Circulating mesenchymal cells (cMCs) have the potential for regenerating damaged tissue, e.g., ischemic myocardium. In patients (age range: 53-76 yrs) with stable coronary artery disease we determined cMCs before and after dynamic exercise of moderate (< respiratory compensation threshold (RCT)) (n=9 patients) or high intensity (> RCT) (n=11). Only high-intensity exercise (i.e., provoking signs of myocardial ischemia in 3 patients and ventricular extrasystoles in another) induced a significant increase in cMCs (P = 0.009). Our results support the hypothesis that intense exercise (near or at the point of myocardial ischemia) is a potent stimulus for MCs mobilisation.
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