Ageing, inflammation and cardiovascular function

McNulty, Clare (2016). Ageing, inflammation and cardiovascular function. University of Birmingham. Ph.D.

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Age is associated with the development of multi-system function loss including the musculoskeletal, immune and cardiovascular system, as well as body composition changes. These age-related alterations lead to frailty development and disease progression, reducing quality of life. A major lifestyle change occurring in later years is reduced physical activity levels. This thesis sought to examine the associations between physical activity and multi-system function loss in a cohort of elderly individuals, and to better understand the neural mechanisms underpinning the circulatory responses to exercise. It was observed that high daily physical activity levels attenuate some but not all of the age-related changes in elderly individuals. High physical activity was associated with superior physical functioning, lower total body fat and visceral adiposity, and plasma plasminogen activator inhibitor 1 (PAI-1) concentrations. Left ventricular (LV) diastolic function was negatively associated with mean arterial pressure (MAP) and visceral adiposity, suggesting that elderly individuals with higher MAP and visceral adiposity may have inferior LV diastolic function. In terms of neural mechanisms related to circulatory responses to exercise, in models of metaboreflex over-activity whereby BP is elevated as observed in heart failure patients, left atrial systolic function is enhanced in order to maintain end-diastolic volume and SV.

Type of Work: Thesis (Doctorates > Ph.D.)
Award Type: Doctorates > Ph.D.
College/Faculty: Colleges (2008 onwards) > College of Life & Environmental Sciences
School or Department: School of Sport, Exercise and Rehabilitation Sciences
Funders: None/not applicable
Subjects: Q Science > QP Physiology
R Medicine > RC Internal medicine


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