Unlike most peptides, which have been proven to be effective only via administration by injection, there are lingering questions surrounding the bioavailability and efficacy of BPC-157 when administered orally.
As it has been observed to have a more localized, proximate healing effect, it has been hypothesized that BPC-157 may have a substantial beneficial impact when administered orally on injuries suffered in the gastrointestinal system.
Further, as other studies have illuminated the peptide’s positive impact on healing regarding the “brain-gut” axis, regenerative effects resulting from the oral route have also been hypothesized to extend to neuroprotection and healing as well.
But can it still be effective in healing musculoskeletal injuries when given orally?
To date, several clinical studies conducted using rat test subjects have observed the effects of both parenteral administration (injection) of BPC-157 as well as oral administration.
Generally, these studies have yielded promising results, with oral administration observed to be significantly effective.
For example, oral delivery has been observed to provide measurable neuroprotective effects in rat test subjects exposed to cuprizone (a neurotoxin). Likewise, ancillary research suggests that the peptide’s influence in the brain-gut axis may be responsible for these benefits as well.
It is important to note that at this time, studies have only been conducted using rodent subjects and not performance animals like greyhounds or horses.
However, to be clear, several clinical studies have given strong evidence for the efficacy of BPC-157 when administered orally.
What's more, the healing effects seen with oral administration in these studies have been observed to be comparable to those attained when given by injection.
Certainly, this suggests that adequate bioavailability can in fact be achieved through an oral dose.
With this in mind, let's take a look at several specific studies that offer compelling evidence for the effectiveness of oral administration.
In a 2010 study published in the Journal of Orthopaedic Research, researchers concluded that BPC-157 was able to enhance healing of medial collateral ligament (MCL) injuries in rodent subjects.
In the study, the peptide was administered in 3 different ways: via injection, topically, and orally through drinking water. Throughout the 90 day study duration, researchers found that body protection compound substantially improved biomechanical, histological, and functional recovery of the injured ligament.
Importantly, it was also observed that these healing benefits were attained regardless of the method of administration.
This led the researchers to conclude that BPC-157 oral delivery was indeed effective in this case.
A study conducted the following year demonstrated powerful healing and protective effects in combating toxicity induced by non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs). Again, these recuperative benefits were observed with both oral dosing and injection.
Published in Life Sciences in 2011, the study aimed to use BPC-157 to reverse and protect against toxic effects caused by overuse of NSAIDs in rat test subjects. Specifically, researchers looked to counteract lesions and toxicity occurring in the brain, liver, and gastrointestinal system.
Following the study’s conclusion, researchers observed the peptide to be “strongly effective” throughout the entire duration of the experiment, noting the extreme differences in the control group receiving no treatment, including severe lesions, increased liver enzymes (ALT and AST), and brain edema (hepatic encephalopathy).
Importantly, the researchers found oral dosing of BPC-157 to be comparably effective to parenteral administration here as well.
In 2013, a study published in Medical Science Monitor Basic Research provided strong evidence for the effectiveness of BPC-157 oral dosing to enhance the healing of injured muscle tissue in rodents.
Noting the peptide’s ability to stimulate healing of damaged smooth and striated muscle tissue in the gastrointestinal system, researchers aimed to observe body protection compound’s healing effect in treating stress urinary incontinence in female rat test subjects caused by transabdominal urethrolysis and sustained vaginal dilatation. Over 7 days, the peptide was administered either orally or by injection, with control groups receiving no treatment.
Researchers found that in each group given BPC-157, healing was significantly enhanced, with improvements in recovery to damaged muscle tissue noted irrespective of the method of administration.
The conclusions of this study, as well as those mentioned previously, clearly offer powerful evidence for the effectiveness of oral dosages (albeit in rodent test subjects). While far from proving that these findings can be extrapolated to apply to performance animals, these studies nonetheless provide a convincing argument that oral dosing for BPC-157 can indeed be effective.
For now, the general practice of administering the peptide by subcutaneous or intramuscular injection remains the most prevalent method of administration. Studies have consistently proven this method to work, especially when the more localized healing effects of body protection compound are taken into account.
Still, the efficacy of oral administration for this specific peptide remains promising, particularly when considering its recuperative effects on gastrointestinal, neurological, muscular, and connective tissue injuries.
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