Combined hyperlipidemia is associated with increased exercise-induced muscle protein release which is improved by triglyceride-lowering intervention

J. W.A. Smit, T. W.A. De Bruin, E. M.W. Eekhoff, J. Glatz, D. W. Erkelens

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2 Citations (Scopus)


Although myopathy is considered an adverse effect of treatment with 3- hydroxy-3-methylglutaryl-coenzyme A (HMG-CoA) reductase inhibitors and fibrates in combined hyperlipidemia, the present study was performed to investigate whether combined hyperlipidemia itself is associated with skeletal muscle pathology and whether lipid-lowering intervention has beneficial effects. To investigate whether combined hyperlipidemia is associated with skeletal muscle pathology, 10 male patients and 15 normolipidemic controls underwent a 45-minute standardized bicycle ergometer test at a load of 2 W/kg lean body mass (parallel study). One- and 8-hour postexercise increments in the plasma level of the muscle proteins creatine kinase (CK), myoglobin (Mb), and fatty acid-binding protein (FABP) were assessed as parameters for (subclinical) skeletal muscle pathology. The 8- hour postexercise increments in CK and Mb and 1-hour postexercise increment in Mb were significantly higher in patients than in controls, thus indicating increased exercise-induced muscle membrane permeability in combined hyperlipidemia. To investigate the effects of lipid-lowering intervention on skeletal muscle in combined hyperlipidemia, 21 subjects with combined hyperlipidemia were randomized double-blindly to receive 6 weeks of treatment with fluvastatin 40 mg/d, gemfibrozil 600 mg twice daily, or combination therapy. All subjects underwent an ergometer test before and after treatment. Gemfibrozil treatment alone reduced the CK increments 8 hours postexercise by 47% and the FABP increments 1 and 8 hours postexercise by 83% and 101%, respectively (all P < .05). Combined treatment reduced Mb increments 1 hour postexercise by 54% and FABP increments 8 hours postexercise by 44% (all P < .05). A highly significant correlation existed between therapy-induced changes in plasma triglycerides and changes in postexercise increments of FABP and Mb. In conclusion, combined hyperlipidemia is associated with an increased exercise-induced release of muscle proteins, which is ameliorated by triglyceride-lowering intervention. As FABP is an indicator for ischemia- induced skeletal muscle pathology, a possible explanation is the impaired muscle blood flow during hypertriglyceridemia, which may be reversed by triglyceridelowering intervention. The mechanism and clinical relevance of these findings remain to be investigated.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1518-1523
Number of pages6
JournalMetabolism: Clinical and Experimental
Issue number12
Publication statusPublished - 1999

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