Thursday, 19 March 2015

What is Epicatechin? - PPMD Community

What is Epicatechin? - PPMD Community: "Epicatechin is a flavonoid found in dark chocolate harvested from the cacao tree. What’s that got to do with Duchenne? Epicatechin is one of dozens of flavonoids found in dark chocolate, but it is unique with respect to its effects on muscle and heart. Epicatechin has been demonstrated in animals and humans to increase the production of new mitochondria in heart and muscle (termed “mitochondrial biogenesis”) while concurrently stimulating the regeneration of muscle tissue. The progression of muscle weakness in Duchenne muscular dystrophy is associated with a loss of mitochondria, which power the skeletal muscle. Recent evidence indicates that Epicatechin is acting as a mimic of a newly discovered human hormone released by normal muscles after exercise that may be responsible for mitochondria biogenesis and stronger muscle fibers that occur normally after exercise training. Other closely related flavonoids in chocolate either have no effect or are actually inhibitory to mitochondrial biogenesis. Thus use of extracts of cacao or non-pharmaceutical grade Epicatechin may be ineffective. The current studies in muscular dystrophy are being conducted with pharmaceutical grade Epicatechin, free of any other flavonoids or contaminants. There is a trial in Europe evaluating a related compound, epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG) for its anti-oxidant effects in muscular dystrophy. ECGC has none of the mitochondrial or muscle effects that has been observed for Epicatechin, because it is the wrong shape to mimic the human hormone."

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