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Oxidative stress induced by intermittent exposure at a simulated altitude of 4000 m decreases mitochondrial superoxide dismutase content in soleus muscle of rats

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The effects were examined of 6-month intermittent hypobaric (4000 m) exposure on the antioxidant enzyme systems in soleus and tibialis muscles of rats. At the end of the 6-month experimental exposure, the six rats in both the exposed group and the control group were sacrificed. Immunoreactive mitochondrial superoxide dismutase (Mn-SOD) contents were measured as well as the activities of antioxidant enzymes [Mn-SOD, cytosolic SOD (Cu,Zn-SOD), catalase (CAT), and glutathione peroxidase (GPX)]. Thiobarbituric acid-reactive substances (TBARS) were also determined as an indicator of lipid peroxidation. The high altitude exposure resulted in a marked increase in TBARS content in soleus muscle, suggesting increased levels of oxygen free radicals. Conversely, significant decreases in both Mn-SOD content and activity in solens muscle were oted affer exposure. Such trends were not noticed in tibialis muscle. On the other hand, no significant changes in Cu,Zn-SOD, CAT, or GPX were observed in either muscle. These results suggested that the increases in lipid peroxidation were most probably a result of decreased Mn-SOD function which was more depressed in oxidative than in glycolytic muscle.

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Radák, Z., Lee, K., Choi, W. et al. Oxidative stress induced by intermittent exposure at a simulated altitude of 4000 m decreases mitochondrial superoxide dismutase content in soleus muscle of rats. Europ. J. Appl. Physiol. 69, 392–395 (1994). https://doi.org/10.1007/BF00865401

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Key words

  • Intermittent exposure to high altitude
  • Antioxidant enzymes
  • Lipid peroxidation
  • Fibre type
  • Mitochondrial superoxide dismutase