Running 30 min a day helps your brain

This article is written by Edward Alain Pajarillo, MSc, Ph.D. Research Associate @ Florida A&M University. 

This is my first summary of an article on the topic of neurodegenerative disorders and treatment, in order to expand my knowledge as I pursue a very exciting science and share it with others in a concise way.

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Photo from Standford Medicine

Parkinson disease (PD) is a serious neurodegenerative disorder associated with the loss of dopaminergic neurons. Though the question of “what causes PD?” is still controversial, the indicators remain to be uniform in almost all cases, particularly damage and death of dopaminergic neurons, which are important for motor function and reward systems.

In an experiment published earlier this year, Shin and colleagues investigated the effects of (treadmill) running against PD-induced disorder. Briefly, PD was induced by injecting rotenone into rats once a day for 14 consecutive days, while treadmill exercise was performed 30 min once during the same period.

Several tests were conducted to measure balance and coordination. Followed by biomarker analysis of dopaminergic neuron. Results of the study showed that treadmill exercise improved motor performance, alleviate the loss of dopaminergic neurons and suppressed the expression of PD marker, α-synuclein.

The importance of exercise for improving motor function by inducing dopaminergic neuron repair or regeneration and suppression of Lewy bodies in PD patients is promising. Additional studies are necessary to determine the exact mechanism on how exercise contribute to the dual mechanism of neuroregeneration and PD suppression.

This article is published by Shin et al., 2017 in the Journal of Exercise Rehabilitation entitled “Treadmill exercise alleviates nigrostriatal dopaminergic loss of neurons and fibers in rotenone-induced Parkinson rats”. (https;//doi.org/10.12965/jer.1734906.453)

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