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BioMed Research International
Volume 2017, Article ID 8468469, 14 pages
Research Article

Declining Physical Performance Associates with Serum FasL, miR-21, and miR-146a in Aging Sprinters

1Gerontology Research Center, Department of Health Sciences, University of Jyvaskyla, Jyvaskyla, Finland
2Department of Medical Rehabilitation, Oulu University Hospital, Oulu, Finland
3Center for Life Course Health Research, University of Oulu, Oulu, Finland

Correspondence should be addressed to Reeta Kangas; if.uyj@sagnak.s.m.ateer

Received 22 April 2016; Revised 2 November 2016; Accepted 21 November 2016; Published 3 January 2017

Academic Editor: David C. Hughes

Copyright © 2017 Reeta Kangas et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Aging is associated with systemic inflammation and cellular apoptosis accelerating physiological dysfunctions. Whether physically active way of life affects these associations is unclear. This study measured the levels of serum inflammatory and apoptotic molecules, their change over 10 years, and their associations with physical performance in sprint-trained male athletes. HsCRP, cell counts, HGB, FasL, miR-21, and miR-146a were measured cross-sectionally (, 18–90 yrs) and serum FasL, miR-21, and miR-146a and their aging-related associations with physical performance were assessed over a 10-year follow-up (, 50–90 yrs). The cross-sectional study showed positive age correlations for neutrophils and negative for lymphocytes, red blood cells, HGB, FasL, and miR-146a. During the 10-year follow-up, FasL decreased () and miR-21 () and miR-146a () levels increased. When combining the molecule levels, aging, and physical performance, FasL associated with countermovement jump and bench press (), miR-21 and miR-146a with knee flexion (; ), and bench press (; ) and miR-146a with sprint performance (). The studied serum molecules changed in an age-dependent manner and were associated with declining physical performance. They have potential as biomarkers of aging-related processes influencing the development of physiological dysfunctions. Further research is needed focusing on the origins and targets of circulating microRNAs to clarify their function in various tissues with aging.