Pentadecapeptide BPC 157 (PL 14736) for the Regenerative Healing of Muscle, Tendons and Ligaments – Part 1
BPC-157 is a synthetic peptide that is being investigated for its regenerative effects.
BPC is an acronym for Body Protective Compound
What is a Peptide ?
A peptide is simply a series, or a chain, of amino acids (Valine, leucine, arganine, histadine, glutamine, etc). Peptides are not full proteins, but fragments of proteins.
BPC-157 is often referred to as “a pentadecapeptide”. That is not actually correct as BPC-157 is not “a” pentadecapeptide, rather it is simply pentadecapeptide. .
BPC-157 has been evaluated in multiple surrogate studies dating back to 1991 showing high efficacy for healing effects on muscle tears and ligaments (specifically Achilles’s tendons) in rats suffering toxic or surgical trauma
Further research has shown BPC-157 appears to have a variety of protective effects that range from tendon and ligaments to Gastic Healing, its even Neuroprotective in the context of certain Brain Trauma
Are there Human Trials ?
Yes in the domain of Gastric Healing where we have studies to consider re the healing of ulcers throughout the entire GI tract, from periodontal disease to rectal ulcers, even things like Chron’s Disease , and Irritable Bowel Syndrome, appear to response positively to correctly dosed and administered BPC-157
However to date there are NO Human Trials in the domain of safety or efficacy on muscle tears, tendons and ligaments.
Safety Profile ?
To date no adverse events have been noted in Surrogate or Human Trials or via Anecdotal Experience by our Tribe.
How BPC-157 works
The main characteristics of wound healing are the formation of granulation tissue, angiogenesis and production of collagen.
Granulation tissue is new connective tissue and microscopic blood vessels that form on the surfaces of a wound during the healing process. Granulation tissue typically grows from the base of a wound and is able to fill wounds of almost any size.
Angiogenesis refers to the formation of vessels and it here that BPC-157 appears to influence its effect on wound healing by facilitating angiogenesis
Typically blood supply to an ulcer and a tendon is low, and this is why ulcers and tendons dont heal as well a skeletal muscle wounds do which are rich in blood flow.
BPC-157 appears to activate a protein known as VEGFR2 and internalizes it within a cell, which then activates a particular pathway (VEGFR2-Akt-eNOS) that is important in blood vessel production and repair.
The growth factor EGF-1 may also be related to the observed benefits of BCP-157.
BPC-157 by modulating Vaso Endothelial Growth Factor (VEGF) causes capillaries to grow into a new area to carry blood and nutrients in and out of the injured area.
Applications for our Tribe in Muscle and Tendon and Ligament Repair
Some of the most frequently incurred injuries in Bodybuilder and Power Lifters and Strongmen involve ‘soft tissues’ including skeletal muscles, tendons and ligaments.
The majority of injury complaints, result from some form of incomplete or complete tear in the fibres that comprise the structure of the functioning tissue
The healing capacity and timelines of recovery for these tissues vary significantly, depending on several factors.
Some of these factors include the cellular composition and vascular nature of the tissue(s) in question.
As an example, tendon tissue is composed primarily of tendon fibroblastic cells and extracellular matrix, which contains predominantly type I ans type III collagen and glycoproteins (Fukuta et al. 1998).
The general healing process can be divided into three overlapping phases:
1. inflammatory phase (days 1–5),
2. repair/proliferative phase (days 5–14)
3. remodelling phase (days 14–90+)
In Tendon repair following the remodelling phase, a higher proportion of synthesised collagen, along with a decrease in cellularity, glycosaminoglycan content and type III collagen can be observed.
This change, coupled with the tendon tissues already hypocellular ( low level of cellularity ) and hypovascular nature ( lacking vascular structure ) can result in a ‘slow’ process of healing.
Even after 12 months post-injury or surgical intervention, Tendon tissue can lack the biomechanical and ultrastructural characteristics it had prior to the injury.
In part 2 we are going to look at ” how” we might use BPC-157 to effect an increase in healing rates of Hypovascular Tissue
IMO this is NOT a stand alone ” fix” rather forms one part of a large Injury recovery strategy.