Pflügers Archiv

, Volume 385, Issue 2, pp 147–153 | Cite as

Effects of a mild weight-lifting program on the progress of glucocorticoid-induced atrophy in rat hindlimb muscles

  • Phillip F. Gardiner
  • Bonnie Hibl
  • D. R. Simpson
  • Roland Roy
  • V. Reggie Edgerton
Heart, Circulation, Respiration and Blood; Environmental and Exercise Physiology


The effect of a mild weight-lifting program on the progress of glucocorticoid-induced atrophy was investigated. Groups of rats were either injected daily for 6 weeks with triamcinolone acetonide, 1 mg/kg (group S), subjected to a weight-lifting program 4 times per week (group T), or subjected to the injection and weight-lifting programs concurrently (group ST). The traningng program, besides decreasing the normal body weight gain of control (group C) rats, had no effects on gastrocnemius and soleus muscles. In group ST, the extent of gastrocnemius atrophy was less severe than in group S, and the mean areas of all fiber types were greater in similar proportion. Gastrocnemius muscles were also tetanically stronger (g, g/g body weight) in group ST than group S. The soleus muscles of groups ST and S were similar in all indices of size and strength, except for a significantly decreased fast-twitsch-oxidative-glycolytic (FOG) mean fiber area in the ST seleus muscles. The extent of fast-twitsch muscle atrophy resulting from chronic glucocorticoid treatment can be lessened by mild weight-lifting exercise. Differences in fiber area responses between soleus and gastrocnemius may reflect recruitment and/or metabolic differences of similar fiber types in the two muscles.

Key words

Atrophy Glucocorticoids Muscle overload Hypertrophy Exercise training 


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 1980

Authors and Affiliations

  • Phillip F. Gardiner
    • 2
  • Bonnie Hibl
    • 1
  • D. R. Simpson
    • 1
  • Roland Roy
    • 1
  • V. Reggie Edgerton
    • 1
  1. 1.Neuromuscular Research Laboratory and Department of KinesiologyUniversity of CaliforniaLos AngelesUSA
  2. 2.Département d'éducation physiqueUniversité de MontréalMontréalCanada

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