‘This ingredient is upstaging the gold-standard’: ING2 co-founder on excitement around dileucine

By Stephen Daniells

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags dileucine Muscle protein synthesis Sports nutrition muscle building sarcopenia

A “groundbreaking” dileucine ingredient that boosts muscle protein synthesis much faster and to a greater extent that leucine, ‘the gold-standard’ amino acid for muscle, will hit shelves in a consumer product , the co-founder of Ingenious Ingredients (ING2) tells us.

As reported by NutraIngredients-USA​, the company’s dileucine ingredient – branded RAMPS (Rapid Action Muscle Protein Synthesis) – was the subject of a paper published in the Journal of Applied Physiology​, which reported that young men who consumed dileucine had significantly more muscle synthesis than men who ingested only leucine.

“When we talk about leucine, this has been the gold-standard for onset of muscle protein synthesis, meaning anabolism, meaning the creation or maintenance of muscle. Obviously, this is important to body building but also sarcopenia, cachexia, these conditions where we’re losing muscle or where muscle is of great clinical importance,”​ said Shawn Wells, who co-founded ING2 in 2018 with Ralf Jaeger, Martin Purpura, and Kylin Liao.  

“We’re very excited about this ingredient, which is upstaging the gold-standard for the last hundred years,” ​Wells told NutraIngredients-USA at the recent SupplySide West in Las Vegas. 

Wells explained that the company was exploring the potential of the PEPT1 transporter in the gut, a transporter that preferentially chooses di- and tri- peptides over single amino acids.

“The thought was, ‘OK, leucine turns on muscle protein synthesis and it’s not about the amount of leucine that you orally consume, it’s about how quickly it goes up in the plasma’. The idea was to do a di- or tri-peptide of leucine and would it be better than leucine itself? And that’s what we saw, and that’s groundbreaking.”

“Gram for gram, we’re seeing it be 60-80% better at muscle protein synthesis than leucine. We’re seeing it increase 186% faster. So, you’re getting muscle protein synthesis happening faster, you’re getting greater muscle protein synthesis, and what’s really interesting is we’re getting intact dileucine in the plasma, 1) from it being absorbed that way and 2) free leucine is being put together to make dileucine. The body doesn’t waste energy for no reason. So now we’re exploring, what if it’s not really leucine, what if it is dileucine that’s driving all of this?”

Path to market

So, when will we see products on shelves with the ingredient? Wells said that ING2 has chosen an exclusive partner to launch with, following a similar approach to the market as it did for its enfinity​ paraxanthine ingredient, a caffeine metabolite, which recently launched in pre-workout products from Iovate Health Sciences-brand MuscleTech.

“This [RAMPS] is kind of the same situation where we’re going to work with a unique partner to co-brand this, to position this, to launch it in the right way, work on studies together, and then in about a year we will go with a distributor to take this ingredient broader,” ​he said.

Watch the video for more information and to hear about what’s next in the ING2 pipeline…

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