A closer look at the role of BDNF as a causal link in the physical activity cognition relationship: a dose-response study

UNCG Author/Contributor (non-UNCG co-authors, if there are any, appear on document)
Aaron T. Piepmeier (Creator)
The University of North Carolina at Greensboro (UNCG )
Web Site: http://library.uncg.edu/
Jennifer Etnier

Abstract: There is strong evidence in support of a beneficial relationship between acute physical activity (PA) and cognitive performance. However, the biological mechanisms through which this relationship operates are currently unknown. Although findings from both rodent and human research suggest brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF), a protein vital to the form and function of the brain, as a potential mechanism, results from studies exploring the acute PA-BDNF-cognitive performance relationship have been mixed. The focus of the present study was to elucidate this relationship by assessing cognitive performance (i.e., memory) and acute PA-induced changes in BDNF concentrations. An experimental design utilizing a randomized control trial was used to allow for inferences of causality within the acute PA-BDNF-cognitive performance relationship. Results showed that acute light intensity PA significantly improved memory performance compared to acute vigorous intensity PA or a control (non-PA) condition. Additionally, acute PA was shown to have a non-significant effect on BDNF concentrations. Findings from this research do not support BDNF as a biological mechanism for the acute PA-cognitive performance relationship.

Additional Information

Language: English
Date: 2015
Isoform, mBDNF, Mechanism, Memory, proBDNF
Exercise $x Psychological aspects
Cognition $x Effect of exercise on

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