• Aneeqa Rashid
  • Umar Ali Khan
  • Muhammad Ayub


Background: On exposure to prolonged cold temperature, the body responds for effective heatproduction both by shivering and non-shivering thermogenesis. Cold exposure increases the productionof reactive oxygen species which influence the sarcoplasmic reticulum Ca++ release from the skeletalmuscles and affect their contractile properties. The role of ascorbic acid supplementation on force ofcontraction during fatigue of cold exposed skeletal muscles was evaluated in this study. Method:Ninety healthy, male Sprague Dawley rats were randomly divided into three groups of control (I), coldexposed (II), and cold exposed with ascorbic acid 500 mg/L supplementation mixed in drinking water(III). Group II and III were given cold exposure by keeping their cages in ice-filled tubs for 1 hr/day forone month. After one month, the extensor digitorum longus muscle was dissected out and force ofcontraction during fatigue in the skeletal muscle fibres was analysed on a computerised data acquisitionsystem. Results: The cold exposed group showed a significant delay in the force of contraction duringfatigue of skeletal muscle fibres compared to control group. Group III showed easy fatigability and abetter force of contraction than the cold exposed group. Conclusions: Ascorbic acid increases the forceof contraction and decreases resistance to fatigue in the muscles exposed to chronic cold.Keywords: Ascorbic acid, cold stress, fatigue, skeletal muscles


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