Modified ecdysteroids with more anabolic effect
Maybe ecdysteroids - a group of anabolic steroidlike hormones from plants that you can buy as a sports supplement - should be on the doping list. That is what German biochemists wrote three years ago. It didn't come to that. But if the modified ecdysteroids that Hungarian chemists have discovered are released on the market, this may change. In test tubes, the anabolic effect of some of these ecdysteroids is three times greater than the anabolic effect of regular ecdysteroids.
Ecdysteroids are steroidal substances in plants such as spinach and quinoa. The most important is ecdysterone. In animal studies ecdysterone increases muscle mass, stimulates the growth of cartilage in the joints and rejuvenates the skin.
Hungarian chemists, associated with the University of Szeged, reported in 2015 that poststerone, a kind of stripped version of ecdysterone, had a greater anabolic effect in test tubes than ecdysterone. [J Nat Prod. 2015 Oct 23;78(10):2339-45.] Poststerone is present in small amounts in almost all plants that also contain ecdysterone, and may also occur in the body through the conversion of ecdysterone.
That's nice, the Hungarians thought. And so, in their lab, they started to make more stripped ecdysteroids - in the hope that they would find substances with even a greater anabolic effect than poststerone. And, as they write in an article that has appeared in Bioorganic Chemistry, they succeeded.
They found 8 stripped ecdysteroids which were more anabolic than ecdysterone, to be precise. Ecdysteroids activate the anabolic signaling molecule Akt. The
researchers even found 3 compounds that activated Akt a factor 3 times more potent than ecdysterone [compounds 11, 12 and 16].
As far as we know, most of the compounds the Hungarians synthesized, do not occur in nature. They have never been described.
You can wait for it. A smart enterpreneur will put these substances in a sports supplement and put them on the market. But can we still classify these new ecdysteroids as natural substances? Can we allow these substances to be in supplements?
Isn't this doping?
Bioorg Chem. 2018 Oct 31;82:405-13.
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