Enzyme Mix May Cause Whey Amino Acid Absorption Faster After Exercise: Study

Data published in Sportsalso reported that co-ingesting the mixture of proteases and whey protein led to higher levels of branched chain amino acids (BCAAs) and essential amino acids (EAA) at 30 and 180 minutes.

“The results of this study suggest that adding a proprietary blend of protease enzymes to whey protein results in earlier and more pronounced amino acidemia in resistance-trained men compared to a control drink, while the whey was not different from the control at that time (30 min) ”, wrote scientists from Lipscomb University, Colorado State University, and Kennesaw State University.


The study used the Prohydrolase Enzyme Protease blend from Deerland Enzymes (Kennesaw, GA), and the company funded the study.

Commenting on the new study, Dr John Deaton, vice president of science and technology at Deerland, said: “The enzyme blend potentiates the powder’s ability to protect and improve muscle structure, especially after vigorous workouts. Without ProHydolase, whey or other protein powders may not be used optimally by the body.

“More and more people are getting active and using protein, whey, or herbal powders for the sole purpose of feeding their muscles. ProHydrolase is, without a doubt, a powerful and perfect protein partner.

Study details

Ten resistance-trained men were recruited to participate in the double-blind study. All of the men performed four sets of 8-10 reps in the leg press and extension exercises, then consumed 250 mg of prohydrolase + 26 grams of whey protein, or 26 grams of whey protein alone, or a non-nutritive control. Blood samples and muscle biopsies were taken at specific time intervals after exercise.

The results showed that while there were no significant differences between the combined group and the whey protein-only group for overall plasma leucine, BCAA, and EAA levels, more absorption rapid was noted in the combined group, compared to whey alone. Specifically, 30 minutes after exercise, the combined group showed significant increases in leucine (33% increase), all BCAAs (32%) and essential amino acids (29%), compared to those from the group of whey proteins alone. These remained elevated 180 minutes after ingestion.

“Although there were no differences in the AUC [area under the curve] between the protein supplement groups, faster absorption of leucine, BCAAs and EAAs may indicate improved digestion and absorption during this initial window after ingestion ”, write the researchers. “Although outside the scope of this study, a practical application of protease supplementation may be to improve protein digestion before or during training, thus, athletes may benefit from future investigations regarding the timing of. protease supplementation with whey or other protein mixtures. “

There were also no differences observed between the combined group and the whey alone group for a range of anabolic signaling proteins, including AKT, mTOR, p70S6K, JNK, ERK 1/2, p38, and NFKB.

“Future work on protease supplementation with other types of protein (eg, casein, pea, soy), which are limited by digestion and absorption compared to whey, would provide additional information to athletes regarding the practical benefits of protease supplementation. ” the researchers concluded.

Source: Sports
2020, 8(2), 13; do I: 10.3390 / sport8020013
“The effect of prohydrolase on the response of amino acids and intramuscular anabolic signaling to resistance exercise in trained men”
Authors: JR Townsend et al.

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