Table of Contents Author Guidelines Submit a Manuscript
Journal of Diabetes Research
Volume 2019, Article ID 2718465, 9 pages
Research Article

Self-Reported Physical Activity and Relations to Growth and Neurotrophic Factors in Diabetes Mellitus: The Framingham Offspring Study

1Department of Endocrinology, Diabetes, Nutrition & Weight Management, Boston University School of Medicine (BUSM), Boston, MA, USA
2Framingham Heart Study, Framingham, MA, USA
3Department of Biostatistics, Boston University School of Public Health (BUSPH), Boston, MA, USA
4Department of Neurology, BUSM, Boston, MA, USA
5Departments of Medicine and Epidemiology, BUSM and BUSPH, Boston, MA, USA
6Glenn Biggs Institute for Alzheimer’s and Neurodegenerative Diseases, University of Texas Health Sciences Center, San Antonio, TX, USA

Correspondence should be addressed to Nicole L. Spartano; ude.ub@onatraps

Received 28 May 2018; Revised 28 November 2018; Accepted 3 December 2018; Published 9 January 2019

Academic Editor: Bernard Portha

Copyright © 2019 Nicole L. Spartano 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.


Aims. Circulating insulin-like growth factor- (IGF-) 1, vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF), and brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) levels are often lower in individuals with diabetes mellitus (DM) and are important for repairing vascular and neuronal dysfunction. The purpose of this investigation was to determine the cross-sectional relations of physical activity to circulating concentrations of IGF-1, VEGF, and BDNF in individuals with and without DM. Methods. In 1730 participants from the Framingham Offspring Study examination cycle 7, including those with DM (, mean age 64 years, 39% women) and without DM (, mean age 60 years, 46% women), we related self-reported physical activity variables to circulating concentrations of IGF-1, VEGF, and BDNF using linear multivariable regression models. We also tested for interactions by age. Participants with prevalent cardiovascular disease, stroke, and dementia or taking hormone replacement therapy were excluded. Results. In participants with DM, more ambulatory physical activity was associated with higher IGF-1 levels ( error , ), and more total physical activity was related to higher BDNF levels (, ), but physical activity was not significantly related to circulating VEGF. In participants without DM, no associations were observed. Moreover, in the examination of interactions by age, the association of ambulatory physical activity with IGF-1 levels was only observed in older adults with DM ( years, , ) but not in middle-aged adults with DM ( years, , ). Conclusion. Our results suggest that more physical activity is associated with higher circulating IGF-1 and BDNF in participants with DM. These results, dissecting interactions by both age and DM status, may also help to explain some of the inconsistent results in studies relating physical activity to growth and neurotrophic factors.