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Amino Acids Help Maintaining Muscle Tonus
December 22, 2009 17:37

Russian medical experts suggest a technique for compensation nitrogen losses in muscles, which were not active for some time due to various reasons. Medics claim that taking a mixture of several amino acids – leucine, isoleucine, methionine and arginine – can prevent patient’s muscles from degradation.

When skeletal muscles do not get enough load, they show a very unhealthy tendency to lose nitrogen and nitrogenous compounds. This problem is often detected in many patients of traumatology departments, who don’t get enough physical exercise. Researchers from Federal Agency of High-Technology Medical Care know how to help these people – they conducted a research on laboratory mice, which showed that a mixture of four amino acids (leucine, isoleucine, methionine and arginine) can compensate losses of this very important element from muscles.

Muscle proteins are not the only pool of nitrogen in an organism – this essential chemical element can also be found in non-protein compounds, creatine and its derivative called creatine phosphate are a good example. Creatine is a high-energy chemical compound, which is aimed at supplying energy to muscles, and that is why lack of creatine and creatine phosphate makes patients very weak. Russian researchers see the solution for muscle nitrogen loss compensation in amino acid diet. Efficiency of a suggested technique was tested in experiments with laboratory animals – male mice were hung on their tails in order to remove loads from their hind legs and skeletal muscles.



For this experiment mice were divided into three groups. First one ate meals, common for vivarium dwellers. Second group fed on low-calorie diet with lack of protein, and the third group received a mixture of four mentioned amino acids in addition to low-calorie diet. In third case, amino acids contained the same amount of protein nitrogen as standard meal. On the third, seventh and twenty eighth days, researchers measured concentration of creatine and creatine phosphate in skeletal muscles of mice’s hind legs.

What were the results of the brilliant experiment? Mice, which ate as usual, showed drop of creatine concentration on the seventh day, and creatine phosphate content was significantly low on the twenty eighth day. Lack of proteins in diet led to faster loss of creatine phosphate, but creatine concentration appeared to increase. When lack of proteins was compensated by amino acid mixture, tested animals showed significant increase of creatine concentration in muscle tissue during the whole observation period. As for creatine phosphate, its concentration reached the highest values on the twenty eighth day. Researchers think that leucine and isoleucine quench protein breakdown and stimulate protein synthesis. As for methionine and arginine, these two amino acids serve as substrates for creatine synthesis. All mentioned experimental works allowed researchers to suggest that mixture of four abovementioned amino acids stops losses of creatine and creatine phosphate in skeletal muscles during lack of physical exercise. This means that patients, who have to spend a lot of time motionless, won’t lose their muscle tonus.

Source: Science & Technologies

Kizilova Anna

Tags: Russian medicine     

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