Effects of resveratrol on the repair of skeletal muscle microdamage after eccentric exercise

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As a natural antioxidant and free radicals clearer, resveratrol has many important pharmacological effects, such as clearing free radicals and relieving lipid peroxidation. However, studies on its effects on lessening skeletal muscle damage and promoting recovery are still few.


To investigate the influence of resveratrol on skeletal muscle ultra-microstructure damage, the serum malonaldehyde (MDA) concentration and the intracellular Ca2+ concentration after eccentric exercise.


A controlled observational animal experiment was carried out in the Southern Medical University from August 2007 to June 2008.


A total of 72 adult male SD rats, which were adaptively fed for 3 days in laboratory, were divided into a distilled water group (n =40) and a resveratrol group (n =32). Resveratrol was purchased from Hunan Huaguang Biological Products Co., Ltd.


Rats in the resveratrol group were injected intraperitoneally with 60 mg/kg resveratrol preparation once a day and the distilled water group with distilled water of the same dose. After 2 weeks of injection, they were tested by a 120-minute one trial downhill running on the animal treadmill at a speed of 16 m/min and a gradient of 16°, with a 2-minute rest following every 5-minute exercise. In the test, rats were driven to run by human or sound stimulus instead of electrical stimulus.


The soleus muscle fibers Z-band of rats was observed under the electron microscope before exercise, immediately post-exercise, 20, 48 and 72 hours post-exercise respectively. The serum MDA concentration was determined with TAB method. The intracellular Ca2+ concentration was detected by flow cytometry.


Compared with the distilled water group, the muscle fibers damage of rats in the resveratrol group was lessened. According to the detection made immediately post-exercise, 24, 48 and 72 hours post-exercise, Z-band abnormal percentages of skeletal muscles in the resveratrol group decreased by 50.34%, 52.67%, 52.65% and 53.26% respectively (P < 0.05), the serum MDA concentrations decreased by 27.7%, 29.56%, 34.38% and 27.79% respectively (P < 0.05) and the intracellular Ca2+ concentration decreased by 27.53%, 25.84%, 22.14% and 11.62% respectively (P < 0.05), compared with those of the distilled group.


Resveratrol is effective in lowering the serum MDA and intracellular Ca2+ concentration after eccentric exercise and lessening the excess-induced muscle damage.

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