Recent studies have reported that obese young people with Down syndrome suffer from low-grade systemic inflammation. Whereas this condition may be improved in the general population by regular exercise, the problem has received no attention in the case of people with intellectual disability. Therefore, the authors’ aim was to assess the influence of aerobic training on plasma adipokines in obese women with Down syndrome. Twenty obese young women with Down syndrome volunteered for this study, 11 of whom were randomly assigned to a 10-wk aerobic-training program. They attended 3 sessions/wk, which consisted of warm-up exercises followed by the main activity on a treadmill (30–40 min) at a work intensity of 55–65% of peak heart rate and ended with a cooling-down period. The control group included 9 women with Down syndrome matched for age, sex, and body-mass index. Fat-mass percentage and distribution were measured, and plasma adipokine levels (leptin and adiponectin) were assessed. In addition, each participant performed a maximal graded continuous treadmill exercise test. These parameters were assessed pre- and postintervention. Aerobic training produced a significant increase in participants’ maximal oxygen uptake (20.2 ± 5.8 vs.23.7 ± 6.3 ml · kg−1 · min−1; p < .001), and plasma leptin levels were significantly reduced in the intervention group (54.2 ± 6.7 vs.45.7 ± 6.1 ng/ml; p = .026). Further significant correlations between plasma leptin and indices of obesity were found. In contrast, no significant changes were found in adiponectin levels (p > .05). None of the tested parameters changed in the control group. In conclusion, a 10-week training program reduced leptin levels in obese young women with Down syndrome.
Ordonez, Fornieles-Gonzalez, Rosety, Rosety, Diaz, and Rosety-Rodriguez are with the School of Sports Medicine, University of Cadiz, Cadiz, Spain. Camacho is with the Div. of Internal Medicine, Hospital Juan Ramon Jimenez, Huelva, Spain.