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Do HGH Peptides Actually Work? | A Comprehensive Review

Curious about HGH peptides?

This promising class of compounds is the subject of many studies that indicate numerous therapeutic benefits. In this ultimate guide, we detail all you need to know about these popular research peptides.

We’ll explain:

HGH (Human Growth Hormone), also known as GH or somatropin, is a naturally occurring hormone produced by the pituitary gland. It is vital to proper physical development from infancy to adulthood, regulating the growth of bone and other tissues. HGH remains important in adulthood for its role in various metabolic functions [1, 2, 3]. These include:

HGH levels naturally decline with age starting around 30 in healthy individuals, sometimes leading to:

Pathologically low levels of HGH are diagnosed as GH deficiency (GHD). This condition presents a range of symptoms in both adults and children and is attributable to various causes, to be discussed below. Among the symptoms of GHD are [4]:

Synthetic HGH (rhGH) is a long-standing, FDA-approved treatment for numerous conditions in GH-deficient children and adults, such as [5, 6]:

Beyond this, the evidenced therapeutic potentials of HGH therapy in both diagnosed GH-deficient and undiagnosed adults include [6, 7]:

While HGH is vital to overall health, rhGH is used in medical settings to counter the effects of insufficient GH levels and exhibits many therapeutic applications in research to date.

Peptide therapy is an emergent pharmaceutical area that has recently captured the interest of leading clinical researchers around the world. Peptides are bioactive compounds naturally present in the body that are vital to many physiological functions. Ongoing studies have revealed the healing potential of synthetic peptides in a range of diverse contexts.

Composed of amino acid chains, there are over 13,000 distinct organic peptides and approximately 1 × 1013 synthetic ones [8]. Both types are classed by their structure (cyclic or linear) or molecular weight, which governs oral availability [9].

The practice of peptide therapy involves the application of either organic or synthetic peptides in medical contexts. Peptides may be developed into medical products called peptide therapeutics or peptide-based drugs, both of which harness the power of peptides to increase the bioavailability, potency, and efficacy of medical preparations [8, 9, 10].

Peptides have demonstrated therapeutic potential in a growing number of clinical areas, such as:

Though there is a relative lack of long-term data on peptide administration in human subjects due to the novelty of the field, the vast majority of therapeutic peptides and derived products are known to have favorable safety profiles when properly handled in clinical settings [18, 19, 20, 21].

Peptides that alter levels of human growth hormone have been closely studied for the treatment of numerous diseases, such as GH deficiency, genetic disorders, renal failure, and HIV/AIDS-related muscular degeneration [22, 23]. 

Further clinical and therapeutic applications of HGH peptides include the treatment of cardiovascular and inflammatory diseases, improved sexual health, better athletic performance, and enhanced injury recovery. HGH peptides are also documented to have anti-aging effects [24]. 

Peptides used in HGH peptide therapy are classed as either synthetic analogs of growth hormone-releasing hormone (GHRH analogs) or synthetic growth hormone secretagogues (also known as growth hormone-releasing peptides or GHRPs). Both increase endogenous HGH levels to various therapeutic effects. Let’s briefly explore each [25].

Synthetic growth hormone-releasing hormone (GHRH) is structurally distinct from endogenous growth hormone-releasing hormone and has been evidenced for decades to act synergistically with its parent hormone for increased GH output. GHRH peptides such as sermorelin may be modified for greater stability, potency, and bioavailability than endogenous GHRH [26].

In contrast, synthetic growth hormone secretagogues (GHRPs) act not upon the GHRH receptor, but on the growth hormone secretagogue receptor (GHS-R), also known as the ghrelin receptor, increasing GH release through alternate means. Early GH secretagogues include MK-677, a selective ghrelin agonist that is still prized among clinicians for its oral bioavailability and highly targeted GH release [26, 27].

With so many HGH secretagogues and peptides on the market, the topic at hand can be confusing.

To make things simple…

These are the most popular HGH peptides among leading researchers at present:

Read on to learn more about HGH peptide therapy, including the causes of GH deficiency, the specific benefits of top HGH peptides, and the best practices to employ when handling peptides in your research. 

Plus, we will direct you to your best online HGH peptide source.

The pathological condition of low human growth hormone, known as growth hormone deficiency (GHD), arises when the pituitary gland fails to produce enough growth hormone. This condition may be extant at birth (congenital) or arise at a later age (acquired) [28].

Cases of GHD in both children and adults are attributed to a range of causes, and in some cases, the cause is unknown (idiopathic). Symptoms, treatments, and prognoses vary with cause and age of onset. Diagnoses are issued after extensive testing by qualified endocrinologists. Here, we will explore the common causes and associated symptoms of GHD [28].

The incidence of GHD in children is often attributed to genetic or idiopathic origins. It can also be caused by damage to the pituitary gland or hypothalamus before, during, or after birth.

This damage may be elicited by head injury, radiation, a brain tumor, or an autoimmune condition known as lymphocytic hypophysitis.

Congenital GHD may present symptoms in infancy or later in childhood. Typical symptoms of pediatric GHD are slowed growth resulting in a small stature and immature appearance, delayed puberty, adiposity, and deficient hair growth. Additional complications include fatigue, low bone density, and increased cardiovascular risk. Diminished levels of HGH in children normally continue into adulthood [4, 29, 30, 31]. 

Adult-onset GHD is most often caused by pituitary damage due to tumors, brain surgery, or radiotherapy. Additional causes of pituitary damage resulting in GHD include head trauma and infection, such as meningitis or hemorrhagic fever. It has also been linked with autoimmune diseases and interrupted blood supply to the pituitary gland [4, 32].

Symptoms of acquired GHD in adults include weakened bone and muscle, cognitive decline, fatigue, insulin resistance, adiposity, and increased cardiovascular risk. It can also cause anxiety and depression [4, 32].

Even in individuals without GHD, levels of GH are subject to naturally decline with age. This can present undesirable effects such as fatigue, weight gain, and diminished sexual health [22, 23].

Although different types of compounds, HGH peptides, and HGH have many commonalities in their clinical outcomes. They also have unique benefits.

Here, we will explore the key differences and similarities between the two:

1. Structure [33]

2. Function [33, 34]

3. Therapeutic applications [33, 34, 35, 36, 37]

4. Side effects [34, 36, 37, 38, 39]

5. Cost [40, 41, 42, 43]

1. Structure [33]

2. Function [33, 43]

3. Therapeutic applications [33, 44]

4. Side effects [33, 34, 38, 45]

In summation, HGH peptides and HGH share many features and therapeutic benefits. The most notable difference between the two is the higher cost of HGH.

The benefits of HGH peptide therapy significantly overlap with exogenous GH therapy.

Shared areas of clinical impact and therapeutic potential include the following:

Ongoing research indicates further benefits of HGH peptides that may exceed the scope of traditional HGH treatments. These are primarily due to the enhancement of HGH’s anabolic effects through advances in peptide therapy [6, 7, 36, 37, 46, 47, 48, 49].

As mentioned above, HGH peptides may outperform exogenous HGH in some respects due to their stimulation of endogenous GH secretion. The natural release of GH enables the brain to maintain homeostasis in contrast to the potentially disruptive process of flooding the system with synthetic GH.

Adverse effects of synthetic GH therapy can include pituitary damage and endocrine interference, as elevated levels of exogenous GH have been shown in some cases to suppress the pituitary gland, leading to the erosion of pituitary function. Alternately, the stimulation of endogenous GH release through peptide therapy enables pulsatile timing in coordination with the body’s natural feedback mechanisms [36, 37].

Further, multiple HGH peptides may be safely applied in combination to enhance their effects in qualified settings [36, 37, 50].

In sum, HGH peptides share most of the primary benefits of rhGH. Many exhibit further potential due to their specificity, versatility, and synergy with natural physiological processes. Ongoing studies are sure to add to the growing number of therapeutic applications of HGH peptides.

We have combed the latest peer-reviewed studies to rank the best growth hormone peptides. These are overall some of the top peptides for muscle growth and weight loss, each proffering distinct additional benefits in clinical trials. Here, we will break down the essentials of these exciting compounds, including their structures, documented therapeutic potentials, and ongoing areas of study.

Ipamorelin is a potent growth hormone secretagogue and ghrelin agonist that is prized for its highly targeted effect on the pituitary gland. A         derivative of GHRP-1, this synthetic pentapeptide was the earliest known GH secretagogue to achieve selective GH release [51, 52].

Since its development over 20 years ago, it has been the subject of numerous clinical studies. Application in animal models indicates its effectiveness in combating muscle catabolism due to glucocorticoid use. It has also been shown to stimulate significant growth in many types of tissue, including bone, muscle, and vasculature while improving sleep [36, 53, 54, 55].

Further animal studies suggest that it may dramatically enhance cartilage regeneration (chondrogenesis), affecting better joint health as well as anti-aging benefits. It is theorized to achieve chondrogenesis through the regulation of collagen-specific genes or stem cell enhancement [48, 56].

Although significant data on ipamorelin administration in human subjects is pending further research, it generally retains a favorable safety profile, both well-tolerated and without significant side effects in clinical trials [36, 57].

Hexarelin, also known as examorelin and HEX is a synthetic growth hormone secretagogue and agonist of the ghrelin/growth hormone secretagogue receptor (GHSR).

The hexapeptide is structurally similar to its parent hormone, ghrelin, although slightly modified for greater potency, stability, and tolerability. It has been shown to significantly increase GH levels with additional GH-independent effects. Although it is classed as a ghrelin analog with targeted GHS-r stimulus, it is considered a multi-receptor peptide, evidenced in human and animal studies to stimulate the release of not only GH, but to a lesser degree prolactin, cortisol, and other vital hormones [58, 59].

Specifical areas of clinical impact in hexarelin administration are attributable to its potency as a GHRP, as well as its GH-independent behaviors. Its targeted GH release is shown to improve physical composition and athletic performance. Meanwhile, its most prominent benefit is its apparent cardioprotective effect, theorized to be a GH-independent function [60]. It also shows promise as a sleep aid and treatment for certain endocrine and genetic disorders in addition to GHD [36, 58, 61, 62].

Hexarelin has a positive safety profile to date when properly administered in clinical settings [36, 63].

Sermorelin, also known as sermorelin acetate, is a synthetic GHRH analog. The 29-amino acid peptide is a fragment of its parent hormone, which consists of 44 amino acids. It was marketed under FDA approval until 2008 to diagnose and treat GHD in both adults and children, withdrawn for reasons unrelated to safety or effectiveness [64, 65, 66].

A highly effective somatropin agonist, sermorelin is evidenced to have great therapeutic potential in addition to its proven efficacy as a GHD treatment. In both human and animal

studies, it has been shown to increase lean muscle mass for improved body composition, and it shows promise as a treatment for the symptoms of male hypogonadism. Further research suggests that it can improve cardiovascular and metabolic health and elicit anti-aging effects [67, 68, 69, 70, 71].

Having undergone extensive analysis before FDA approval, sermorelin has a verifiably outstanding safety profile.

CJC-1295 DAC is a synthetic GHRH analog that is known for its long half-life and extended efficacy due to its selective binding with blood albumen. Studies have shown that it not only releases GH but uniquely sustains high GH levels in the bloodstream when properly administered. The suffix DAC designates that the 29 amino acid CJC-1295 has been modified via the bioconjugation platform known as Drug Affinity Complex for enhanced duration and effectiveness [72, 73, 74].

In both human and animal studies, the administration of this peptide has been evidenced to improve body composition, strengthen bones, and boost metabolic health. It is also under analysis as a GHD treatment in both children and adults [72, 75].

This compound maintains a positive safety profile, with few severe side effects noted in human trials [72, 74].

GHRP-2, also known as pralmorelin, is a synthetic growth hormone secretagogue that closely mimics the effects of ghrelin, its parent compound. Among the earliest synthetic growth hormone secretagogues to be developed, this hexapeptide has been heavily studied for a range of therapeutic applications. It is currently marketed as a diagnostic peptide for GH deficiency.

The primary benefits of GHRP-2 administration are improved metabolic health, affecting lean muscle growth, as well as enhanced immune response, appetite, and sleep. Research also suggests that it has cardioprotective and anti-inflammatory benefits with the potential to treat diseases such as arthritis and fibrosis. It has additionally been proven to address the symptoms of growth hormone deficiency in children and adults.

GHRP-2 is suited to both oral and parenteral administration with minimal evidenced side effects [36 44, 67, 77].

GHRP-6, also known as growth hormone-releasing hexapeptide, is another early synthetic GHRP, acting on the pituitary for selective GH release [36, 44, 67, 78].

Like GHRP-2, it is known to have broad anti-inflammatory and cardioprotective effects, contributing to metabolic and cardiovascular health while modulating the immune response. Other shared benefits include improvements in appetite and sleep quality. It has been shown in animal studies to have neuroprotective effects, boosting cognitive health and countering the symptoms of stroke and Parkinson’s disease. Further studies suggest that it may have therapeutic potential to treat low sex drive, particularly in male subjects [79, 80, 81].

GHRP-6 to date has a positive safety profile and may be administered via oral (sublingual) or parenteral routes [36].

As this topic can be confusing, our research team wanted to make things as simple as possible for you…

When it comes to choosing the best HGH peptide for your research, you have an excellent selection to consider. All six of our most recommended HGH peptides have been shown to increase endogenous GH release, affecting many of the same outcomes as traditional GH therapy. Plus, each is evidenced to have unique therapeutic potential.

The ranking of these peptides is challenging, as they each have well-documented strengths and nuanced differences. All would make great additions to broad research into HGH peptides.

Familiarize yourself with our selection and consider these questions when choosing your HGH peptide:

For example, ipamorelin has decades of research to back its targeted GH release and tolerability. However, the remaining peptides have distinct features that may be more suitable for your research.

Sermorelin, having undergone full FDA approval, has an outstanding safety profile. It is also a GHRH agonist, stimulating a different receptor within the GH axis from the GHS analogs ipamorelin, hexarelin, and GHRP.

Another GHRH agonist, CJC-1295 DAC is a great choice if longevity is your interest. Meanwhile, GHRP-2 and GHRP-6 are of particular interest for their potency and cardioprotective effects.

Many researchers advocate the synergistic combination of GHRPs and GHRH analogs. Choose wisely based on the strengths applicable to your research!

After selecting your peptide, proper sourcing and handling are crucial. Purchase peptides strictly from reputable vendors and follow expert guidelines on dosing, storage, and administration. This will require you to inform yourself of the latest pertinent peer-reviewed literature on your chosen peptide.

Read on for further information on HGH peptide purchase, materials, and handling.

Our review of best practices when handling HGH peptides would be incomplete without guidelines on standard administration supplies and methods. When it comes to optimal rates of diffusion and bioavailability in HGH peptide delivery, subcutaneous injection is widely considered the best route.

While specific peptide administration dosages and schedules may vary, HGH injections are typically performed shortly before bedtime to complement the body’s natural rates of endogenous GH release. HGH peptides are often sold in the form of lyophilized powder, requiring reconstitution with a sterile solvent before subcutaneous injection.

Leading researchers agree that bacteriostatic water is the ideal solvent for HGH peptide reconstitution due to its organic preservative agent that reduces the risk of contamination and extends the shelf-life of peptide solutions.

In addition to bacteriostatic water, you will need a few standard lab supplies. At a minimum, you should be equipped with:

To reconstitute the HGH peptide before injection, follow this method:

If you are unsure of where to purchase the necessary materials, don’t worry. We have a recommendation for that, too!

Check out:

This reputable online vendor offers not only bacteriostatic water but the full set of supplies you need for HGH peptide reconstitution. All supplies are available in convenient research kits.

The starter kit has:

The premium kit delivers:

Ensure success in your HGH peptide research with a premium supply set.

Below are answers to some common questions about HGH peptides…

Yes, when properly administered in qualified settings, HGH peptides have been proven to have a range of therapeutic effects in both human and animal trials. From treating symptoms of GH deficiency to improving overall cardiovascular, metabolic, and sexual health, HGH peptides are backed by decades of clinical research to support their efficacy and tolerability.

In considering the top HGH peptides, all are exceptional in their own ways, offering nuanced benefits. Whether your principal area of clinical impact is better sleep, anti-aging, or increased muscle mass, you may find that one of our top six recommended peptides is better suited to your research than the rest. Familiarize yourself with the unique strengths of each, as well as the potential synergistic benefits of combined use.

This is highly dependent on the course of therapy. Within the first 8 weeks of administration by qualified practitioners, many subjects experience marked improvements in sleep, physical performance, energy levels, and skin elasticity. Courses of therapy may require up to 9 months to reach optimal benefits.

For research purposes, there is no prescription required to purchase most HGH peptides within the USA. Be sure to purchase from trusted sources that offer quality guarantees including purity testing from third-party labs. Individuals who are personally considering undergoing HGH peptide therapy are strongly advised to consult medical professionals for the safety and efficacy of treatment.

Certain HGH peptides like tesamorelin currently hold FDA approval for a very limited use. The vast majority, however, cannot be marketed for therapeutic use in humans. Peptides sold online are non-prescription and uncontrolled substances, legal for purchase, sale, and handling strictly for research purposes in qualified settings. The marketing of HGH peptides as medicinal products in the USA is illegal and subject to legal sanctions. However, ongoing research may lead to changes in the legal status of many peptides in the future [82].

This concludes our ultimate guide on HGH peptides.

HGH is vital to human growth, development, and lifelong health. Unfortunately, many suffer from insufficient levels of pituitary GH output, associated with symptoms from stunted growth in children to sexual dysfunction, fatigue, and weight gain in adults.

The novel field of HGH peptide therapy presents promising avenues for the safe treatment of low growth hormone levels. Innovative studies show the potential of synthetic GHRH analogs and GHRPs to not only address known symptoms of low GH but provide additional benefits with few known side effects.

Within the burgeoning arena of peptide research, HGH peptides are surely one of the most exciting topics to date.

Incorporate HGH peptides like ipamorelin into your research with the purchase of world-class products from our recommended supplier.

This is sponsored content. M&F is not endorsing the websites or products listed in this article.


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