Response of high-sensitivity C-reactive protein to exercise training in an at-risk population.
BACKGROUND: High-sensitivity C-reactive protein (hsCRP) is promoted as an independent predictor of atherosclerotic risk. In addition, cardiorespiratory fitness is inversely related to hsCRP in single-sex cross-sectional analyses. Our objective was to determine if modulating fitness with exercise training imposes changes in high-sensitivity C-reactive protein in a mixed-sex population at risk for cardiovascular disease. METHODS: We studied baseline and postintervention plasma hsCRP in 193 sedentary, overweight to mildly obese, dyslipidemic men and women who were randomized to 6 months of inactivity or 1 of 3 aerobic exercise groups: low amount-moderate intensity (energy equivalent of approximately 19.3 km/wk at 40%-55% peak VO2), low amount-high intensity (energy equivalent of approximately 19.3 km/wk at 65%-80% peak VO2), or high amount-high intensity (energy equivalent of approximately 32.2 km/wk at 65%-80% peak VO2). RESULTS: At baseline, the study population was at intermediate to high cardiovascular risk as defined by hsCRP. Cardiorespiratory fitness was inversely related to hsCRP (P < .001) even after adjusting for significant and expected sex differences. Fitness, hormone replacement therapy use, and high-density lipoprotein cholesterol accounted for the sex difference in baseline hsCRP. Fitness, high-density lipoprotein cholesterol, fasting insulin, hormone replacement therapy, and visceral adiposity were all independent predictors for baseline hsCRP (r2 = 0.34 for the entire model, P < .0001). However, despite significant improvements in fitness, visceral adiposity, subcutaneous adiposity, and insulin sensitivity, hsCRP did not change in response to exercise training (P > .20). CONCLUSIONS: Cardiorespiratory fitness is inversely related to hsCRP independent of sex and accounts for most of the large sex disparity in hsCRP. Nonetheless, in the absence of a significant change in diet, 6 months of aerobic exercise training does not produce a significant change in hsCRP in an at-risk population.
Huffman, KM; Samsa, GP; Slentz, CA; Duscha, BD; Johnson, JL; Bales, CW; Tanner, CJ; Houmard, JA; Kraus, WE
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