L Proline

L-proline is an amino acid that is contained within cartilage. It is considered to be a non-essential nutrient, because the body is capable of creating it on its own within healthy individuals. When individuals do not have special conditions or situations that put them at risk for L-proline deficiency, it is normally not necessary to add supplements. L-proline is produced by glutamic acid. While the body is capable of producing its own supply of proline, it can also be found in natural food sources of meat.

The Benefits of proline have been known about since the early twentieth century. Benefits of L-proline include the healthy maintenance of connective tissue and repairing damage to tissue, skin and muscle. It further contributes to a healthy immune system.

Healthy levels of vitamin C increase the effectiveness of L-proline. One of the most important contributions of proline is its relationship to collagen. Collagen is found throughout the body including: skin, blood vessels, tendons, bones, and the eye. Improper production of collagen has been linked to genetic disorders that result in joint and spine problems.

As individuals grow older, their natural levels of L-proline may become diminished, which could possibly account for many of the debilitating bone and joint disorders noted in older individuals. Supplemental use of L-proline may help to restore fluidity to joints.

What is L-Proline ?
Proline is a non-essential amino acid and a main component of collagen just like Lysine. Collagen, a major structural component of cells and animals, is the protein responsible in forming connective fibers in tissues such as skin, ligaments, cartilage, bones and teeth. Collagen also functions somewhat like an intracellular "glue" that provides support, shape and bulk to blood vessels, bones, and organs such as the heart, kidneys and liver. Collagen fibers keep bones and blood vessels strong, and assist in anchoring our teeth to our gums. Collagen is also needed for the repair of blood vessels, bruises, and broken bones. Since Proline is necessary to make collagen, Proline helps strengthen cardiac muscle, improves skin texture, and reduces the loss of collagen through the aging process. It can be derived from animal products such as dairy products, eggs, beef and poultry.

Proline - along with the amino acid lysine and Vitamin C - is essential for the formation of healthy collagen and cartilage. It maintains the flexibility of both muscles and joints, and helps reduce sagging and wrinkling that accompany UV exposure and normal aging of the skin. Proline is also beneficial in the formation of bone, skin and cartilage and it is of paramount importance for the proper functioning of joints and tendons. It also helps maintain and strengthen heart muscles and is helpful in tissue repair after injury, or for any type of wound healing. Proline also participates in energy production. Since meat, dairy, and eggs are the best natural sources of proline, vegetarians or those with a low-protein diet should seriously consider a combination amino acid supplement containing, among other amino acids, proline.

Proline supplements are available by itself in both capsules and tablets, but this amino acid is more often than not included in supplements marketed for treatment of specific conditions, such as herpes (in combination with lysine), arthritis, or back pain, or in supplements or sports drinks made especially for hard training people like body builders and performance athletes. Proline may also be included in supplements and medications used to maintain or achieve cardiovascular health, usually in conjunction with vitamin C. Our body is continuously synthesizing collagen with the use of Proline, Lysine, and Vitamin C to maintain and repair connective tissues lost to daily wear and tear. Without vitamin C, the formation of collagen is disrupted, and this yields to a wide range of problems throughout the body. Scurvy, the disease caused by vitamin C deficiency, is really a process that disrupts the body's ability to manufacture collagen and connective tissues.

Proline is also very important in the process of reversing atherosclerotic deposits so people can avoid open heart surgery and angioplasty. Linus Pauling, the eminent American scientist and two-time Nobel Prize winner, announced in 1989 a breakthrough in how we view and treat heart disease. In "A Unified Theory of Human Cardiovascular Disease," Linus Pauling said that the root cause of heart disease is a long-term vitamin C deficiency, not the plaque deposits present in atherosclerosis, According to him, these plaque deposits were actually the result of our bodies trying to repair the damage caused by long-term vitamin C deficiency. In essence, Pauling believed that heart disease is a form of scurvy, and plaque is the body's attempt to reinforce and patch weakened blood vessels and arteries that would otherwise rupture. Pauling also demonstrated that heart disease can be prevented or treated by taking vitamin C and other supplements.

A significant number of animal studies have been found to back up Pauling's theory. Research conducted with animals that cannot manufacture their own vitamin C found that when vitamin C levels are decreased, collagen production reduces as well making blood vessels thinner and weaker. Additional studies also confirm that when animals are deprived of vitamin C, their bodies respond by forming plaque deposits to strengthen arteries and prevent vessel. In essence, collagen can prevent atherosclerosis because it melts plaque and it keeps arteries open. In addition to taking vitamin C to prevent atherosclerosis, Pauling suggested a combination of vitamin C and the amino acids lysine and proline to help remove existing plaque while strengthening weak and damaged arteries.

In the United States, L-Proline is sold as a dietary supplement, and dietary supplements are regulated as foods, not drugs. Therefore, premarket evaluation and approval by the Food and Drug Administration are not required unless claims are made for specific disease prevention or treatment.

Benefits / uses
L-Proline is an amino acid that plays an important role in the synthesis of collagen, the most abundant protein in human body. Collagen is the principal protein and building block for the construction of all human connective tissues including skin, tendons, ligaments, cartilage, joints, bone, as well as blood vessels, arteries, veins, and lymph vessels. Supplementation with L-Proline can significantly improve the body's ability to synthesize vitally important connective tissues that can often fall into disrepair as we age. L-Proline can be a very beneficial supplement for individuals suffering from joint and connective tissue problems. Although L-Proline is synthesized by the human body, at times the amount produced may be inadequate for maintaining joint health and a healthy musculoskeletal system. Vegetarians are more likely to be deficient in L-Proline and with respect to this they stand to benefit greatly with L-Proline supplementation.

People recovering from traumatic injury, especially skin injuries such as severe burns, may want to supplement this amino acid. People with pain caused by inadequate cartilage or collagen formation could benefit from supplementary proline in their diet as well. Proline may be in supplements used to promote cardiovascular health, usually in conjunction with vitamin C. Reduction in proline levels have been observed in prolonged endurance runners and others following prolonged exercise. Serious athletes that undergo frequent, strenuous workouts may want to take a supplement containing proline in order to prevent loosing lean muscle mass in the process. This is because it is a known fact that the body begins to cannibalize its muscle for energy when glucose supplies run low.

Proline assists in the body's task of breaking down proteins for use in creating healthy cells in the body. It is absolutely necessary to the development and maintenance of healthy skin and connective tissues, especially at the site of traumatic tissue injury. Proline and lysine (an amino acid which we carry in our inventory as well that is critical to protein synthesis) are both required to make hydroxyproline and hydroxylysine, two amino acids that form collagen. Collagen helps to heal cartilage and to bolster the joints and vertebrae. For this reason, proline supplementation may prove helpful in treating conditions such as osteoarthritis, persistent soft tissue strains, and chronic back pain.

Depending upon individual needs, the commonly recommended dose for L-Proline varies between as little as 500 milligrams to as much as 5 grams daily in divided doses between meals, in combination with vitamin C. A level 1/2 teaspoon of this pure bulk L-Proline powder is approximately 1213 milligrams. Taking 1/2 level teaspoon three times per day will yield a total daily dose of approximately 3.6 grams. You may want to adjust your dose higher or lower to suit your individual needs.

Possible Side effects / Precautions / Possible Interactions:
There are no known side effects or symptoms of overuse of L-Proline published in the scientific, clinical or medical literature. However, people with liver or kidney disease should not take this or any other amino acid supplement without first consulting their physician.

Research studies / References

arw http://pubchem.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/summary/summary.cgi?cid=614&loc=ec_rcs

arw Lehninger, Albert L.; Nelson, David L.; Cox, Michael M. (2000), Principles of Biochemistry (3rd ed.), New York: W. H. Freeman, ISBN 1-57259-153-6.

arw Jones, Barbara J.; Vergne, Matthew J.; Bunk, David M.; Locascio, Laurie E.; Hayes, Mark A. (2007), "Cleavage of Peptides and Proteins Using Light-Generated Radicals from Titanium Dioxide", Anal. Chem. 79 (4): 1327-32, doi:10.1021/ac0613737, PMID 17297930

arw Pavlov, Michael Y; Watts, Richard E; Tan, Zhongping; Cornish, Virginia W; Forster, MÃ¥ns (2010), "Slow peptide bond formation by proline and other N-alkylamino acids in translation", PNAS 106 (1): 50-54, doi:10.1073/pnas.0809211106, PMID 19104062.

arw K.J. Siebert, "Haze and Foam", <http://www.nysaes.cornell.edu/fst/faculty/siebert/haze.html> Accessed July 12, 2010