Influence of skeletal muscle carnosine content on fatigue during repeated resistance exercise in recreationally active women

Alyssa N. Varanoske, Jay R. Hoffman, David D. Church, Ran Wang, Kayla M. Baker, Sarah J. Dodd, Nicholas A. Coker, Leonardo P. Oliveira, Virgil L. Dawson, David H. Fukuda, Jeffrey R. Stout

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

21 Scopus citations


Carnosine is a naturally occurring intramuscular dipeptide that is thought to attenuate fatigue during high-intensity exercise. Carnosine content is influenced by various factors, including gender and diet. Despite research reporting that carnosine content is lower in women compared to men and lower in vegetarians compared to omnivores, no investigations have examined carnosine content in women based on dietary protein intake and its effect on muscle fatigue. Twenty recreationally active women were assigned to either a high (HI; n = 5), moderate (MOD; n = 10), or low (LO; n = 5) group based upon intramuscular carnosine content of the vastus lateralis. Each participant underwent two unilateral maximal voluntary isometric contractions (MVIC) of the knee extensors separated by an isokinetic exercise protocol consisting of five sets of 50 repeated maximal unilateral contractions. Magnitude-based inferences were used to analyze group differences. Percent decline in rate of force development and peak torque (PT) during the MVICs and changes in PT and mean torque during the muscle-fatiguing protocol were lower in HI compared to both MOD and LO. Additionally, absolute and relative dietary protein intake were greater in HI compared to MOD or LO. Results indicated that greater intramuscular carnosine content was reflective of greater dietary protein intake and that individuals with higher carnosine content displayed a greater attenuation of fatigue compared to those with lower carnosine.

Original languageEnglish
Article number988
Pages (from-to)1-14
Number of pages14
Issue number9
StatePublished - Sep 2017
Externally publishedYes


  • Dietary protein intake
  • Fatigue
  • Histidine dipeptides
  • Intracellular buffering capacity
  • Muscular acidosis


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