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Year : 2017  |  Volume : 7  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 1-8

Exercise training provides cardioprotection by activating and coupling endothelial nitric oxide synthase via a β3-adrenergic receptor-AMP-activated protein kinase signaling pathway

1 Department of Surgery, Division of Cardiothoracic Surgery, Carlyle Fraser Heart Center, Emory University School of Medicine, Atlanta, GA, USA
2 Department of Medicine, Division of Cardiology, Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, Baltimore, MD, USA
3 Department of Medicine, Division of Cardiology, Emory University School of Medicine, Atlanta, GA, USA

Correspondence Address:
John W Calvert
Department of Surgery, Division of Cardiothoracic Surgery, Carlyle Fraser Heart Center, Emory University School of Medicine, Atlanta, GA
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Source of Support: This work was supported by funding from the Carlyle Fraser Heart Center of Emory University Hospital Midtown, USA., Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/2045-9912.202904

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Exercise training confers sustainable protection against ischemia/reperfusion injury. However, the mechanism by which this process occurs is not fully understood. Previously, it was shown that β3-adrenergic receptors (β3-ARs) play a critical role in regulating the activation of endothelial nitric oxide synthase (eNOS) in response to exercise and play a critical role in exercise-mediated cardioprotection. Intriguingly, a deficiency in β3-ARs led to increased myocardial injury following exercise training. The purpose of the current study was to determine mechanisms by which β3-ARs are linked to eNOS activation and to determine the mechanism responsible for the exacerbated ischemia/reperfusion injury displayed by β3-AR deficient (β3-AR KO) mice after exercise training. Wild-type (n = 37) and β3-AR KO ( n = 40) mice were subjected to voluntary wheel running for 4 weeks. Western blot analysis revealed that neither protein kinase B nor protein kinase A linked β3-ARs to eNOS following exercise training. However, analysis revealed a role for AMP-activated protein kinase (AMPK). Specifically, exercise training increased the phosphorylation of AMPK in the hearts of wild-type mice, but failed to do so in the hearts of β3-AR KO mice. Additional studies revealed that exercise training rendered eNOS less coupled and increased NOS-dependent superoxide levels in β3-AR KO mice. Finally, supplementing β3-AR KO mice with the eNOS coupler, tetrahydrobiopterin, during the final week of exercise training reduced myocardial infarction. These findings provide important information that exercise training protects the heart in the setting of myocardial ischemia/reperfusion injury by activating and coupling eNOS via the stimulation of a β3-AR-AMPK signaling pathway.

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