Journal of Undergraduate Research


muscle cooling, AMPK, protein synthesis, skeletal muscle


Life Sciences


Physiology and Developmental Biology


AMP-activated protein kinase (AMPK) is an intracellular protein that regulates many signaling responses including the mechanistic target of rapamycin (mTOR) pathway, which increases protein synthesis1. Recent research suggests that cold-water immersion of the leg activates AMPK in skeletal muscle. It is not known whether cold directly activates AMPK in skeletal muscle or if the aforementioned results are due to systemic or hormonal responses. Furthermore, the direct effect of cooling on protein synthesis-related signaling in skeletal muscle has not been established. If cooling affects the activation of AMPK, then it could also affect mTOR. Therefore, the purpose of this study was to understand the effect of cooling (COLD) on the AMPK and mTOR pathways and whether these effects are dependent on AMPK. We hypothesized that COLD treatment would increase AMPK activation and decrease the activation of mTOR and its downstream targets. To test this, we used cell culture and in vitro whole muscle incubation models.

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