Understanding the Power of Peptides
August 24, 2022
If you aren’t familiar, peptides are short strings of amino acids produced by your body linked via peptide bonds. Amino acids are the building blocks of proteins, but a peptide doesn’t have as many amino acids as a protein does. When organized in complex structures (typically consisting of 50 or more amino acids), peptides then become proteins.
We have utilized peptides at PUR-FORM for a number of years because they have so many functions, namely, they engage with various receptors throughout the body, promoting the release of hormones and other messaging compounds that may influence your health, body composition, exercise performance and recovery.
The body produces a wide range of peptide hormones that circulate in the blood and bind to receptors on targeted organs and tissues. In fact, our patches contain a variety of peptides and peptide hormones. These are mixed with penetrating molecules to enable the peptides to reach a particular joint.
We have recently decided to incorporate additional peptides into our practice because they can also stimulate the growth and health of our mitochondria and at the same time increase the length of our telomeres. Many peptides have to be taken by injection, while others can be administered orally. Our patches are a transdermal option, but often a combination of peptide delivery mechanisms will be used.
Revolutionary New Peptides We’re Using
BPC-157 is a partial form of the protein known as body protection compound (BPC). BPC 157 is a synthetically produced peptide based off of the naturally occurring body protection compound (BPC) protein that was isolated from human gastric contents. This short peptide has been shown to have both anti-inflammatory and wound healing effect.
The good news is that BPC is not just active in intestinal repair and healing, but appears to produce similar effects in a number of tissues. Scientific studies based on animal test subjects has shown that its healing actions are at least partially linked to growth hormone (GH) which is found in the velvet deer antler product that our patients get.
Peptides for Wound Healing
BPC-157 significantly accelerates reticulin and collagen formation as well as angiogenesis (the formation of new blood vessels) together with stimulation of macrophages and fibroblasts infiltration, representing a potential therapeutic tool in wound healing management.
We must realize that in regenerative medicine most entities, be it osteoarthritis, tendon injuries, or other soft tissue injuries, are considered “wounds”. To that end, BPC-157 plays a significant role in fibroblast recruitment. Fibroblasts are the major cells responsible for the production of collagen, glycosaminoglycans, and proteoglycans. These compounds are considered the primary source of extracellular matrix (ECM) proteins, which, in addition to providing a scaffold for cells, play key roles in determining cell type and function. At present we will use an oral version of BPC-157. An oral route is not a problem since in a natural state BPC-157 is found in gastric juice.
14 Potential Benefits of BPC-157
- Accelerated wound healing (muscle, ligament, tendon, nerve)
- Has been shown to decrease pain in damaged areas
- BPC-157 increases growth hormone receptors
- Promotes the outgrowth of tendon fibroblasts, cell survival under stress, and the migration of tendon fibroblasts
- Improves digestive function
- May improve blood pressure and NO production
- Protects and heals inflamed intestinal epithelium (leaky gut)
- Has also been shown to help in inflammatory bowel disease
- Protects liver from toxic insults (alcohol, antibiotics, etc) and promotes healing
Advanced Benefits of BPC-157 include:
- In tendons, BPC-157 increases fibroblast growth via phosphorylation levels of both FAK and paxillin (dose dependently)
- In collagen repair, BPC-157 stimulates EGR-1 which induces cytokine and growth factor generation and early extracellular matrix (collagen) formation
- EGR-1 also increases its co-repressors such as nerve growth factor 1-A binding protein-2 (NAB2)
- BPC-157 can increase B4 (LTB4), thromboxane B2 (TXB2), and myeloperoxidase (MPO) in the serum and inflamed tissues and increase macrophages activity
The Small Peptide: Thymosin Beta 4
Thymosin is a hormone secreted from the thymus. Its primary function is to stimulate the production of T cells, which are an important part of the immune system. Thymosin also assists in the development of B cells to plasma cells to produce antibodies. The predominant form of thymosin, thymosin beta 4, is an actin, meaning it’s a cell building protein.
This cell-building protein is an essential component of cell structure and movement, which leads to its role in tissue repair. Tβ4 has been found to play an important role in protection, regeneration, and remodeling of injured or damaged tissues.
After an injury, Tβ4 is released by platelets and numerous other types of cells to protect the most damaged cells and tissues, reducing inflammation and microbial growth.
14 Benefits of Thymosin Beta 4:
- Reduced inflammation of tissue in joints
- Increased exchange of substances between cells
- Encourages the growth of new blood cells in tissue
- Calms muscle spasm
- Improved muscle tone
- Encourages tissue repair
- Stretches connective tissue
- Helps maintain flexibility
- Increased endurance and strength
- Prevents the formation of adhesions and fibrous bands in muscles, tendons, and ligaments
- Reduces the infarct size and improves heart contractile performance
- Therapeutic effect on corneal injury and dry eye syndrome
- Antifibrotic effect on the liver
- Accelerates hair growth
Recent studies have revealed that the first gene to be upregulated after an injury is a Tβ4 gene. As the body begins the recovery process, Tβ4 aids in the creation of new vessels in the injured area, which carry blood, nutrients, and reparative substances to the site. Tβ4 also has anti-inflammatory properties and works to decrease the number of inflammatory cells. We will utilize an oral version in our treatments.
While we currently offer BPC-157 and TB4 peptide treatments, we will likely be adding several more in the future, including the following:
We will also expand our repertoire to include a number of other interesting peptides as well, some of which will increase the health of our mitochondria. One such peptide is MOTS-c.
MOTS-c has been shown to target the skeletal muscle and enhance glucose metabolism. As such, MOTS-c has implications in the regulation of obesity, diabetes, exercise, and longevity, representing an entirely novel mitochondrial signaling mechanism to regulate metabolism within and between cells. Remember, most diseases are in some way related to mitochondrial malfunction.
Sermorelin, Ipamorelin and Other Stimulators of Growth Hormone
Another set of peptides that we may utilize include sermorelin and ipamorelin, which can be used to increase the growth hormone levels in the body. Growth hormone can have many far-reaching effects, including treatment for a variety of conditions, from weight loss to increasing muscle mass and helping repair and recover from injuries.
Another similar peptide is CJC-1295. CJC-1295 and ipamorelin are typically combined in therapy because they are known to work well together. These peptides allow your pituitary gland to produce the growth hormone. When one takes actual growth hormone it will diminish the production of growth hormone by the pituitary gland. IGR1-LR3 is a breakthrough peptide that has shown great results without many of the side effects or risks of other more commonly prescribed fat loss medications.
IGF-1 LR3 inhibits the movement of glucose into the body’s cells which facilitates fat burning and the use of fat in the body for the production of energy. It functions differently in different types of tissues. For instance, in muscle tissue, it makes the muscle more sensitive to insulin’s effects, such as a reduction in fat storage.
Epithalon Telomere Enhancer
Epithalon (also known as epitalon or epithalone) is the synthetic version of the polypeptide epithalamin, which is naturally produced in the pineal gland. Epithalon’s primary role is to increase the natural production of telomerase, a natural enzyme that helps cells reproduce telomeres, which are the protective parts of our DNA. This allows the replication of our DNA so the body can grow new cells and rejuvenate old ones.
Each cell contains DNA as an instruction manual for how to divide and grow and the DNA inside of each cell is shielded by proteins called telomeres.
During cellular division, a new cell must take some telomeres from its originating cell to shield the DNA of the new cell. The telomeres shorten after every cell division because the new cell can only take a portion of the telomeres from the previous cell, or else the previous cell’s DNA will become completely unprotected.
Once there are no leftover telomeres to take, the cell stops dividing. This happens after a single cell divides and grows about 64 other cells, which is known as the Hayflick limit. This limit exists because cells without shield material are more vulnerable to DNA damage.
If the DNA of a cell becomes damaged, the cell will follow broken instructions. If the instructions within the DNA of the cell are damaged, then the cell may not be able to eliminate itself through the process of apoptosis like it is supposed to.
As time goes on we will add more and more peptides to our armamentarium. I look forward to making exciting new updates to this article on a regular basis! Dr. P
NOTE: Some people are curious as to whether peptides are steroids. The answer is “no”. Peptides have far fewer side effects than steroids.
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