Author(s): Davis JM, Murphy EA, Brown AS, Carmichael MD, Ghaffar A,
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Abstract Both moderate exercise and the soluble oat fiber beta-glucan can increase immune function and decrease risk of infection, but no information exists on their possible combined effects. This study tested the effects of moderate exercise and oat beta-glucan on respiratory infection, macrophage antiviral resistance, and natural killer (NK) cell cytotoxicity. Mice were assigned to four groups: exercise and water, exercise and oat beta-glucan, control water, or control oat beta-glucan. Oat beta-glucan was fed in the drinking water for 10 days before intranasal inoculation of herpes simplex virus type 1 (HSV-1) or euthanasia. Exercise consisted of treadmill running (1 h/day) for 6 days. Macrophage resistance to HSV-1 was increased with both exercise and oat beta-glucan, whereas NK cell cytotoxicity was only increased with exercise. Exercise was also associated with a 45 and 38\% decrease in morbidity and mortality, respectively. Mortality was also decreased with oat beta-glucan, but this effect did not reach statistical significance. No additive effects of exercise and oat beta-glucan were found. These data confirm a positive effect of both moderate exercise and oat beta-glucan on immune function, but only moderate exercise was associated with a significant reduction in the risk of upper respiratory tract infection in this model.
This article was published in Am J Physiol Regul Integr Comp Physiol
and referenced in Journal of Sports Medicine & Doping Studies