Have you ever wondered how new nutritional supplements are discovered? Historically speaking, there’s more than one answer to this question.
Lately, a new technique for identifying blockbuster supplements of the future has emerged:
Researchers are using massive computers, equipped with the latest language learning models, to comb biochemical databases looking for any and all organic compounds that can achieve a given desired effect.
PeptiStrong from Nuritas: A Pro-Anabolic Natural Peptide Network
Artificial intelligence, or AI, is how Nuritas brought the world PeptiStrong, a pro-anabolic natural peptide network sourced from fava beans. As we’ll see, this is an anabolic ingredient with amazing promise.
In this article, we’ll dig deep into the science behind how PeptiStrong can help you build a lean, healthy body. But there is a bigger story here: how PeptiStrong was identified. Given that over 400 peptides have been found in fava beans thus far, it’s exceedingly unlikely that anyone would have discovered the unique anabolic properties of the specific PeptiStrong peptides by chance, or even trial and error.
Before diving deep, feel free to sign up for our Nuritas news alerts on PricePlow so we can keep you updated when new products drop. At the bottom of this article, we also list some suggested supplements using PeptiStrong:
Subscribe to PricePlow’s Newsletter and Alerts on These Topics
How was PeptiStrong discovered?
Nuritas, a cutting-edge nutraceutical research company, points out in their promotional literature for PeptiStrong that peptides like this are hidden in nature. They’re not hiding, but simply obscured. The sheer number of peptides one would have to manually wade through in order to find one with interesting effects on human physiology is barely conceivable.
In other words, the development of PeptiStrong was most likely only possible thanks to the recent proliferation of AI-driven research tools.
PeptiStrong isn’t the first AI-developed supplement we’ve written about, and it certainly won’t be the last. We can already see how AI in supplement R&D is going to transform not just the industry, but also consumer health and wellness. As a consumer, you will certainly get more value for your supplement dollar, but you’ll also get healthier as more powerful and more targeted nutritional supplements hit the market thanks to AI.
Long story short, Nuritas deserves major props for leading the industry with their powerful Magnifier AI system.
With the backstory out of the way, let’s take a look at how PeptiStrong works:
Leveraging Metabolic Information
The human body isn’t just a machine that reacts to chemical and electronic impulses – it’s also an informational machine.
To illustrate what we mean, let’s look at a familiar example: weight loss. All of us know what a calorie is, and have heard that to lose weight, you need to burn more calories than you consume. This is roughly true, and caloric restriction is a reliable way to lose weight. Technically, however, the picture is more complicated than just a thermodynamic energy balance.
Not all calories are created equal, in the sense that certain kinds of foods can affect hormones, for better or worse. For example, if you’re diabetic or prediabetic, with insulin resistance, you might do well to minimize your carbohydrate intake. That’s because insulin is a hormone responsible for disposing of the glucose in your blood. If the process isn’t working well, unrestricted carbohydrate intake can lead to dire consequences for your body.
Note that in this example, a diabetic person and a healthy person will have drastically different responses to the exact same amount and same type of food. That’s what we mean when we talk about informational effects.
As one researcher puts it, food has biological effects “beyond the purely nutritional.” Some food-borne compounds can also alter the expression of certain genes, thus modifying your risk of developing cancer and other diseases.[3,4]
What all of this means is that if we want to optimize our health and achieve our fitness goals, it behooves us to leverage informational mechanisms like genes, hormones, and metabolic switches.
Mammalian Target of Rapamycin (mTOR) and the Anabolic Response
One of these metabolic switches is called mammalian target of rapamycin (mTOR), a protein kinase enzyme that modifies proteins by transferring phosphate groups (and thus, potential energy) between them in a process called phosphorylation.
mTOR-driven phosphorylation is a complex topic, but basically, this is how your body regulates protein metabolism, and thus cellular proliferation and differentiation. In fact, mTOR is an ancient evolutionarily conserved mechanism. It was first discovered in yeast and is present in all eukaryotic organisms.
So is mTOR activation good or bad?
The answer is, unfortunately, it depends. Unduly inhibiting mTOR in mammals can cause muscle wasting, which is obviously not something we want. But activating mTOR prevents muscle loss in mammals that are involuntarily immobilized. Based on these two facts, you’d assume we want to crank up mTOR as much as possible – not so fast! Rapamycin, an mTOR inhibitor, can increase lifespan and preserve muscle in aging organisms.
As it turns out, the end result of mTOR activation depends on how and for how long it’s activated. All the cells in your body are created from proteins, and this process is governed globally by mTOR. The cellular proliferation caused by mTOR activation is good at certain times, such as immediately following a workout when your body responds to training stimulus by building muscle through hypertrophy. In this situation, your muscles need mTOR to grow.
PeptiStrong – mTOR activation on demand
What we want is targeted mTOR activation – we want to turn mTOR on after a workout, and keep it off when it’s not needed. Targeted mTOR activation is what PeptiStrong gives us.
More specifically, we want mTOR to combine with two other regulatory proteins called raptor and mLST8 to form a protein complex called mTORC1. It’s mTORC1 that’s actually responsible for driving muscle growth by regulating downstream messengers.
Inhibiting mTOR prevents mTORC1 expression, which is why animal studies show that knocking out the mTOR gene causes rapid muscle loss and impaired hypertrophic response to exercise.
So, to maximize gains, we should make sure mTOR and mTORC1 are upregulated at the right time.
mTORC1 and ribosomal biogenesis
When mTORC1 gets upregulated through mTOR activation, it causes the phosphorylation of a protein called S6 ribosomal protein, which is responsible for creating new ribosomes through a process called ribosomal biogenesis. The reason this matters is that ribosomes are responsible for synthesizing complex proteins out of simple ones. Your cells use ribosomes to build new cells, including muscle cells, and that’s how mTOR activation ultimately supports muscle growth.
As one study title puts it, ribosomal biogenesis is necessary for skeletal muscle growth.
PeptiStrong Mechanisms of Action
Upregulates S6 Ribosomal Protein
One of the earlier pre-clinical studies on PeptiStrong showed significantly greater expression of S6K1-phosphorylated S6 ribosomal protein, which implies greater mTOR and mTORC1 activation.
PeptiStrong reduces inflammatory markers associated with exercise
Inflammation can inhibit the body’s anabolic response, thus decreasing muscle mass gains from exercise. It can also damage existing muscle tissue,[16,17] which is obviously something we want to avoid just as much as we want to maximize the anabolic response.
That’s why it’s really cool that in the same pre-clinical study, the researchers found that the PeptiStrong peptides can maintain a healthy level of tumor necrosis factor alpha (TNF-α), an inflammatory cytokine. TNF-α is associated with muscle wasting, including age-related muscle loss.
Regardless of whether you want to add new muscle or keep the muscle you have already, keeping TNF-α in check is a good metabolic strategy, and PeptiStrong can help you pursue it.
Now that we have some idea of how PeptiStrong works, let’s take a look at what this remarkable peptide can do in a couple real-world studies.
Recovery, strength gain, and muscle damage
First, a 2023 study examined PeptiStrong’s ability to improve recovery from exercise. The authors were particularly interested in whether PeptiStrong could help regain strength and performance following exercise.
Doing resistance training as we age is important because muscle mass is crucial for overall health and longevity in our later years. The problem is that older people don’t recover from exercise as well as those who are younger. Supplements like PeptiStrong can potentially help them stay in the gym by minimizing the downside of exercise and improving results at the same time.
In this randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled study, the researchers assigned 30 healthy, recreationally active males between the ages of 30 and 45 to take either a placebo or 2.4 grams of PeptiStrong daily for 14 days.
The day after the treatment period, the men completed a 5-minute exercise cycle warm-up, and were then put through resistance training in the form of a knee flexion and extension test. The intensity of the training was controlled by an isokinetic dynamometer, which allowed the researchers to precisely choose the level of effort for each volunteer.
After a warm-up set of 5 reps, building from 60% to 100% of maximal effort, the subjects did two 5-repetition sets at maximal effort. After the completion of the test, researchers analyzed their recovery and various biomarkers at regular intervals for up to 72 hours.
When the researchers measured the subjects’ ability to generate torque following the completion of the exercise, they found that at the 72 hour mark, the PeptiStrong group was actually stronger, i.e. they could generate more torque than before the exercise. By contrast, the placebo group hadn’t even recovered their baseline ability.
The PeptiStrong group also scored significantly better on a fatigue index, indicating that the subjects using PeptiStrong had improved muscular endurance.
The researchers also tracked the subjects’ blood concentrations of a few key myokines, which are messenger molecules that perform a signaling role in muscle growth following exercise. These myokines are good examples of the informational mechanisms we discussed at the beginning of this article.
Although interleukins like IL-6 and IL-15 get a bad rap because of the role they play in systemic inflammation, they actually function as myokines following exercise.[22,23] So, in this case, it’s actually good that the PeptiStrong group showed a significant increase in blood concentrations of both.
Fractalkine and irisin, two other known myokines, were also significantly higher in the PeptiStrong group.
Probably the most impressive and intriguing result in this study was PeptiStrong’s impact on myostatin. Myostatin is a protein that actually inhibits muscle growth – think of it as your body’s anabolic thermostat.
Because of this, bringing a myostatin inhibitor to market has been a sort of holy grail in two industries: nutritional supplements and pharmaceuticals. While the attempts made thus far haven’t been very impressive, it’s remarkable that PeptiStrong seems to have such a positive effect on myostatin.
No doubt, the improvement in myokine profile is a huge reason why the PeptiStrong group recovered so much faster than the placebo group. It’s likely they were stronger at the 72 hour mark – the myokine upregulation may support the growth of muscle tissue.
One thing to note about this study is that the subjects did not take PeptiStrong the day of the test – just the 14 days leading up to it. This suggests a persistent or semi-permanent effect from PeptiStrong supplementation.
In a 2023 study, researchers looked at how PeptiStrong could help muscle tissue endure and recover from atrophy caused by forced muscle immobilization.
For seven days, 30 young men wore a plaster cast that prevented knee flexion. By forcibly immobilizing the leg, the researchers induced some atrophy in the leg muscles. The volunteers were given seven days to recover when their cast was removed. During this period, half the men were randomized to get either 20 grams of PeptiStrong or 20 grams of milk protein daily and the researchers directly compared the extent of muscular atrophy and recovery in both groups.
The interesting thing to note about this study design is that 20 grams of protein is not an anabolic dose of protein – on its own, that quantity should not be enough to affect a person’s rate of muscle loss or recovery. The idea behind selecting this dose was to illustrate that PeptiStrong is not just a dietary protein, but rather, a network of peptides with informational signaling effects on muscle anabolism.
Although there wasn’t much of a difference between the two groups in terms of muscle lost during the seven day immobilization period, the researchers did find that, on average, the PeptiStrong group had a muscle protein synthesis rate much higher than the milk protein group. This indicates faster recovery from atrophy caused by forced leg immobilization.
The researchers point out that although there wasn’t a significant difference between the two groups in terms of muscle loss, strength loss, or recovery, the difference in muscle synthesis does warrant followup studies to identify a difference in total recovery. Since the process of recovery from immobilization is much longer than seven days – it’s actually closer to seven weeks – this study most likely didn’t give the subjects enough time for differences in overall recovery to manifest from differences in muscle synthesis.
Supplements using PeptiStrong
Below are some key products using PeptiStrong (PricePlow is affiliated with the brands and/or retail stores where they are sold):
- Glaxon Anomaly – A capsule-based product using 2.4 grams of PeptiStrong per serving that also includes a testosterone-supporting ingredient named geranylgeraniol (GG).
- Beyond Raw Dynamic Whey – An optimized whey protein powder that utilizes io Technology to improve amino acid absorption alongside a 2.4 gram dose of PeptiStrong.
More products are to come — there will also be an area at the bottom of this article showing all blog posts on PricePlow featuring PeptiStrong.
In regards to the immobilization study, the faster rate of recovery for the PeptiStrong group does validate the central point of the study design, which is that PeptiStrong is more than just dietary protein. While PeptiStrong is technically a dietary protein, its anabolic effects are not caused by increased protein supply. Rather, it helps the body use available protein more efficiently, which is why PeptiStrong significantly outperforms equivalent doses of milk protein.
Consider this analogy: Your body is an engine and protein is gasoline. PeptiStrong doesn’t power the engine by supplying more fuel to the tank; it works by making the engine more efficient.
Be sure to sign up for our PeptiStrong news alerts below, and see all of our articles featuring the ingredient on the PricePlow Blog: