According to the publication, what extent regular exercises alters the adaptation of the liver to increased energy intake.
In the study, mice were fed a high-energy diet. Some of the mice also received regular treadmill training.
Following the six-week intervention, the researchers examined the animals’ liver and muscles for changes in the transcriptome, mitochondrial proteome, lipid composition, and the mitochondrial function.
The results showed that training regulated important enzymes of glucose and fructose degradation in the livers as well as the mitochondrial pyruvate metabolism.
In this way, the substrate burden for mitochondrial respiration and lipid synthesis can be reduced.
As a consequence, less fat is stored in the liver — and specific lipids such as diacylglycerol species are lowered. Moreover, glucose control improves in the exercise trained mice. In addition, an increased respiratory capacity of the skeletal muscles relieves the metabolic stress in the liver.
Worldwide one in four persons suffers from non-alcoholic liver disease (NAFLD, also called metabolic liver disease MAFLD). Those affected often have type 2 diabetes as well as an increased risk of liver cirrhosis and cardiovascular diseases.
An imbalance between energy intake and consumption is discussed as a cause for the disease. This leads to fat deposits in the liver and over time impairs the function of the mitochondria — both risk factors for the development of hepatic insulin resistance and liver inflammation.