European Journal of Applied Physiology

, Volume 116, Issue 1, pp 67–76 | Cite as

Avenanthramide supplementation attenuates eccentric exercise-inflicted blood inflammatory markers in women

  • Ryan T. Koenig
  • Jonathan R. Dickman
  • Choung-Hun Kang
  • Tianou Zhang
  • Yi-Fang Chu
  • Li Li JiEmail author
Original Article



Rigorous exercise is known to generate reactive oxygen species (ROS) and inflict inflammatory response. The present study investigated whether dietary supplementation of avenanthramides (AVA) in oats would increase antioxidant protection and reduce inflammation in humans after an acute bout of eccentric exercise.


Young women (age 18–30 years, N = 16) were randomly divided into two groups in a double-blinded fashion, receiving two cookies made of oat flour providing 9.2 mg AVA (AVA) or 0.4 mg AVA (Control, C) each day for 8 weeks. Before and after the dietary regimen each group of subjects ran downhill (DR) on a treadmill at −9 % grade for 1 h at a speed to elicit 75 % of maximal heart rate. Blood samples were collected at rest, immediately and 24 h post-DR.


Before dietary supplementation plasma creatine kinase activity and tumor necrosis factor (TNF)-α concentration were increased immediately after DR (P < 0.05), whereas neutrophil respiratory burst (NRB) was elevated 24 h post-DR (P < 0.05). CK and TNF-α response to DR was abolished during post-supplementation tests in both AVA and C groups, whereas NRB was blunted only in AVA but not in C. Plasma interleukin-6 level and mononuclear cell nuclear factor (NF) κB activity were not affected by DR either before or after dietary supplementation, but were lowered 24 h post-DR in AVA versus C (P < 0.05). Both groups increased plasma total antioxidant activity following 8-week dietary regimen (P < 0.05), whereas only AVA group increased resting plasma glutathione (GSH) concentration (P < 0.05), decreased glutathione disulfide response to DR, and lowered erythrocyte GSH peroxidase activity (P < 0.05).


Our data of pre- and post-supplementation difference reflect an interaction between repeated measure effect of eccentric exercise and AVA in diet. Long-term AVA supplementation can attenuate blood inflammation markers, decrease ROS generation and NFkB activation, and increased antioxidant capacity during an eccentric exercise bout.


Antioxidant Avenanthramide Cytokine Exercise Inflammation 





Body mass index


Ceatine kinase


C-reactive protein


Downhill running




Glutathione disulfide


Glutathione peroxidase



(NF) κB

Nuclear factor-kappaB


Neutrophil respiratory burst


Reactive oxygen species


Superoxide dismutase


Total antioxidant capacity


Tumor necrosis factor-α



R.K. and L.L.J. designed research; R.K., J.R.D. and C.K. conducted research; R.K. analyzed data; R.K., C.K., Y.C., and L.L.J. wrote the paper; T.O.Z. formatted the paper; L.L.J. had primary responsibility for final content. All authors read and approved the final manuscript. This research was supported by a grant from the University of Wisconsin Foundation.


  1. Benbarek H, Deby-Dupont G, Deby C, Caudron I, Mathy-Hartert M, Lamy M, Serteyn D (1996) Experimental model for the study by chemiluminescence of the activation of isolated equine leucocytes. Res Vet Sci 61:59–64PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. Bruunsgaard H, Galbo H, Halkjaer-Kristensen J, Johansen TL, MacLean DA, Pedersen BK (1997) Exercise-induced increase in serum interleukin-6 in humans is related to muscle damage. J Physiol 99:833–841CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Chen CY, Milbury PE, Kwak HK, Collins FW, Samuel P, Blumberg JB (2004) Avenanthramides and phenolic acids from oats are bioavailable and act synergistically with vitamin C to enhance hamster and human LDL resistance to oxidation. J Nutr 143:1459–1466Google Scholar
  4. Chen CY, Milbury PE, Collins FW, Blumberg JB (2007) Avenanthramides are bioavailable and have antioxidant activity in humans after acute consumption of an enriched mixture from oats. J Nutr 137:1375–1382PubMedGoogle Scholar
  5. Collins FW (1989) Oat phenolics: avenanthramides, novel substituted N-cinnamoylanthranilate alkaloids from oat groats and hulls. J Agric Food Chem 37:60–66CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. Costelli P, Carbó N, Tessitore L, Bagby GJ, Lopez-Soriano FJ, Argilés JM, Baccino FM (1993) Tumor necrosis factor-alpha mediates changes in tissue protein turnover in a rat cancer cachexia model. J Clin Invest 92:2783–2789PubMedPubMedCentralCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Dimberg LH, Sunnerheim K, Sundberg B, Walsh K (2001) Stability of oat avenanthramides. Cereal Chem 78:278–281CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. Flohe L, Gunzler WA (1984) Assays of glutathione peroxidase. Methods Enzymol 105:114–121PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. Frey RS, Rahman A, Kefer JC, Minshall RD, Malik AB (2002) PKCzeta regulates TNF-alpha-induced activation of NADPH oxidase in endothelial cells. Circ Res 90:1012–1019PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. Goldfarb AH, Garten RS, Cho C, Chee PD, Chambers LA (2011) Effects of a fruit/berry/vegetable supplement on muscle function and oxidative stress. Med Sci Sports Exerc 43:501–508PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. Gomez-Cabrera MC, Domenech E, Romagnoli M, Arduini A, Borras C, Pallardo FV, Sastre J, Viña J (2008) Oral administration of vitamin C decreases muscle mitochondrial biogenesis and hampers training-induced adaptations in endurance performance. Am J Clin Nutr 87:142–149PubMedGoogle Scholar
  12. Guo W, Wise ML, Collins FW, Meydani M (2008) Avenanthramides, polyphenols from oats, inhibit IL-1β-induced NF-κB activation in endothelial cells. Free Radic Biol Med 44:415–429PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. Hamada K, Vannier E, Sacheck JM, Witsell AL, Roubenoff R (2005) Senescence of human skeletal muscle impairs the local inflammatory cytokine response to acute eccentric exercise. FASEB J 19:264–266PubMedGoogle Scholar
  14. Hirose L, Nosaka K, Newton M, Laveder A, Kano M, Peake J, Suzuki K (2004) Changes in inflammatory mediators following eccentric exercise of the elbow flexors. Exerc Immunol Rev 10:75–90PubMedGoogle Scholar
  15. Isaji M, Miyata H, Ajisawa Y, Yoshimura N (1998) Inhibition by tranilast of vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF)/vascular permeability factor (VPF)-induced increase in vascular permeability in rats. Life Sci 63:PL71–PL74PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. Ji LL, Fu R (1992) Responses of glutathione system and antioxidant enzymes to exhaustive exercise and hydroperoxide. J Appl Physiol 72:549–554PubMedGoogle Scholar
  17. Ji LL, Lay D, Chung E, Fu Y, Parkin K, Peterson DM (2003) Effects of avenanthramides on oxidant and antioxidant status in exercised rats. Nutr Res 23:1579–1590CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. Ji LL, Gomez-Cabrera MC, Vina J (2009) Role of antioxidants in muscle health and pathology. Infectious disorders special issue. Infect Disord Drug Targets 9:428–444PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. Koenig R, Dickman JR, Ji LL (2011) Avenanthramides are bioavailable and accumulate in hepatic, cardiac, and skeletal muscle tissue following oral gavage in rats. J Agr Food Chem 59:6438–6443CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  20. Koenig R, Dickman JR, Kang C, Zhang T, Chu Y-F, Ji LL (2014) Avenanthramide supplementation attenuates exercise-induced inflammation in postmenopausal women. Nutr J 13:21–31PubMedPubMedCentralCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  21. Li YP, Atkins CM, Sweatt JD, Reid MB (1999) Mitochondria mediate tumor necrosis factor-alpha/NF-kappaB signaling in skeletal muscle myotubes. Antioxid Redox Signal 1:97–104PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  22. Li JM, Fan LM, Christie MR, Shah AM (2005) Acute tumor necrosis factor alpha signaling via NADPH oxidase in microvascular endothelial cells: role of p47phox phosphorylation and binding to TRAF4. Mol Cell Biol 25:2320–2330PubMedPubMedCentralCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  23. Liao P, Zhou J, Ji LL, Zhang Y (2010) Eccentric contraction induces inflammatory responses in rat skeletal muscle: role of tumor necrosis factor-α. Am J Physiol Regul Integr 298:R599–R607CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  24. Liu L, Zubik L, Collins FW, Marko M, Meydani M (2004) The antiatherogenic potential of oat phenolic compounds. Atherosclerosis 175:39–49PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  25. Nie L, Wise ML, Peterson DM, Meydani M (2006a) Avenanthramide, a polyphenol from oats, inhibits vascular smooth muscle cell proliferation and enhances nitric oxide production. Atherosclerosis 186:260–266PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  26. Nie L, Wise M, Peterson D, Meydani M (2006b) Mechanism by which avenanthramide-c, a polyphenol of oats, blocks cell cycle progression in vascular smooth muscle cells. Free Radic Biol Med 41:702–708PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  27. Nieman DC, Henson DA, Smith LL, Utter AC, Vinci DM, Davis JM, Kaminsky DE, Shute M (2001) Cytokine changes after a marathon race. J Appl Physiol 91:109–114PubMedGoogle Scholar
  28. Pedersen BK, Steensber A, Schjerling P (2001) Muscle-derived interleukin-6: possible biological effects. J Physiol 536:329–337PubMedPubMedCentralCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  29. Peterson DM, Hahn MJ, Emmons CL (2002) Oat avenanthramides exhibit antioxidant activities in vitro. Food Chem 79:473–478CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  30. Proske U, Allen TJ (2005) Damage to skeletal muscle from eccentric exercise. Exerc Sport Sci Rev 333:98–104CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  31. Rahman I, Antonicelli F, MacNee W (1999) Molecular mechanism of the regulation of glutathione synthesis by tumor necrosis factor-α and dexamethasone in human alveolar epithelial cells. J Biol Chem 274:5088–5096PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  32. Re R, Pellegrini N, Proteggente A, Pannala A, Yang M, Rice-Evans C (1999) Antioxidant activity applying an improved ABTS radical cation decolorization assay. Free Radic Biol Med 26:1231–1237PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  33. Ristow M, Zarse K, Oberbach A, Klöting N, Birringer M, Kiehntopf M, Stumvoll M, Kahn CR, Blüher M (2009) Antioxidants prevent health-promoting effects of physical exercise in humans. Proc Natl Acad Sci USA 106:8665–8670PubMedPubMedCentralCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  34. Sun M, Zigman S (1978) An improved spectrophotometric assay for superoxide dismutase based on epinephrine autoxidation. Anal Biochem 90:81–89PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  35. Sur R, Nigam A, Grote D, Liebel F, Southall MD (2008) Avenanthramides, polyphenols from oats, exhibit anti-inflammatory and anti-itch activity. Arch Dermatol Res 300:569–574PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  36. Tanzer ML, Gilvarg C (1959) Creatine and creatine kinase measurement. J Biol Chem 234:3201–3204PubMedGoogle Scholar
  37. Tilg H, Trehu E, Atkins MB, Dinarello CA, Mier JW (1994) Interleukin-6 (IL-6) as an anti-inflammatory cytokine: induction of circulating IL-1 receptor antagonist and soluble tumor necrosis factor receptor p55. Blood 83:113–118PubMedGoogle Scholar
  38. Zembron-Lacny A, Naczk M, Gajewski M, Ostapiuk-Karolczuk J, Dziewiecka H, Kasperska A, Szyszka K (2010) Changes of muscle-derived cytokines in relation to thiol redox status and reactive oxygen and nitrogen species. Physiol Res 59:945–951PubMedGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  • Ryan T. Koenig
    • 1
  • Jonathan R. Dickman
    • 1
  • Choung-Hun Kang
    • 2
  • Tianou Zhang
    • 2
  • Yi-Fang Chu
    • 3
  • Li Li Ji
    • 1
    • 2
    Email author
  1. 1.Department of KinesiologyUniversity of WisconsinMadisonUSA
  2. 2.Laboratory of Physiological Hygiene and Exercise ScienceUniversity of MinnesotaMinneapolisUSA
  3. 3.Quaker Oats Center of ExcellencePepsiCo NutritionBarringtonUSA

Personalised recommendations