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Vol 20, No 1 (2023)
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Published online: 2023-03-23
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The role of physical activity in stimulation of the neurotrophic factors’ secretion and the significance of the secretory function of skeletal muscles

Celestyna Grzywniak1, Ewa Wilczek-Rużyczka1
Psychiatria 2023;20(1):48-53.


The article aims at drawing attention to the possibility of utilizing physical activity in treatment of neurodegenerative illnesses such as Parkinson’s disease, Alzheimer’s disease, multiple sclerosis, dementia and mental disorders, particularly depression and schizophrenia. On the basis of an analysis of the results of research on the effects of physical activity on secretion of neurotrophins, the authors present the role of physical exercises in increasing their levels of neurotrophins as well as in stimulation of cognitive processes and using them in treatment of neurodegenerative and mental illnesses. The research indicates that physical activity, appropriately dosed in case of various illnesses may be effective, sometimes to a degree similar to pharmaceuticals and in some cases even more effective. The authors point out the types of exercises utilized in treatment of neurodegenerative and mental illnesses as well as the possibility of adjusting them to the psychophysical capabilities of the ones exercising. Next, the authors briefly characterize neurotrophins most commonly present in the human body and their role in stabilizing and treating neurodegenerative and mental illnesses and also present secretory functions of muscles during their activity. The concluding part of the article presents factors that stimulate secretion of neurotrophins including the BDNF as well as the types of physical exercises that can be utilized in rehabilitation of adults.
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