There is now evidence that a single bout of endurance (aerobic) or resistance exercise reduces 24 h post-exercise subcutaneous glucose profiles to the same extent in insulin-resistant humans with or without type 2 diabetes. However, it remains to be determined which group would benefit most from specific exercise protocols, particularly with regard to long-term glycaemic control. Acute aerobic exercise first accelerates translocation of myocellular glucose transporters via AMP-activated protein kinase, calcium release and mitogen-activated protein kinase, but also improves insulin-dependent glucose transport/phosphorylation via distal components of insulin signalling (phosphoinositide-dependent kinase 1, TBC1 domain family, members 1 and 4, Rac1, protein kinase C). Post-exercise effects involve peroxisome-proliferator activated receptor-γ coactivator 1α and lead to ATP synthesis, which may be modulated by variants in genes such as NDUFB6. While mechanisms of acute resistance-type exercise are less clear, chronic resistance training activates the mammalian target of rapamycin/serine kinase 6 pathway, ultimately increasing protein synthesis and muscle mass. Over the long term, adherence to rather than differences in metabolic variables between specific modes of regular exercise might ultimately determine their efficacy. Taken together, studies are now needed to address the variability of individual responses to long-term resistance and endurance training in real life.
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Increasing evidence indicates that chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) is a complex disease involving more than airflow obstruction. Airflow obstruction has profound effects on cardiac function and gas exchange with systemic consequences. In addition, as COPD results from inflammation and/or alterations in repair mechanisms, the “spill-over” of inflammatory mediators into the circulation may result in important systemic manifestations of the disease, such as skeletal muscle wasting and cachexia. Systemic inflammation may also initiate or worsen comorbid diseases, such as ischaemic heart disease, heart failure, osteoporosis, normocytic anaemia, lung cancer, depression and diabetes. Comorbid diseases potentiate the morbidity of COPD, leading to increased hospitalisations, mortality and healthcare costs. Comorbidities complicate the management of COPD and need to be evaluated carefully. Current therapies for comorbid diseases, such as statins and peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor-agonists, may provide unexpected benefits for COPD patients. Treatment of COPD inflammation may concomitantly treat systemic inflammation and associated comorbidities. However, new broad-spectrum anti-inflammatory treatments, such as phosphodiesterase 4 inhibitors, have significant side-effects so it may be necessary to develop inhaled drugs in the future. Another approach is the reversal of corticosteroid resistance, for example with effective antioxidants. More research is needed on COPD comorbidities and their treatment.
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