Skeletal muscle Oxidative function in vivo and ex vivo in athletes with marked hypertrophy from resistance training


Oxidative function during exercise was evaluated in 11 young athletes with marked skeletal muscle hypertrophy induced by long-term resistance training (RTA; body mass 102.6 ± 7.3 kg, mean ± SD) and 11 controls (CTRL; body mass 77.8 ± 6.0 kg). Pulmonary O2 uptake (V̇o 2) and vastus lateralis muscle fractional O2extraction (by near-infrared spectroscopy) were determined during an incremental cycle ergometer (CE) and one-leg knee-extension (KE) exercise. Mitochondrial respiration was evaluated ex vivo by high-resolution respirometry in permeabilized vastus lateralis fibers obtained by biopsy. Quadriceps femoris muscle cross-sectional area, volume (determined by magnetic resonance imaging), and strength were greater in RTA vs. CTRL (by ∼40%, ∼33%, and ∼20%, respectively). V̇o2peak during CE was higher in RTA vs. CTRL (4.05 ± 0.64 vs. 3.56 ± 0.30 l/min); no difference between groups was observed during KE. The O2 cost of CE exercise was not different between groups. When divided per muscle mass (for CE) or quadriceps muscle mass (for KE), V̇o2 peak was lower (by 15-20%) in RTA vs. CTRL. Vastus lateralis fractional O2 extraction was lower in RTA vs. CTRL at all work rates, during both CE and KE. RTA had higher ADP-stimulated mitochondrial respiration (56.7 ± 23.7 pmol O2˙s-1˙mg -1 ww) vs. CTRL (35.7 ± 10.2 pmol O2˙s -1mg-1 ww) and a tighter coupling of oxidative phosphorylation. In RTA, the greater muscle mass and maximal force and the enhanced mitochondrial respiration seem to compensate for the hypertrophy-induced impaired peripheral O2 diffusion. The net results are an enhanced whole body oxidative function at peak exercise and unchanged efficiency and O2 cost at submaximal exercise, despite a much greater body mass. Copyright © 2013 the American Physiological Society.

Journal of Applied Physiology