Background & aims: It has been speculated that the amount of leucine in a meal largely determines the post-prandial muscle protein synthetic response to food intake. The present study investigates the impact of leucine co-ingestion on subsequent post-prandial muscle protein accretion following the ingestion of a single bolus of dietary protein in elderly males.
Methods: Twenty-four elderly men (74.3 +/- 1.0 y) were randomly assigned to ingest 20 g intrinsically L-[1-C-13]phenylalanine-labeled casein protein with (PRO + LEU) or without (PRO) 2.5 g crystalline leucine. Ingestion of specifically produced intrinsically labeled protein allowed us to create a plasma phenylalanine enrichment pattern similar to the absorption pattern of phenylalanine from the ingested protein and assess the subsequent post-prandial incorporation of L-[1-C-13] phenylalanine into muscle protein.
Results: Plasma amino acid concentrations increased rapidly following protein ingestion in both groups, with higher leucine concentrations observed in the PRO + LEU compared with the PRO group (P <0.01). Plasma L-[1-C-13]phenylalanine enrichments increased rapidly and to a similar extent in both groups following protein ingestion. Muscle protein-bound L-[1-C-13]phenylalanine enrichments were significantly greater after PRO + LEU when compared with PRO at 2 h (72%; 0.0078 +/- 0.0010 vs. 0.0046 +/- 0.00100 MPE, respectively; P <0.05) and 6 h (25%; 0.0232 +/- 0.0015 vs. 0.0185 +/- 0.0010 MPE, respectively; P <0.05) following protein ingestion. The latter translated into a greater muscle protein synthetic rate following PRO + LEU compared with PRO over the entire 6 h post-prandial period (22%; 0.049 +/- 0.003 vs. 0.040 +/- 0.003% h(-1), respectively; P <0.05).
Conclusion: Leucine co-ingestion with a bolus of pure dietary protein further stimulates post-prandial muscle protein synthesis rates in elderly men.
- Skeletal muscle
- Amino acids
- Anabolic resistance
- INTRINSICALLY LABELED MILK
- HUMAN-NUTRITION RESEARCH
- HUMAN SKELETAL-MUSCLE
- TYPE-2 DIABETIC MEN
- BETA-CELL FUNCTION