The utility of resistance exercise training and amino acid supplementation for reversing age-associated decrements in muscle protein mass and function
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Advancing age is associated with reduced skeletal muscle protein synthesis, altered expression of and chemical modifications to muscle proteins, reduced muscle strength, muscle strength per unit muscle mass and muscle power (sarcopenia). These age-associated impairments in the quantity and quality of contractile protein contribute to physical disability and frailty, a loss of independent function, the risk of falling and fractures, and escalating health-care costs. Progressive resistance exercise training is a potent, non-pharmacologic, efficacious therapy for the impairment in muscle quantity and quality in middle age and physically frail adults. Evidence is accumulating that dietary amino acid supplementation may also improve muscle protein balance in the elderly. Several potential cellular mechanisms for the loss of muscle protein and resistance exercise-induced improvements in muscle quantity and quality in elderly adults are reviewed.
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