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14.11.2012


Phosphatidic acid works for strength athletes

Phosphatidic Acid
It looks as though the strength sports world is about to become a new and promising supplement richer. An article recently published in the Journal of the International Society of Sports Nutrition describes the effect of phosphatidic acid supplementation on strength athletes.

A key molecule when it comes to muscle growth is mTOR, and nutrients that activate mTOR have become a kind of Holy Grail in the sports nutrition world. These substances can help strength athletes to build muscle mass and strength, and may also be able to prevent muscle loss in the frail and elderly.

In 2001 biologists at the University of In at Urbana-Champaign discovered that phosphatidic acid 1,2-diacyl-sn-glycero-3-phosphate , a compound found in minute quantities in membranes, is one of these nutrients. [Science. 2001 Nov 30;294(5548):1942-5.]

When muscle cells are subject to exertion they use phosphatidic acid as a messenger substance to activate signal molecules like mTOR. [Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2006 Mar 21; 103(12): 4741-6.] This would suggest that it's possible to boost the anabolic stimulus of strength training by using phosphatidic acid as a supplement.

Researchers at the University of Central Florida and Increnovo [increnovo.com] tested this theory in an experiment involving 16 test subjects in their twenties, all of whom had been doing weight training for at least a year. Of the group, nine took a placebo [PL] for eight weeks and seven took a daily dose of 750 mg phosphatidic acid in capsule form [PA]. The product used was manufactured by Chemi Nutra [cheminutra.com], which markets phosphatidic acid under the name of Mediator.

The experimental group's lean body mass increased by 2.6 percent. The increase in the placebo group was only 0.1 percent. The results are shown below.


Phosphatidic acid works for strength athletes


Phosphatidic acid works for strength athletes


The maximal weight with which the test subjects in the phosphatidic acid group could squat increased by 12.7 percent as the figure above shows. In the placebo group the increase was 9.3 percent.

The table below summarises all the effects that were measured. The phosphatidic acid group performed better than the placebo group on all points. Although none of the differences were statistically significant, for the maximal squat and the lean body mass the figures did come near to being significant. The researchers are confident that, even though more research is needed, phosphatidic acid works.


Phosphatidic acid works for strength athletes


The study was funded by Chemi Nutra, and the company has filed a patent application for the use of phosphatidic acid in supplements for strength athletes. [Application US 20120141448] Interestingly, the patent application mentions using phosphatidic acid in combination with creatine. And after reading the study this is exactly the question that piques our curiosity: what happens if you combine phosphatidic acid with creatine?

The patent names two researchers at Increnovo who worked on the study, Martin Purpura and Ralf Jaeger, as co-inventors. And they are also the researchers who invented the creatine-tarragon combination.

Source:
J Int Soc Sports Nutr. 2012 Oct 5;9(1):47. [Epub ahead of print].

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