Exercise training modulates the nitric oxide synthase profile in skeletal muscle from old rats.
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The effects of exercise training on the nitric oxide synthase (NOS) isoform profile in aging fast-twitch (white gastrocnemius [WG]) and slow-twitch (soleus [SOL]) muscle have not been investigated. Six-month and 27-month male Fischer-344 rats were divided into the following groups: young sedentary (YS), young treadmill exercise trained for 12 weeks, old sedentary (OS), and old exercise trained (OE). Inducible NOS (iNOS) protein expression and activity were significantly higher in OS compared with YS, whereas exercise training significantly reduced iNOS protein and activity levels in the WG. Neuronal NOS protein expression decreased with aging in WG but was upregulated significantly with exercise training in OE for both WG and SOL. Endothelial NOS (eNOS) protein levels were depressed in WG of old rats but were higher in OE than in OS. eNOS was unaffected by aging or exercise in the SOL. Our results indicate that endurance exercise training attenuates age-induced alterations of NOS isoforms with a greater response in fast-twitch compared with slow-twitch muscle.