The effect of 12 weeks of aerobic exercise on mitochondrial dynamics in cardiac myocytes of type 2 diabetic rats

Original Article



Mitochondrial dynamics disorders contribute to the pathogenesis of many diseases involving type 2 diabetes. It appears that exercise training is a strategy for reversing the unbalance between fusion and fission, but, to our understanding, effects of aerobic exercise on this particular issue have not been studied in cardiac myocytes.


To demonstrate if 12 weeks of aerobic exercise has a significant impact on Dynamin Related Protein 1 (DRP1), Mitofusin2 (MFN2) and Optic Atrophy 1 (OPA1) expressions in cardiac muscle of type 2 diabetic rats.


10 Wistar rats with an average age of 10 weeks were divided randomly into two groups of five: diabetic control and diabetic exercise. The latter was submitted to a 12-week (5 days a week, 30 min/day) aerobic exercise. 48 h after the last session of exercise, cardiac samples were obtained for genetic experiments. T-test was used for data analysis at p ≤ 0.05.


OPA1 expression was increased significantly (p = 0.03) while MFN2 and DRP1 expressions were elevated insignificantly (p = 0.165, p = 0.19).


This study shows that aerobic training is likely to regulate mitochondrial fission and fusion in cardiac muscle of type 2 diabetic rats. Although more research is necessary.


Mitochondrial dynamics Type 2 diabetes Aerobic exercise MFN2 OPA1 DRP1 



This research did not receive any specific grant from funding agencies in the public, commercial, or not-for-profit sectors.

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

The authors have no conflict of interest relevant to this article.

Ethical approval

All applicable international, national, and/or institutional guidelines for the care and use of animals were followed.

Informed consent

For this type of study, formal consent is not required.


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© Springer-Verlag Italia S.r.l., part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Faculty of Physical Education and Sports SciencesUniversity of TehranTehranIran
  2. 2.TehranIran

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