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Enzyme Activity in the Body During Exercise

By Jae Allen

Enzymes can assist many functions in the human body, including repairing or healing of tissues, provision of cellular energy, nutrient digestion and support of brain functions. When you exercise, enzyme levels and activity may change in response to your body's changing energy, digestion or healing needs. Exercise causes elevation in certain enzyme levels, on both a temporary and long-term basis. This has the potential to confuse medical diagnosis.

Atypical Protein Kinase C (aPKC)

Atypical protein kinase C (aPKC) is an enzyme which plays a part in governing the function of other proteins in your body. Exercise increases the activity of aPKC in your skeletal muscles. A study by researchers from the Copenhagen Muscle Research Center, reported in the November 2004 issue of the "Journal of Physiology," indicates that enzyme activity of aPKC is not directly related to the intensity of exercise undertaken.

Creatine Phosphokinase (CPK)

Creatine phosphokinase (CPK) is also known as phospho-creatine kinase. This enzyme can be produced by several different types of cells and tissues in your body, functioning as a catalyst in converting creatinine. Exercise typically increases the levels of CPK in your blood immediately during and after exercise occurs. A study reported in the journal "Medicine and Science in Sports" indicates that an increase in the intensity of exercise does not typically cause any further increase in CPK levels.

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Adenylate Kinase (AK)

Adenylate Kinase (AK) is an enzyme which functions to control the energy transfer and balance in human cells. Like CPK, AK levels are typically higher after exercise than before exercise. The more trained an athlete, the higher her pre-exercise AK levels will be in comparison to an untrained athlete. Since enzyme levels may be used in medical diagnoses, it is important for exercise levels and an individual's athleticism to be drawn from enzyme level results.

Lactate Dehydrogenase (LDH)

Lactate Dehydrogenase (LDH) is an enzyme which demonstrates elevated levels when body tissue breaks down. LDH is present in plant lifeforms as well as animals and humans. Exercise can increase LDH levels in your blood, although an increase in the level of exercise stress on your body does not cause any additional increase in LDH levels. Elevated LDH levels without exercise may indicate the presence of HIV, cancer, meningitis or encephalitis.

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