 Giovanni Caramazza,3 Marcello Traina,1 Keith A Grimaldi,4 Antonio Palma,1 Antonio Paoli5

1Sport and Exercise Sciences Research Unit, 2Department of Biological, Chemical and Pharmaceutical Sciences and Technologies, University of Palermo, Palermo, Italy; 3Regional Sports School of CONI Sicilia, Sicily, Italy; 4Biomedical Engineering Laboratory, Institute of Communication and Computer Systems, National Technical University of Athens, Athens, Greece; 5Department of Biomedical Sciences, University of Padova, Padua, Italy

Background: The PPARα gene encodes the peroxisome proliferator-activator receptor alpha, a central regulator of expression of other genes involved in fatty acid metabolism. The purpose of this study was to determine the prevalence of G allele of the PPARα intron 7 G/C polymorphism (rs4253778) in professional Italian soccer players.
Methods: Sixty professional soccer players and 30 sedentary volunteers were enrolled in the study. Samples of venous blood were obtained at rest, in the morning, by conventional clinical procedures; blood serum was collected and total cholesterol, high-density lipoprotein cholesterol, low-density lipoprotein cholesterol, and triglycerides were measured. An aliquot of anticoagulant-treated blood was used to prepare genomic DNA from whole blood. The G/C polymorphic site in PPARα intron 7 was scanned by using the PCR-RFLP (polymerase chain reaction restriction fragment length polymorphism) protocol with TaqI enzyme.
Results: We found variations in genotype distribution of PPARα polymorphism between professional soccer players and sedentary volunteers. Particularly, G alleles and the GG genotype were significantly more frequent in soccer players compared with healthy controls (64% versus 48%). No significant correlations were found between lipid profile and genotype background.
Conclusion: Previous results demonstrated an association of intron 7 G allele as well as the GG genotype in endurance athletes. Our result suggests that this is the case also in professional soccer players.

Keywords: PCR-RFLP, gene variants, endurance athlete, G allele

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