ACTIBATE: Activating Brown Adipose Tissue through Exercise.

Activating brown adipose tissue through exercise in young adults: A Randomized controlled trial


The energy expenditure capacity of brown adipose tissue (BAT) makes it an attractive target as a therapy against obesity and type 2 diabetes. BAT activators namely catecholamines, natriuretic peptides and certain myokines, are secreted in response to exercise.
ACTIBATE will determine the effect of exercise on BAT activity and mass measured by positron emission tomography/computed tomography (PET/CT, primary outcome) in young adults. ACTIBATE will also investigate the physiological consequences of activating BAT (secondary outcomes).
ACTIBATE will recruit 150 sedentary, healthy, young adults (50% women) aged 18–25 years. Eligible participants will be randomly assigned to a non-exercise group (n≈50) or one of two exercise groups (n=50 each). Participants in the exercise groups will perform aerobic and strength training 3–4 days/week at a heart rate equivalent to 60% of heart rate reserve (HRres), and at 50% of 1 repetition maximum (RM) for the moderate-intensity group, and at 80% of HRres and 70%RMfor the vigorous-intensity group. Laboratory measures completed at baseline and 6 months include BAT activity and mass, resting energy expenditure, meal and cold-induced thermogenesis, body temperature regulation and shivering threshold, body composition and cardiovascular disease risk factors. We will also obtain biopsies from abdominal subcutaneous white adipose tissue and skeletal muscle to analyse the expression of genes encoding proteins involved in the thermogenic machinery. ID:NCT02365129


Exercise intervention and data collection on-going.


The study is supported by the Spanish Ministry of Economy and Competitiveness, Fondo de Investigación Sanitaria del Instituto de Salud Carlos III (PI13/01393), Fondos Europeo de Desarrollo Regional (FEDER), by the Spanish Ministry of Science and Innovation (RYC-2010-05957, RYC-2011-09011), by the Spanish Ministry of Education (FPU 13/04365, FPU15/04059, y Beca de Colaboración Ref. 11727189), by the University of Granada (Beca de Iniciación a la Investigación), by the Fundación Iberoamericana de Nutrición (FINUT), by the Redestemáticas de investigación cooperativa RETIC (Red SAMID RD12/0026/0015), by AstraZeneca HealthCare Foundation, and by Vegenat®.


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  • 2) Sanchez-Delgado G, Martinez-Tellez B, Olza J, Aguilera CM, Labayen I, Ortega FB, Chillon P, Fernandez-Reguera C, Alcantara JM, Martinez-Avila WD, Muñoz-Hernandez V, Acosta FM, Prados-Ruiz J, Amaro-Gahete FJ, Hidalgo-Garcia L, Rodriguez L, Ruiz YA, Ramirez-Navarro A, Muros-de Fuentes MA, García-Rivero Y, Sanchez-Sanchez R, de Dios Beas Jimenez J, de Teresa C, Navarrete S, Lozano R, Brea-Gomez E, Rubio-Lopez J, Ruiz MR, Cano-Nieto A, Llamas-Elvira JM, Jimenez Rios JA, Gil A, Ruiz JR. Activating brown adipose tissue through exercise (ACTIBATE) in young adults: Rationale, design and methodology. Contemp Clin Trials. 2015 Nov;45(Pt B):416-25. [PubMed]
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