Paper of the Month - May 2015

Thomas MM, Trajcevski KE, Coleman SK, Jiang M, Di Michele J, O'Neill HM, Lally JS, Steinberg GR, Hawke TJ. Early oxidative shifts in mouse skeletal muscle morphology with high-fat diet consumption do not lead to functional improvements. Physiol Rep. 2014 Sep 17;2(9).

­­The incidence of type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM) in the youth/adolescent population used to be virtually non existent but with the increased consumption of higher fat diets and sedentary lifestyle there has been a rise in the presence of T2DM in the young population. Animal research is typically conducted on adult mice whose skeletal muscle growth has ceased. During growth and development mice experience significant increases in muscle fibre size and changes to fibre type and thus, may be more susceptible to changes in diet composition than adult mice. With the consumption of a high fat diet (HFD) adult mice experience a shift towards a more oxidative muscle profile and here we show that this also occurs in young growing mice after 3 weeks of a HFD. Despite the morphological changes from the HFD that were observed in the young mice which could be expected to increase endurance performance and fatigue resistance there were no benefits seen in these functional parameters. This study highlights the importance of looking at both morphological changes in muscle and functional outcomes as they do not always translate.

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