Definition: "An ergogenic aid is any substance or phenomenon that enhances performance "

about us





Wounds heal faster with proline

You can probably speed up the process of healing a wound by taking a supplement containing the amino acid L-proline [structural formula shown below]. Biochemists at the Central Leather Research Institute in India have written on the subject in Amino Acids. Smearing a proline solution on the wound itself works even better than taking proline orally.

These days you could compile a small encyclopaedia of all the natural substances that help wounds to heal faster. The immune cells that start the process of wound healing need vitamin A, zinc and selenium for example. The formation of protein structures such as collagen requires vitamin C and thiamine, and a growing pile of studies suggest that amino acids such as ornithine, arginine and glutamic acid function as precursors for proline and hydroxyproline the building blocks for collagen, which the body uses to seal wounds.

Wounds heal faster with proline
Of course, you could also apply L-proline manually, the Indians reasoned. And as no one else had tried it out, they did so themselves. It would be great for the future compilers of the Encyclopaedia of Natural Wound Healing Enhancers: then they'd have an entry beginning with P.

The researchers anaesthetised rats and opened up an area of skin of 2 square centimetres on the back of the animals. Then they let the animals recover and monitored the wounds as they healed.

Some of the rats were given 200 mg L-proline in liquid orally every day [Oral]. The researchers administered the same amount of a solution of L-proline in drops every day on the wound to other rats [Topical]. Another group was given no proline at all [Control].

Administering L-proline speeds up the wound healing. Applying the proline directly to the wound worked best. Click on the figure below for a clearer picture.

Wounds heal faster with proline

Wounds heal faster with proline

The graph above shows that it took just over 20 days for the wounds in the control group to heal fully. In the Oral group it took 15 days for the wounds to heal, and in the Topical group 10 days.

If you convert the doses used into the equivalent for a person weighing 80 kg, you'd need about 13 g L-proline per day.

Amino Acids. 2013 Mar 19. [Epub ahead of print].

Proline supplementation stimulates immune system 14.05.2013