Lakka TA, Venäläinen JM, Rauramaa R, Salonen R, Tuomilehto J, Salonen JT. Relation of leisure-time physical activity and cardiorespiratory fitness to the risk of acute myocardial infarction in men. N Engl J Med 330, 1549-1554
Previous studies have suggested that higher levels of regular physical activity and cardiorespiratory fitness are associated with a reduced risk of coronary heart disease. We investigated the independent associations of physical activity during leisure time and maximal oxygen uptake (a measure of cardiorespiratory fitness) with the risk of acute myocardial infarction.
During the period 1984 to 1989, we performed base-line examinations in 1453 men 42 to 60 years old who did not report having cardiovascular disease or cancer. Physical activity was assessed quantitatively with a detailed questionnaire, and maximal oxygen uptake was measured directly by exercise testing. During an average follow-up of 4.9 years, 42 of the 1166 men with normal electrocardiograms at base line had a first acute myocardial infarction.
After adjustment for age and the year of examination, the relative hazard (risk) of myocardial infarction in the third of subjects with the highest level of physical activity (> 2.2 hours per week) was 0.31 (95 percent confidence interval, 0.12 to 0.85; P = 0.02), as compared with the third with the lowest level (P = 0.04 for linear trend over all three groups). The relative hazard in the third with the highest maximal oxygen uptake (> 2.7 liters per minute) was 0.26 (95 percent confidence interval, 0.10 to 0.68; P = 0.006) (P = 0.006 for linear trend), after adjustment for age, the year and season when the examination was performed, weight, height, and the type of respiratory-gas analyzer used. After up to 17 confounding variables were controlled for, the relative hazards for the third of subjects with the highest level of physical activity (0.34; 95 percent confidence interval, 0.12 to 0.94; P = 0.04) and maximal oxygen uptake (0.35; 95 percent confidence interval, 0.13 to 0.92; P = 0.03), as compared with the values in the lowest third, were significantly (P < 0.05) less than 1.0.
Higher levels of both leisure-time physical activity and cardiorespiratory fitness had a strong, graded, inverse association with the risk of acute myocardial infarction, supporting the idea that lower levels of physical activity and cardiorespiratory fitness are independent risk factors for coronary heart disease.
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"Nonetheless, similar to our findings, other studies have also observed an association between CRF and abnormal ECG during exercise testing. Lakka et al.
 reported higher levels of both leisure-time PA and CRF had a strong, graded, inverse association with the risk of ST segment depression during exercise and acute myocardial infarction during follow-up. Church et al.
 also noticed a significant relationship among CRF, abnormal exercise ECG, and future CVD mortality. "
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Background
High levels of physical activity (PA) and cardiorespiratory fitness (CRF) are each associated with a favorable cardiovascular disease (CVD) risk profile. However, the relationship between CRF and obesity is still inconsistent across studies, and there has been no thorough exploration of the independent contribution of CRF to different CVD risk factors in Chinese women. This study investigated the relationship between CRF and CVD risk factors in 40–49 year old women in Beijing.
The study included 231 urban-dwelling asymptomatic 40–49 year old women. Body mass index (BMI), body fat percentage (BF%), blood glucose, blood lipids, blood pressure, and pulse wave velocity (PWV) were measured at rest. Cycle ergometer exercise tests were conducted to assess CRF as indicated by maximal oxygen uptake (VO2max). Participants were categorized into three CRF levels (low, moderate and high).
High CRF level was associated with significantly less BF%, lower PWV, and higher weekly physical activity compared with low and moderate CRF (P < 0.05). Compared to high CRF, the odds ratios for having ≥3 main CVD risk factors (overweight, hypertension, and dyslipidemia) in low and moderate CRF were 2.09 (95% CI: 1.48-2.94) and 1.84 (95% CI: 1.29-2.62), respectively. The proportion of participants with clinical ST segment depression and prolonged QTC interval during cycle ergometer testing was significantly higher in women with low CRF.
Overall, Chinese middle-aged women demonstrated a moderate level of CRF. CRF was independently associated with CVD risk factors, including overweight, hypertension, dyslipidemia, arterial stiffness, and abnormal ECG during exercise, with the least fit women exhibiting the highest number of CVD risk factors.
Full-text · Article · May 2014 · BMC Women's Health
"Exercise stimuli have been extensively shown to modulate the heart proteome [94, 96–102] which is normally followed by an improvement in aerobic capacity . Furthermore, improved aerobic capacity is an independent factor for health status, being also inversely correlated with cardiovascular diseases , with exercise being a strong factor for preventing and treating hypertension and associated pathologies such as obesity and diabetes . Moreover, exercise is a nonpharmacologic agent and the main choice for hypertension treatment among other cardiovascular diseases, such as heart failure and myocardial infarction . "
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Left ventricle hypertrophy is a common outcome of pressure overload
stimulus closely associated with hypertension. This process is triggered by
adverse molecular signalling, gene expression and proteome alteration.
Proteomic research has revealed that several molecular targets are associated
with pathologic cardiac hypertrophy, including angiotensin II, Endotelin-1 and
isoproterol. Several metabolic, contractile and stress-related proteins are shown
to be altered in cardiac hypertrophy derived by hypertension. On the other
hand, exercise is a non-pharmacologic agent used for hypertension treatment,
where cardiac hypertrophy induced by exercise training is characterized by
improvement in cardiac function and resistance against ischemic insult. Despite
the scarcity of proteomic research performed with exercise, healthy and
pathologic heart proteomes are shown to be modulated in a completely different
way. Hence, the altered proteome induced by exercise is mostly associated with
cardioprotective aspects such as contractile and metabolic improvement and
physiologic cardiac hypertrophy. The present review, therefore, describes
relevant studies involving the molecular characteristics and alterations from
hypertensive induced and exercise induced hypertrophy, as well as the main
proteomic research performed in this field. Furthermore, proteomic research
into the effect of hypertension on other target-demerged organs is examined.
Full-text · Article · Apr 2014 · BioMed Research International
"The importance of physical exercise in cardiovascular disease prevention is evident [1,2]. Physical fitness can mitigate clinically relevant risk factors including hypertension, diabetes mellitus, or dyslipidemia . "
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Physical activity is believed to exert a beneficial effect on functional and cognitive rehabilitation of patients with stroke. Although studies have addressed the impact of physical exercise in cerebrovascular prevention and rehabilitation, the underlying mechanisms leading to improvement are poorly understood. Training-induced increase of cerebral perfusion is a possible mediating mechanism. Our exploratory study aims to investigate training-induced changes in blood biomarker levels and magnetic resonance imaging in patients with subacute ischemic stroke.Methods/design: This biomarker-driven study uses an observational design to examine a subgroup of patients in the randomized, controlled PHYS-STROKE trial. In PHYS-STROKE, 215 patients with subacute stroke (hemorrhagic and ischemic) receive either 4 weeks of physical training (aerobic training, 5 times a week, for 50 minutes) or 4 weeks of relaxation sessions (5 times a week, for 50 minutes). A convenience sample of 100 of these patients with ischemic stroke will be included in BAPTISe and will receive magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scans and an additional blood draw before and after the PHYS-STROKE intervention. Imaging scans will address parameters of cerebral perfusion, vessel size imaging, and microvessel density (the Q factor) to estimate the degree of neovascularization in the brain. Blood tests will determine several parameters of immunity, inflammation, endothelial function, and lipometabolism. Primary objective of this study is to evaluate differential changes in MRI and blood-derived biomarkers between groups. Other endpoints are next cerebrovascular events and functional status of the patient after the intervention and after 3 months assessed by functional scores, in particular walking speed and Barthel index (co-primary endpoints of PHYS-STROKE). Additionally, we will assess the association between functional outcomes and biomarkers including imaging results. For all endpoints we will compare changes between patients who received physical fitness training and patients who had relaxation sessions.
This exploratory study will be the first to investigate the effects of physical fitness training in patients with ischemic stroke on MRI-based cerebral perfusion, pertinent blood biomarker levels, and functional outcome. The study may have an impact on current patient rehabilitation strategies and reveal important information about the roles of MRI and blood-derived biomarkers in ischemic stroke.Trial registration: NCT01954797.