Pennington Biomedical to select 375 participants for 2021 research study regarding benefits of exercise
Engaging in regular exercise is typically viewed as a positive activity that results in improved physical and mental health.
But, does regular exercise affect some people more positively than others? And if so, why?
These are questions researchers at Pennington Biomedical Research Center feel compelled to investigate.
So far, they've developed a theory that a person's response to exercise is a direct result of their mitochondria, which are the subcellular structures that help our body by converting sugar into energy.
Armed with their theory, its related questions, and a new $2.5 million award from the National Institutes of Health’s National Institute on Aging, Pennington's researchers will investigate the matter by way of a four-year study that will require the assistance of 375 participants.
Dr. Owen Carmichael, Ph.D., Professor and Director of Biomedical Imaging at Pennington Biomedical explained that the four-year study will compare mitochondria responses between younger and older adults who undergo exercise training.
He also expects to identify molecular factors that promote or discourage a positive mitochondrial change in addition to shedding lighton several theories, including that:
-Exercise will not improve mitochondrial function for a certain portion of the population.
-Age will not limit the mitochondrial response to exercise.
-Aerobic training will provide more mitochondrial capacity improvements than resistance training, regardless of age.
Pennington Biomedical Executive Director John Kirwan, Ph.D., said a better understanding of the biology behind the benefits of exercise will advance personalized medicine.
“In the long term, we believe the study’s findings will help physicians use each individual's unique biological characteristics to precisely tailor exercise training for that person.
In effect, physicians will be able to prescribe an exercise regimen that maximizes the health benefits for each individual patient,” Dr. Kirwan said.
As previously mentioned, the study will involve around 375 participants, and Pennington Biomedical plans to begin recruiting volunteers in the Spring of 2021.
Interested individuals should visit www.pbrc.edu/clinical-trials/#studylist for updates.