Author(s): Pedersen BK
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Abstract Physical inactivity has recently been identified as a major and independent risk factor for the development of dementia and cognitive decline. In addition to the effect of exercise with regard to protection against neurodegenerative diseases, it is well-established that physical inactivity increases the risk of type 2 diabetes, cardiovascular diseases (CVD), colon cancer and postmenopausal breast cancer. These diseases constitute a network of related diseases, also called "the diseasome of physical inactivity". In this review, physical inactivity is given the central role as an independent and strong risk factor for accumulation of visceral fat and consequently the activation of a network of systemic inflammatory pathways, which promote development of neurodegeneration as well as insulin resistance, atherosclerosis, and tumour growth. The recent finding that muscles produce and release myokines provides a conceptual basis for understanding some of the molecular mechanisms underlying organ cross talk, including muscle-fat cross talk. Accumulating data suggest that contracting skeletal muscles release myokines, which may work in a hormone-like fashion, exerting specific endocrine effects on visceral fat or mediating direct anti-inflammatory effects. Other myokines work locally within the muscle via paracrine mechanisms, exerting their effects on signalling pathways involved in fat oxidation. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
This article was published in Brain Behav Immun
and referenced in Journal of Obesity & Weight Loss Therapy