Basic science behind the cardiovascular benefits of exercise

Mathew G. Wilson, Georgina M. Ellison, N. Tim Cable

    Research output: Contribution to journalReview article

    38 Citations (Scopus)

    Abstract

    Cardiorespiratory fitness is a strong predictor of cardiovascular (CV) disease and all-cause mortality, with increases in cardiorespiratory fitness associated with corresponding decreases in CV disease risk. The effects of exercise upon the myocardium and vascular system are dependent upon the frequency, intensity and duration of the exercise itself. Following a prolonged period (≥ 6 months) of regular intensive exercise in previously untrained individuals, resting and submaximal exercising heart rates are typically 5-20 beats lower, with an increase in stroke volume of ∼20% and enhanced myocardial contractility. Structurally, all four heart chambers increase in volume with mild increases in wall thickness, resulting in greater cardiac mass due to increased myocardial cell size. With this in mind, the present paper aims to review the basic science behind the CV benefits of exercise. Attention will be paid to understanding (1) the relationship between exercise and cardiac remodelling; (2) the cardiac cellular and molecular adaptations in response to exercise, including the examination of molecular mechanisms of physiological cardiac growth and applying these mechanisms to identify new therapeutic targets to prevent or reverse pathological remodelling and heart failure; and (3) vascular adaptations in response to exercise. Finally, this review will briefly examine how to optimise the CV benefits of exercise by considering how much and how intense exercise should be.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)758-765
    Number of pages8
    JournalHeart
    Volume101
    Issue number10
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - 15 May 2015

    Fingerprint

    Blood Vessels
    Cardiovascular Diseases
    Cell Size
    Stroke Volume
    Myocardium
    Heart Failure
    Heart Rate
    Mortality
    Growth
    Cardiorespiratory Fitness
    Therapeutics

    Cite this

    Wilson, M. G., Ellison, G. M., & Cable, N. T. (2015). Basic science behind the cardiovascular benefits of exercise. Heart, 101(10), 758-765. https://doi.org/10.1136/heartjnl-2014-306596
    Wilson, Mathew G. ; Ellison, Georgina M. ; Cable, N. Tim. / Basic science behind the cardiovascular benefits of exercise. In: Heart. 2015 ; Vol. 101, No. 10. pp. 758-765.
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    Wilson, MG, Ellison, GM & Cable, NT 2015, 'Basic science behind the cardiovascular benefits of exercise', Heart, vol. 101, no. 10, pp. 758-765. https://doi.org/10.1136/heartjnl-2014-306596

    Basic science behind the cardiovascular benefits of exercise. / Wilson, Mathew G.; Ellison, Georgina M.; Cable, N. Tim.

    In: Heart, Vol. 101, No. 10, 15.05.2015, p. 758-765.

    Research output: Contribution to journalReview article

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