Selective Androgen Receptor Modulators (SAMRs) are an extremely innovative type of drug that have drawn a lot of attention in the medical research world. Androgen receptors (AR) are responsible for the regulation of certain activities in the body and are generally triggered by hormones.
Traditional hormone drugs using testosterone and anabolic steroids result in binding to receptors throughout the body triggering far more receptors than actually wanted.
SARMs, as their name suggests, are extremely selective. The synthetic drugs bind only to very specific ARs in the body. Among those are triggers that increase the production of human Growth Hormone (GH) in bones and muscles.
Numerous studies have been performed with many different types of SARM drugs to identify exactly how they work and what their side effects are. So far, the selectiveness of the dugs is showing very promising uses, especially when aimed at muscle and bone tissue production.
To help you understand the clinical studies better, this guide will highlight some of the most important findings providing some insights into future testing and possible expanded studies.
What Affects Growth Hormone Production
Human growth hormone is a very natural part of the body function. Certain activities, illnesses and injuries can trigger both positive and negative effects on the release. As already mentioned, this hormone is responsible for gene expression in different parts of the body.
The result is that certain organs, muscles and bones then go into increased or decreased tissue development.
A lack of growth hormone production can have very serious effects on the body as the structure of bones and muscles can quickly diminish. Muscle wasting is an example where gradually muscles reduce in size. This can happen through disease or old age.
Traditionally hormone treatments were very aggressive and triggered the release of GH all over the body. However, synthetic drugs like SARMs are being developed to only target GH release in specific areas like bones and muscles.
What Studies Have Shown
When it comes to growth hormone triggers there have been many different but similar drugs in testing phases. SARMs have shown the most positive results due to their very limited and often complete lack of negative side effects.
In this section we’ll provide some high level information about 3 studies that have been conducted with carefully planned and executed clinical processes. To make it easier to understand the results, we have removed all scientific and medical jargon.
Study 1 Results
Preclinical Research and Development, GTx, Inc conducted extensive research in 2008 to provide some conclusive evidence of how SARMs outperform other hormone treatments, especially due to the absence of negative effects.
This wasn’t a clinical study in and of itself, but a very extensive collection of test results from other clinical trials. The result is one of the most comprehensive research documents that highlights how SARMs are particularly effective at triggering ARs in skeletal muscles and bones.
Osteoporosis (brittle bones) and muscle wasting are challenging conditions to treat medically, which makes these research results especially interesting.
The very consistent release of human growth hormone under constant dosage was also noted as a benefit for treatment options. The better the consistency of a drug is, the more suitable it is for treating various diseases.
The most important conclusion of the scientists is that SARMs will provide a significant shift in treatment options for patients requiring anabolic stimulants. While there are still significant challenges ahead for clinical trials and regulatory approval, the test results simply cannot be ignored.
Study 2 Results
The Swedish Research Centre for Endocrinology and Metabolism conducted a clinical study in the late 90s on the effects of SARMs on obese men. One of the common factors in obesity is reduced GH production. The result is excessive amounts of fat being stored rather than processed for bone and muscle production.
Using a double blind and placebo approach 24 men were given MK677 on a daily basis for 8 weeks. The dosages were also altered throughout the study to identify specific effects.
The results were actually very positive indeed. Insulin like growth factor 1 (IGF1) increased on average by 40%!
The ultimate result was a significant increase in fat free lean mass while fat storage decreased. The conclusion was that the overall changes in the test subject’s bodies was due to anabolic effects.
What wasn’t explored is the long term treatment effects beyond 8 weeks. This could identify side effects currently not known, or possibly result in tolerance building up. Overall it was a very positive result with very little effects on cortisol levels.
Study 3 Results
The final study we want to highlight was conducted by the University of Virginia, which aimed at observing the impacts of growth hormone inducing drugs on healthy elderly people. Using MK677 this was the first longer term study running for 2 years in a double blind and placebo controlled set up.
Both men and women were used in an age range from 65 to 81 who were overall healthy. In 2008 the positive benefits on GH production were already well documented, so this study was designed to observe and analyse any negative side effects.
Both GH and IGF1 levels, along with body mass and fat storage were the focus points for taking measurements. The results after 12 and 24 months were very positive.
The drug was well tolerated and no significant and consistent side effects were noted. On the positive side, the study also showed a very significant increase in GH and IGF1 with body fat reducing in all test subjects exposed to the drug.
Since the 90s SARMS have been progressively becoming more interesting to the field of medical science. Multiple studies have shown a huge impact on growth hormone production with none of the common and severe side effects of other hormone treatments.
The above three studies are the most conclusive and show extensive results building a foundation for further long term studies using different dosages. There are great opportunities for advanced stage testing to work towards an approved drug.