European Journal of Applied Physiology

, Volume 95, Issue 5, pp 550–556

Oxygen radical absorbance capacity (ORAC) and exercise-induced oxidative stress in trotters


  • Susanna Kinnunen
    • Department of PhysiologyUniversity of Kuopio
    • Equine Information Centre
  • Seppo Hyyppä
    • Agricultural Research CentreEquine Research
  • Arja Lehmuskero
    • Equine Information Centre
  • Niku Oksala
    • Department of PhysiologyUniversity of Kuopio
    • Division of Vascular Surgery, Department of SurgeryTampere University Hospital
  • Pekka Mäenpää
    • Equine Information Centre
  • Osmo Hänninen
    • Department of PhysiologyUniversity of Kuopio
    • Department of PhysiologyUniversity of Kuopio
Original Article

DOI: 10.1007/s00421-005-0034-3

Cite this article as:
Kinnunen, S., Hyyppä, S., Lehmuskero, A. et al. Eur J Appl Physiol (2005) 95: 550. doi:10.1007/s00421-005-0034-3


Strenuous exercise is a potent inducer of oxidative stress, which has been suggested to be associated with disturbances in muscle homeostasis, fatigue and injury. There is no comprehensive or uniform view of the antioxidant status in horses. We have previously shown that moderate exercise induces protein oxidation in trotters. The aim of this study was to measure the antioxidative capacity of the horse in relation to different antioxidant components and oxidative stress markers after a single bout of moderate exercise to elucidate the mechanisms of antioxidant protection in horses. Eight clinically normal and regularly trained standard-bred trotters were treadmill-exercised for 53 min at moderate intensity. Blood samples were collected prior to and immediately after exercise and at 4 and 24 h of recovery. Muscle biopsies from the middle gluteal muscle were taken before exercise and after 4 h of recovery. Acute induction of oxygen radical absorbance capacity (ORAC) did not prevent exercise-induced oxidative stress, which was demonstrated by increased lipid hydroperoxides (LPO). Pre-exercise ORAC levels were, however, a determinant of total glutathione content of the blood after 4 and 24 h of recovery. Furthermore, baseline ORAC level correlated negatively with 4-h recovery LPO levels. Our results imply that horses are susceptible to oxidative stress, but a stronger antioxidant capacity may improve coping with exercise-induced oxidative stress.


ExerciseHorseOxidative stressRecoveryTotal antioxidant capacity

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2005