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Issue 127 Spring 2018

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Extracellular vesicles in tissue crosstalk during exercise

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The health benefits of exercise are well known. Physical inactivity is associated with impaired metabolic homeostasis, including decreased insulin sensitivity and accumulation of visceral adiposity. Extracellular vesicles (EV) are increasingly recognised as an essential mechanism of intercellular communication and are important carriers of proteins, lipids and nucleic acids in plasma.

Whitham et al. used nano-ultra-high-performance liquid chromatography (UHPLC) tandem mass spectrometry to perform deep proteomic analysis of femoral artery plasma samples from healthy male volunteers. These were obtained at rest, immediately after exercise and 4 hours following exercise (recovery) to identify the exercise-induced EV proteome.

They found that exercise induced a significant increase in proteins associated with a wide range of biological processes, including glycolysis, and that exercise-induced EV homed to the liver. Further, femoral arteriovenous difference analysis identified 35 novel candidate myokines that are released into the circulation independently of classical secretion. Although future functional validation of these myokines is needed, this study demonstrates a new paradigm by which tissue crosstalk during exercise can exert systemic biological effects.

Read the full article in Cell Metabolism 27 237–251




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