Research and Development, fondly referred to as R&D, is today considered to be one of the most important growth components. A well-developed R&D system results in massive advancements in whatever field of endeavor in which it is employed.
We’ve seen a massive growth in medical research among other things and one thing that has played a major role here is research peptides. Given its importance, this article will focus on providing some basic information that will help the reader come to a better understanding of this important compound.
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What are Research Peptides?
These are a variation of amino acid polymers created by humans through chemical processes in the laboratory. They are created to behave like the peptides produced naturally in the body. This is why they are often referred to as synthetic peptides. Their main purpose is to help with researches that have to do with the workings of naturally occurring peptides in the body.
To put things in proper context, peptides are generally considered to be of immense importance to several cellular activities that are crucial to healthy living. They are between 2 and 50 amino acids held together by what is known as peptide bonds to form these chains of amino acids. Of course, we know that amino acids are the basic constituting blocks of proteins, which means that peptides are simply proteins.
Common Types of Research Peptides and their Applications
To aid efficient research, these peptides synthesized for research purposes come in different types. Each of the different types offer unique properties that make each best suited for specific applications. Let’s look at some of the most common types:
Growth Hormone-releasing Peptides (GHRPs)
These GHRPs often used for researches that have to do with tissue repair, anti-aging and enhancing sports performance. This is because they generally aid the production of growth hormones, enhance fat loss, promote muscle growth and more.
This peptide is derived from ACTH (Adrenocorticotropic Hormone), thought to be great for its neuroprotective and cognitive-enhancing effects. More importantly, Semax Peptide is a heptapeptide and given the above, it is often used by scientists researching at treatment options for neurodegenerative disorders and other cognitive impairments.
This is one is known for its impressive ability to aid the repair of tissues and healing of wounds. It’s therefore obvious that it will be an important part of any researches into different aspects of recovery from injury, both internal and external.
This peptide was primarily created to aid in the treatment of skin cancer. With the emergence of more information, it was found that this compound can improve the body’s ability to produce melanin. Given the function of melanin with respect to skin pigmentation, the research with Melanotan II has now focused on using it for the treatment of skin conditions like Vitiligo. It’s being considered for a treatment that can result in skin tanning without the need for exposure to the sun.
Synthesis and Production of Research Peptides
Research peptides are synthesized in the laboratory very carefully to create custom products. There are different methods that can be employed during this process. Of course, each method has its pro and cons. We will quickly look at some of the more common of them right away.
Solid-phase Peptide Synthesis (SPPS)
This is easily the most commonly used method for synthesizing these amino acid polymers. Through some chemical reactions, amino acids are attached in a sequence, one after the other to a solid base. The most commonly used support are resins.
This method can deliver pretty high yields of peptides with an equally high purity level. This is because the entire process is basically automated. One important thing to note, which can also be a downside, is that the number of amino acids to be added and the complexity of the sequence will significantly impact the process.
Liquid-phase Peptide Synthesis (LPPS)
This is a method that was popularly used before the SPPS became more popular. Whereas a solid support is used in the SPPS, this synthesis is carried inside a liquid solution. This method is usually able to deliver longer and more complex peptide designs. However, to achieve this, a purification process that is way more demanding is required. This therefore means that you can’t produce as much as you can with the SPPS method.
Microwave-assisted Peptide Synthesis
We mentioned the limitations associated with the LPPS method. This limitation is overcome here with the use of microwave radiation as a catalyst for speeding up the reaction process. With this addition, the production of high quality peptides is made much faster. This makes the microwave assisted method the ideal method for large scale peptide production.
Applications of Research Peptides
Like we stated much earlier in this article, there are a lot of applications that research peptides can be put to. In this section we will quickly look at some of the more common ones:
Healthcare and Pharmaceutical Research
This is a very important and well known application of this compound. Some examples include:
- Therapeutics – Some intervention drugs that have emerged from this include: insulin for diabetes, glucagon-like peptide-1 (GLP-1) agonists for type 2 diabetes, and enfuvirtide for HIV/AIDS.
- Drug discovery and development – Since they can be used to study protein-protein interactions, enzyme inhibition, and receptor binding, researchers can more easily identify potential drug targets and design new therapeutic agents.
- Diagnostic tools – As bookmarking or diagnostic tools, research peptides can detect and monitor various diseases and conditions. Examples include prostate-specific antigen (PSA), a peptide, that’s used to screen for prostate cancer and amyloid-beta peptides that are used as biomarkers in Alzheimer’s disease.
Fitness and Sports Performance
We also find that these amino acid polymers play a major role in this area. Let’s look at some examples:
- Injury prevention and rehabilitation – BPC-157 is one peptide that has shown tremendous ability to enhance the healing of wounds and repair damaged tissues.
- Muscle growth and recovery – Some peptides are known for promoting muscle growth, recovery, and overall athletic performance. These include insulin-like growth factor-1 (IGF-1) and growth hormone-releasing peptides (GHRPs).
- Fat loss and metabolism regulation – This is a big deal considering how major weight loss is in today’s world. There are certain peptides that have shown great process in their ability to help regulate the body’s metabolism and by so doing, help in the management of weight.
Cosmetics and Skincare
Skincare and cosmetic treatment is another area in which peptides have found several applications. A few include:
- Anti-aging and skin rejuvenation – Some research peptides have been added into several products designed for anti-aging and skin rejuvenation because they are thought to be great for these purposes. Examples include matrixyl and copper peptides. The thinking is that they may help the body produce more collagen which will in turn reduce wrinkles and the like.
- Wound healing and scar reduction – As more research is carried out daily on various aspects of cosmetic skincare, peptides like BPC-157 and thymosin beta-4 play active roles because of the promise they hold with regards to promoting scar reduction and wound healing.
Needless to say, the examples we’ve given above are just a sample of the applications that these amino acid polymers can be put to. Even with the abridged list we just shared, it is clear that they are indeed important across various fields.
You can learn more about other applications here: https://peptidesguide.com/.
We’ve taken some time to discuss the basics of research peptides with a view to providing you with a guide to what exactly this compound is and how useful it is to our lives as humans. With the information we’ve shared here, we hope you can now look at this subject with better understanding and appreciation.