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Designer Anabolic/ Anti-catabolic Agents


Anabolic steroids (testosterone) increase FFM and muscular strength. ... Popular 'Body Building' Supplements. Anabolic: Growth Hormone secretagogues ... – PowerPoint PPT presentation

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Title: Designer Anabolic/ Anti-catabolic Agents

Designer Anabolic/ Anti-catabolic Agents
  • Lecture 21

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What works?
  • We know that
  • Anabolic steroids (testosterone) increase FFM and
    muscular strength. They also have an
    anti-catabolic effect.
  • Schedule III drug available legally with a
  • Prohormones (androstenedione and androstenediol)
    have some (maybe) effect increasing FFM or
    strength performance.
  • Sale of androstenedione and androstenediol (but
    not DHEA) restricted by U.S. govt. in late 2005

What works?
  • We know that
  • Anabolic steroids (testosterone) increase FFM and
    muscular strength. They also have an
    anti-catabolic effect.
  • Prohormones (androstenedione and androstenediol)
    have no apparent effect on increasing FFM or
    strength performance.
  • Creatine - will be talking about creatine on

  • Are there other products that work to increase
    FFM, strength and power?
  • Anabolic (growth hormone secretagogues)
  • Anti-catabolic (inhibitors of protein degradation)

Popular Body Building Supplements
  • Anabolic
  • Growth Hormone secretagogues
  • Zinc/Magnesium Aspartate (ZMA)
  • Arginine alpha-ketoglutarate (AAKG)
  • Anti-catabolics
  • Beta-hydroxy beta-methylbutyrate (HMB)

  • Growth hormone (somatotropin)
  • Stimulates bone and cartilage growth
  • Facilitates protein synthesis
  • Increasing amino acid transport into muscle
  • Stimulating RNA formation
  • Facilitating protein synthesis
  • Also slows CHO breakdown and mobilizes fat as an
    energy source.
  • Exercise stimulates an increase in circulating GH
  • and preserves plasma glucose for the CNS.

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Growth Hormone Ergogenic Aid
  • Use medically, children who suffer from GH
    deficiencies or kidney failure
  • Reduced GH low FFM and high fat mass
  • Increased GH in youth gigantism
  • Acromegaly enlarged hands, feet and facial
  • Synthetic growth hormone (recombinant DNA
    production) is used by athletes and bodybuilders
    to increase strength performance.

Growth Hormone Performance
  • Appealing to strength and power athletes because
    at physiological levels
  • Stimulates amino acid uptake and protein
  • Enhances fat breakdown
  • Conserves glycogen reserves
  • Also GH does not suppress the body's
  • hypothalamic-pituitary-gonadal axis like
  • anabolic steroids. Use can be continuous.

  • One study found that 6 weeks of resistance
  • training with GH decreased body fat and increased
  • FFM significantly (but second study found no
  • GH is illegal and very expensive. The hormone
  • can only be obtained on the black market and can
  • cost 500-4000/month.
  • GH is usually stacked with anabolic steroids and
  • typically used with insulin to get maximum
  • Body-builders use the combination to achieve the
  • desired muscle size, vascularity and appearance
  • paper thin skin sucked to muscle.
  • Growth hormone use can lead to diabetes

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Growth hormone secretagogues
  • Use of amino acids to stimulate GH secretion.
  • Arginine
  • Lysine
  • Ornithine
  • Exercise increases GH concentrations so these
  • amino acids are often taken before a workout to
  • further accentuate the exercise-induced GH

  • Amino acid ingestion and GH
  • Combination of arginine and lysine together seems
    to be more potent than either alone.
  • Trained individuals have a blunted response
    (especially if they are strength trained eating a
    high protein diet)
  • Women show a greater response than men
  • Amino acid ingestion, GH and exercise
  • Ingestion of amino acids before exercise does not
    increase GH more than exercise alone.
  • Consuming a protein supplement before exercise
    and immediately after exercise had no effect on
    maintaining elevated GH concentrations.

  • May be a dosage or timing issue, further studies
    necessary... There are no well-designed studies
    using specific amino acids as GH secretagogues in
    conjunction with strength training.
  • Alternatively, peptide and non-peptide compounds
    can also stimulate GH release.
  • Ex synthetic hexapeptide (GHRP-6)
  • These secretagogues do increase circulating GH
    and IGF-
  • 1, there are no published studies indicating how
  • would affect athletic performance.

Zinc/Magnesium Aspartate (ZMA)
  • Popular supplement to promote anabolism at night.
  • Zinc/magnesium deficiencies may reduce the
    production of testosterone and IGF-1 (regulates
    the action of GH)
  • Shown that athletes in training may be zinc
    deficient. Zinc participates in metabolism and
    protection against free radical damage.
  • Magnesium supplementation showed a decrease in
    cortisol (theoretically magnesium would be

  • Studies
  • Brilla and Conte reported ZMA supplementation in
    football players during off-season resistance
    training promoted increases in testosterone,
    IGF-1 and muscular strength.
  • Wilborn et al. (2004) double blind study design
  • n42 resistance trained males
  • matched according to FFM
  • Took either ZMA or placebo prior to going to
    sleep during 8 weeks of strength training
  • Results no significant differences between
    groups in hormone status, body comp, 1 RM bench
    press and leg press, muscular endurance or
    anaerobic capacity.
  • - population was resistance trained.

Arginine alpha-ketoglutarate (AAKG)
  • Anabolic and anti-catabolic
  • Arginine
  • stimulates GH release
  • Raises nitric oxide (NO) synthesis
  • NO acts as a vasodilator. Hypothesized that NO
    supplementation would enhance blood flow, oxygen
    delivery and glucose uptake by working muscles.
  • a-ketoglutarate
  • Intermediate in the TCA cycle and is a precursor
    for the synthesis of glutamine and arginine.
  • Limited data on athletic performance however,
    there is some data that suggests an
    anti-catabolic role. (similar to glutamine under
    conditions over severe stress, ex surgery)

  • Campbell et al. (2006)
  • Randomized, double-blind, controlled study design
  • 12g daily (4g, 3X per day) over 8 weeks of
    resistance training (4X per week)
  • Measures were taken at 0, 4, 8 weeks in blood
    markers, 1 RM max strength, aerobic power,
    anaerobic endurance, total body water and body

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Beta-hydroxy beta-methylbutyrate (HMB)
  • HMB is a metabolite of the amino acid leucine.
  • Found naturally in small quantities in catfish,
    citrus fruits and breast milk.
  • Leucine is an essential amino acid that has the
    highest oxidation rate of all amino acids during
  • HMB derived from leucine is converted to HMG-CoA
    in some tissues and serves as a key carbon source
    for cholesterol synthesis in various cell types.
  • - saturating the cell with HMG-CoA would allow
    the cell to undergo the maximum growth response
    (athletes, muscle hypertrophy in response to
    resistance training)

  • Supplementing with 1.5-3g/d of calcium HMB has
    demonstrated increases in muscle mass and
    strength (especially in untrained individuals
    initiating a training program)
  • Gains are typically 0.5 to 1kg greater than
    controls during 3-6 weeks of training.
  • Also evidence that HMB is anti-catabolic. HMB in
    conjunction with creatine may have an additive
    effect but results are unclear.
  • Large variability among athletes, more research
    is necessary.

  • Please check the website for a reading on
    tetrahydrogestrinone (THG), the designer anabolic
    steroid that BALCO constructed in 2002-2003.