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Skeletal muscle contraction stimulates capillary recruitment and glucose uptake in insulin resistant obese Zucker rats

journal contribution
posted on 2023-05-16, 15:28 authored by Wheatley, CM, Stephen RattiganStephen Rattigan, Stephen RichardsStephen Richards, Barrett, EJ, Michael ClarkMichael Clark
Exercise and insulin increase muscle glucose uptake by different mechanisms and also increase capillary recruitment, which is proposed to facilitate access for hormones and nutrients. The genetically obese Zucker rat shows impaired insulin- but not contraction-mediated glucose uptake in muscle. Recently, we have shown the genetically obese Zucker rats to have impaired insulin-mediated capillary recruitment and proposed that this contributes to the insulin resistance of muscle in vivo. Because this might imply a general loss of recruitable capillaries, we now assess responses to contraction in muscles of 18 ± 3-wk-old lean and obese Zucker rats in vivo. Field stimulation (2 Hz, 0.1 ms) was conducted for 1 h on one leg of anesthetized instrumented rats, and measurements were made of femoral blood flow (FBF), heart rate (HR), blood pressure (BP), hindleg metabolism of 1-methylxanthine (a measure of capillary recruitment), hindleg glucose uptake (HGU), and lower leg muscle glucose uptake by 2-deoxyglucose (R′g). Lean animals (311 ± 9 g) developed tension at 219 ± 27 g/g muscle with no change in BP but with significant increases in HR, FBF, HGU, 1-MX metabolism, and R′g (P < 0.05). compared with nonstimulated control leans. Obese animals (469 ± 7 g) developed tension at 265 ± 31 g/g muscle with no change in HR or BP but with significant increases in FBF, HGU, 1-MX metabolism, and R′g (P < 0.05) compared with nonstimulated control obese rats. Muscle contraction of lean animals led to a greater increase in lower leg R′g, similar responses in HGU and 1-MX, and a smaller increase in FBF than in obese animals. A tight correlation between FBF and capillary recruitment was noted for all data (P < 0.001). It is concluded that contraction-mediated muscle capillary recruitment and glucose uptake are essentially normal in the obese Zucker rat and that control of FBF and capillary recruitment in exercise is closely linked.


Publication title

American Journal of Physiology - Endocrinology and Metabolism










Tasmanian School of Medicine


American Physiological Society

Place of publication

Bethesda, USA

Repository Status

  • Restricted

Socio-economic Objectives

Clinical health not elsewhere classified

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