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beta-Alanine supplementation reduces acidosis but not oxygen uptake response during high-intensity cycling exercise

Audrey Baguet (UGent) , Katrien Koppo (UGent) , Andries Pottier and Wim Derave (UGent)
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Abstract
The oral ingestion of beta-alanine, the rate-limiting precursor in carnosine synthesis, has been shown to elevate the muscle carnosine content. Carnosine is thought to act as a physiologically relevant pH buffer during exercise but direct evidence is lacking. Acidosis has been hypothesised to influence oxygen uptake kinetics during high-intensity exercise. The present study aimed to investigate whether oral beta-alanine supplementation could reduce acidosis during high-intensity cycling and thereby affect oxygen uptake kinetics. 14 male physical education students participated in this placebo-controlled, double-blind study. Subjects were supplemented orally for 4 weeks with 4.8 g/day placebo or beta-alanine. Before and after supplementation, subjects performed a 6-min cycling exercise bout at an intensity of 50% of the difference between ventilatory threshold (VT) and (V) over dotO(2peak). Capillary blood samples were taken for determination of pH, lactate, bicarbonate and base excess, and pulmonary oxygen uptake kinetics were determined with a bi-exponential model fitted to the averaged breath-by-breath data of three repetitions. Exercise-induced acidosis was significantly reduced following beta-alanine supplementation compared to placebo, without affecting blood lactate and bicarbonate concentrations. The time delay of the fast component (Td(1)) of the oxygen uptake kinetics was significantly reduced following beta-alanine supplementation compared to placebo, although this did not reduce oxygen deficit. The parameters of the slow component did not differ between groups. These results indicate that chronic beta-alanine supplementation, which presumably increased muscle carnosine content, can attenuate the fall in blood pH during high-intensity exercise. This may contribute to the ergogenic effect of the supplement found in some exercise modes.
Keywords
(V) over dotO(2) kinetics, Acidosis, High-intensity cycling, HUMANS, PERFORMANCE, Ergogenic supplements, CARNOSINE CONTENT, HUMAN VASTUS LATERALIS, SODIUM-BICARBONATE INGESTION, SLOW COMPONENT, VO2 KINETICS, SKELETAL-MUSCLE, BUFFERING CAPACITY, THOROUGHBRED HORSE

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Chicago
Baguet, Audrey, Katrien Koppo, Andries Pottier, and Wim Derave. 2010. “beta-Alanine Supplementation Reduces Acidosis but Not Oxygen Uptake Response During High-intensity Cycling Exercise.” European Journal of Applied Physiology 108 (3): 495–503.
APA
Baguet, A., Koppo, K., Pottier, A., & Derave, W. (2010). beta-Alanine supplementation reduces acidosis but not oxygen uptake response during high-intensity cycling exercise. EUROPEAN JOURNAL OF APPLIED PHYSIOLOGY, 108(3), 495–503.
Vancouver
1.
Baguet A, Koppo K, Pottier A, Derave W. beta-Alanine supplementation reduces acidosis but not oxygen uptake response during high-intensity cycling exercise. EUROPEAN JOURNAL OF APPLIED PHYSIOLOGY. NEW YORK: Springer; 2010;108(3):495–503.
MLA
Baguet, Audrey, Katrien Koppo, Andries Pottier, et al. “beta-Alanine Supplementation Reduces Acidosis but Not Oxygen Uptake Response During High-intensity Cycling Exercise.” EUROPEAN JOURNAL OF APPLIED PHYSIOLOGY 108.3 (2010): 495–503. Print.
@article{858201,
  abstract     = {The oral ingestion of beta-alanine, the rate-limiting precursor in carnosine synthesis, has been shown to elevate the muscle carnosine content. Carnosine is thought to act as a physiologically relevant pH buffer during exercise but direct evidence is lacking. Acidosis has been hypothesised to influence oxygen uptake kinetics during high-intensity exercise. The present study aimed to investigate whether oral beta-alanine supplementation could reduce acidosis during high-intensity cycling and thereby affect oxygen uptake kinetics. 14 male physical education students participated in this placebo-controlled, double-blind study. Subjects were supplemented orally for 4 weeks with 4.8 g/day placebo or beta-alanine. Before and after supplementation, subjects performed a 6-min cycling exercise bout at an intensity of 50\% of the difference between ventilatory threshold (VT) and (V) over dotO(2peak). Capillary blood samples were taken for determination of pH, lactate, bicarbonate and base excess, and pulmonary oxygen uptake kinetics were determined with a bi-exponential model fitted to the averaged breath-by-breath data of three repetitions. Exercise-induced acidosis was significantly reduced following beta-alanine supplementation compared to placebo, without affecting blood lactate and bicarbonate concentrations. The time delay of the fast component (Td(1)) of the oxygen uptake kinetics was significantly reduced following beta-alanine supplementation compared to placebo, although this did not reduce oxygen deficit. The parameters of the slow component did not differ between groups. These results indicate that chronic beta-alanine supplementation, which presumably increased muscle carnosine content, can attenuate the fall in blood pH during high-intensity exercise. This may contribute to the ergogenic effect of the supplement found in some exercise modes.},
  author       = {Baguet, Audrey and Koppo, Katrien and Pottier, Andries and Derave, Wim},
  issn         = {1439-6319},
  journal      = {EUROPEAN JOURNAL OF APPLIED PHYSIOLOGY},
  keyword      = {(V) over dotO(2) kinetics,Acidosis,High-intensity cycling,HUMANS,PERFORMANCE,Ergogenic supplements,CARNOSINE CONTENT,HUMAN VASTUS LATERALIS,SODIUM-BICARBONATE INGESTION,SLOW COMPONENT,VO2 KINETICS,SKELETAL-MUSCLE,BUFFERING CAPACITY,THOROUGHBRED HORSE},
  language     = {eng},
  number       = {3},
  pages        = {495--503},
  publisher    = {Springer},
  title        = {beta-Alanine supplementation reduces acidosis but not oxygen uptake response during high-intensity cycling exercise},
  url          = {http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s00421-009-1225-0},
  volume       = {108},
  year         = {2010},
}

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