Exercise induces autophagy in peripheral tissues and in the brain

Congcong He, Rhea Sumpter, Beth Levine

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

103 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

We recently identified physical exercise as a newly defined inducer of autophagy in vivo. Exercise induced autophagy in multiple organs involved in metabolic regulation, such as muscle, liver, pancreas and adipose tissue. To study the physiological role of exercise-induced autophagy, we generated mice with a knock-in nonphosphorylatable mutation in BCL2 (Thr69Ala, Ser70Ala and Ser84Ala) (BCL2 AAA) that are defective in exercise- and starvation-induced autophagy but not in basal autophagy. We found that BCL2 AAA mice could not run on a treadmill as long as wild-type mice, and did not undergo exercise-mediated increases in skeletal glucose muscle uptake. Unlike wildtype mice, the BCL2 AAA mice failed to reverse high-fat diet-induced glucose intolerance after 8 weeks of exercise training, possibly due to defects in signaling pathways that regulate muscle glucose uptake and metabolism during exercise. Together, these findings suggested a hitherto unknown important role of autophagy in mediating exercise-induced metabolic benefits. In the present addendum, we show that treadmill exercise also induces autophagy in the cerebral cortex of adult mice. This observation raises the intriguing question of whether autophagy may in part mediate the beneficial effects of exercise in neurodegeneration, adult neurogenesis and improved cognitive function.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1548-1551
Number of pages4
JournalAutophagy
Volume8
Issue number10
DOIs
StatePublished - Oct 2012

Fingerprint

Autophagy
Brain
Exercise
Glucose
Muscles
Glucose Intolerance
Neurogenesis
High Fat Diet
Starvation
Cerebral Cortex
Cognition
Adipose Tissue
Pancreas
Skeletal Muscle
Mutation
Liver

Keywords

  • Autophagy
  • BCL2
  • Brain
  • Exercise
  • Metabolism

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cell Biology
  • Molecular Biology

Cite this

Exercise induces autophagy in peripheral tissues and in the brain. / He, Congcong; Sumpter, Rhea; Levine, Beth.

In: Autophagy, Vol. 8, No. 10, 10.2012, p. 1548-1551.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

He, Congcong ; Sumpter, Rhea ; Levine, Beth. / Exercise induces autophagy in peripheral tissues and in the brain. In: Autophagy. 2012 ; Vol. 8, No. 10. pp. 1548-1551.
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