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Volume 31, Nº 6, November and December 2018


DOI: http://www.dx.doi.org/10.5935/2359-4802.20180058


Comparison betweent the Effects of Swimming and Treadmill-Based Aerobic Training Protocols in Diabetic Rats

Elizabeth de Orleans Carvalho de Moura

Kelvin Tanaka

Moisés Felipe Pereira Gomes

Evandro Nogueira

Ricardo Gomes

Debora Estadella

Katt Mattos

Patrícia Chakur Brum

Alessandra Medeiros


Background: Type 1 diabetes mellitus (DM1) can cause damage to several physiological systems.

Objectives: To compare and characterize the effects of aerobic exercise training (ET) performed by swimming with those of ET performed on a treadmill on the skeletal muscle and heart of rats with DM1.

Methods: 41 male Wistar rats were randomized into four groups: nondiabetic control (CTR), diabetic control (DMC), diabetic trained on the treadmill (DMT), and diabetic trained by swimming (DMS). The trained groups performed aerobic exercise training for 8 weeks, 5 times a week, 60 min per day. Exercise tolerance, blood glucose, body weight, wet weight of the skeletal muscles and left ventricle (LV), muscle glycogen, cross-sectional area of skeletal muscles, and cross-sectional diameter and collagen volume fraction of the LV were evaluated.

Results: The results were expressed as mean ± standard deviation of the mean and submitted to two-way ANOVA with post-hoc Bonferroni test. Aerobic ET protocols applied to animals with DM1, regardless of the ergometer, showed satisfactory results (p < 0.05) when compared to the control groups: improved exercise tolerance, increased glycogen content of the soleus and extensor digitorum longus (EDL) muscles and increased cross-sectional diameter of the left ventricular cardiomyocytes. In some variables, such as exercise tolerance and cross-sectional area of the soleus and EDL muscles, DMT showed better results than DMS (p < 0.05). On the other hand, DMS showed increased cross-sectional diameter of cardiomyocytes when compared with the DMT group.

Conclusion: Both aerobic ET protocols offered benefits to animals with diabetes; however, due to the specific characteristics of each modality, different physiological adaptations were observed between the trained groups. (Int J Cardiovasc Sci. 2018;31(6)610-618)

Keywords: Exercise; Physical Exertion; Rats, Wistar; Diabetes Mellitus; Exercise Test; Muscle, Skeletal.