Published on Fri Sep 10 2021

Weight Pulling: A Novel Mouse Model of Human Progressive Resistance Exercise

Zhu, W. G., Hibbert, J. E., Lin, K. H., Steinert, N. D., Lemens, J. L., Jorgenson, K. W., Newman, S. M., Lamming, D. W., Hornberger, T. A.

This study describes a mouse model of human progressive resistance exercise. It utilizes a full-body/multi-joint exercise (weight pulling) and a training protocol that mimics a traditional human paradigm. We demonstrate that weight pulling can induce an increase in the mass of numerous muscles throughout the body.

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Abstract

This study describes a mouse model of human progressive resistance exercise that utilizes a full-body/multi-joint exercise (weight pulling) along with a training protocol that mimics a traditional human paradigm (3 training sessions per week, ~8-12 repetitions per set, 2 minutes of rest between sets, ~2 maximal-intensity sets per session, last set taken to failure, and a progressive increase in loading that is based on the individual's performance). We demonstrate that weight pulling can induce an increase in the mass of numerous muscles throughout the body. The magnitude of increase in muscle mass is similar to what has been observed in human studies, and it is associated with the same type of long-term adaptations that occur in humans (e.g., fiber hypertrophy, myonuclear accretion, and in some instances a fast-to-slow transition in Type II fiber composition). Moreover, we demonstrate that weight pulling can induce the same type of acute responses that are thought to drive these long-term adaptations (e.g., the activation of signaling through mTORC1 and the induction of protein synthesis at 1 hr post-exercise). Collectively, the results of this study indicate that weight pulling can serve as a highly translatable mouse model of human progressive resistance exercise.