Journal of Molecular Neuroscience

, Volume 65, Issue 4, pp 467–471 | Cite as

Association Between Objectively Measured Physical Activity and Plasma BDNF in Adolescents: DADOS Study

  • M. R. Beltran-Valls
  • M. Adelantado-Renau
  • D. Moliner-UrdialesEmail author


Brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) is suggested to play a key role in moderating the benefits of physical activity (PA) on cognition. Previous research found that PA may have an impact on peripheral BDNF expression. The aim of our study was to analyze the association between objectively measured PA with circulating BDNF in a group of active adolescents. Two hundred thirty-four adolescents (132 boys) aged 13.9 ± 0.3 years old from the DADOS study were included in this cross-sectional analysis. PA was assessed by GENEActiv triaxial accelerometer. Participants wore the accelerometer on their non-dominant wrist for 6 consecutive 24-h days, including weekends. PA was expressed as the average (min/day) of light, moderate, and vigorous PA. Fasting plasma BDNF concentrations at rest were measured using an enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay. Partial correlations and linear regression analyses were performed with a significance level established at p < 0.05. No correlations were found between BDNF and PA variables. Plasma levels of BDNF at rest were not significantly associated with daily PA in either boys or girls (p > 0.05). Based on previous research and our own data, the association between daily PA and baseline levels of BDNF remains inconclusive. Further research is needed to shed light on the relationship between regular PA and BDNF in adolescents.


Adolescence Health Active behavior Cognition Neurotrophins 



DADOS study is funded by the Spanish Ministry of Economy and Competitiveness, MINECO (DEP2013-45515-R) and by the University Jaume I of Castellon, UJI (P1 1A2015-05). This work is partly supported by a Sunny Sport research grant from the Schweppes Suntory Spain Company. M.A.R is supported by a Predoctoral Research Grant from UJI (PREDOC/2015/13).

Compliance with Ethical Standards

The study was performed following the ethical guidelines of the Declaration of Helsinki 1961 (revision of Fortaleza 2013), and the study protocol was approved by the Research Ethics Committee of the University Jaume I (Spain).

Conflict of Interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • M. R. Beltran-Valls
    • 1
    • 2
  • M. Adelantado-Renau
    • 1
  • D. Moliner-Urdiales
    • 1
    Email author
  1. 1.LIFE Research GroupUniversity Jaume ICastellón de la PlanaSpain
  2. 2.EUSES Health and Sport Sciences SchoolRovira i Virgili UniversityAmpostaSpain

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