, 37:61 | Cite as

Effects of combined physical exercise training on DNA damage and repair capacity: role of oxidative stress changes

  • Jorge Pinto SoaresEmail author
  • Amélia M. Silva
  • Maria Manuel Oliveira
  • Francisco Peixoto
  • Isabel Gaivão
  • Maria Paula Mota


Regular physical exercise has been shown to be one of the most important lifestyle influences on improving functional performance, decreasing morbidity and all causes of mortality among older people. However, it is known that acute physical exercise may induce an increase in oxidative stress and oxidative damage in several structures, including DNA. Considering this, the purpose of this study was to identify the effects of 16 weeks of combined physical exercise in DNA damage and repair capacity in lymphocytes. In addition, we aimed to investigate the role of oxidative stress involved in those changes. Fifty-seven healthy men (40 to 74 years) were enrolled in this study. The sample was divided into two groups: the experimental group (EG), composed of 31 individuals, submitted to 16 weeks of combined physical exercise training; and the control group (CG), composed of 26 individuals, who did not undergo any specifically orientated physical activity. We observed an improvement of overall physical performance in the EG, after the physical exercise training. A significant decrease in DNA strand breaks and FPG-sensitive sites was found after the physical exercise training, with no significant changes in 8-oxoguanine DNA glycosylase enzyme activity. An increase was observed in antioxidant activity, and a decrease was found in lipid peroxidation levels after physical exercise training. These results suggest that physical exercise training induces protective effects against DNA damage in lymphocytes possibly related to the increase in antioxidant capacity.


Physical exercise training DNA damage FPG-sensitive sites DNA repair Antioxidant capacity MDA 



This work was supported by the Foundation of Science and Technology (FCT) for the research grant SFRH/BD/66438/2009 to JS and for the project entitled Physical exercise role on humans’ lymphocytes DNA damage reduction: possible influence of oxidative stress and DNA repair capacity PTDC/DES/121575/2010. We also would like to acknowledge FCT and FEDER/COMPETE under the references PEst-C/AGR/UI4033/2014.


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Copyright information

© American Aging Association 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  • Jorge Pinto Soares
    • 1
    Email author
  • Amélia M. Silva
    • 2
  • Maria Manuel Oliveira
    • 3
  • Francisco Peixoto
    • 2
  • Isabel Gaivão
    • 4
  • Maria Paula Mota
    • 1
  1. 1.Research Center in Sports Sciences, Health and Human Development (CIDESD)University of Trás-os-Montes e Alto Douro (UTAD)Vila RealPortugal
  2. 2.Center for Research and Technology of Agro-Environmental and Biological Sciences (CITAB)UTADVila RealPortugal
  3. 3.Chemistry Center of Vila Real (CQVR)UTADVila RealPortugal
  4. 4.Animal and Veterinary Research Center (CECAV)UTADVila RealPortugal

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