Thursday September 19, 2019

Protein Found in Spinach May Treat Alcohol Abuse, Mood Disorders

The researchers are actively pursuing synthetic and computational strategies to improve these peptides to make them more effective

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Spinach, wikimedia

A large protein found in spinach may aid in the development of new medications for millions around the world dealing with alcohol use disorders, chronic pain and mood disorders, researchers said.

The study, led by researchers from the Purdue University, discovered two peptides which are naturally metabolic products of Rubisco — a large protein found in many plants like spinach — that may aid in the development of new medications.

“These disorders are currently not adequately managed,” said Richard van Rijn, Assistant Professor at Purdue.

 “Better medications that take a more holistic approach and produce fewer side effects will be beneficial.

“We discovered that these peptides selectively activate the known beneficial pathways without activating the ‘side-effect pathways’ of the receptor,” van Rijn added.

Spinach-protein may offer treatment for alcohol abuse, mood disorders.

The discovery, published in the European Neuropsychopharmacolgy, aims to develop molecules that only activate the cellular signalling pathways associated with their therapeutic effect.

Preclinical studies suggest that the peptides are orally bioavailable and able to penetrate the blood-brain barrier, both of which are necessary for a drug to effectively treat a disorder of the central nervous system, van Rijn said.

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The researchers are actively pursuing synthetic and computational strategies to improve these peptides to make them more effective.

The rubiscolin peptides are also being investigated for their ability to regulate dietary intake and are even commercially available in anti-ageing skin products. (IANS)

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Protein Shakes may Not be Most Effective Way to Relieve Aching Muscles

While proteins and carbohydrates are essential for the effective repair of muscle fibres following intensive strength training

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Protein, Shakes, Aching Muscles
The researchers have found that neither whey-protein based shakes nor milk-based formulas enhanced the rate of muscle recovery following resistance training when compared to a carbohydrate only drink. LifetimeStock

Protein shakes have long been touted as a gym bag essential, consumed by gym-goers in an effort to boost muscle recovery and minimise post-workout muscle soreness, but they may not be the most effective way to relieve aching muscles, a new study suggests.

The researchers have found that neither whey-protein based shakes nor milk-based formulas enhanced the rate of muscle recovery following resistance training when compared to a carbohydrate only drink.

“While proteins and carbohydrates are essential for the effective repair of muscle fibres following intensive strength training, our research suggests that varying the form of protein immediately following training does not strongly influence the recovery response or reduce muscle pain,” said study lead by author Thomas Gee from the University of Lincoln in the UK.

The experiment involved 30 male participants, all of whom had at least a year’s resistance training experience.

Protein, Shakes, Aching Muscles
Protein shakes have long been touted as a gym bag essential, consumed by gym-goers in an effort to boost muscle recovery and minimise post-workout muscle soreness, but they may not be the most effective way to relieve aching muscles, a new study suggests. LifetimeStock

Researchers asked participants to rate their levels of muscle soreness on a visual scale from ‘no muscle soreness’ (0) through to ‘muscle soreness as bad as it could be’ (200).

Participants also completed a series of strength and power assessments to test their muscle function.

The results showed a significant rise in the levels of muscle soreness across the three groups 24 hours and 48 hours after the initial resistance training session, with ratings for all groups rising to over 90, significantly higher than the groups baseline ratings, which ranged from 19-26.

The study also showed reductions in muscle power and function.

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The findings published in the journal Human Kinetics, suggest there was no difference in recovery response between the different formulas and no additional benefit of protein consumption on muscle recovery.

“The dependence on protein shakes is one of the fads that need to be dispelled, especially when one uses it as a post-workout concoction to combat muscle pain,” Ashutosh Jha, Consultant Orthopaedics, Columbia Asia Hospital in Ghaziabad, told IANS. (IANS)