Caffeine and Lactate Supplements Increase Muscle Mass (Continued)

Satellite cells are essential for muscle growth to take place; they lay dormant until activated to form new muscle fibers. The researchers looked at the impact of lactate and caffeine first in test tubes and then in animal studies (i.e. in vivo). First, the researchers found that when they mixed the lactate and caffeine in test tubes and mixed them with growth factors that lactate significantly increased myogenin and follistatin protein levels and phosphorylation of P70S6K (i.e. all three are growth promoters) while decreasing the levels of the muscle growth inhibitor myostatin relative to the control. Lactate and caffeine combination significantly increased the anabolic protein cellular pathways Pax7, MyoD and Ki67 in addition to myogenin, relative to controls. Lactate and caffeine combination also significantly increased anabolic signaling pathway follistatin expression relative to controls and stimulated the anabolic signaling pathway mTOR and P70S6K.

When the researchers examined the powerful combination when administered to male rats, they found similar increases in the anabolic signaling pathways. In an in vivo study, male rats were assigned to the control, exercise and lactate and caffeine supplementation groups. Lactate and caffeine was orally administered daily. The lactate and caffeine exercise group and exercise only groups were exercised on a treadmill, running for 30 minutes at low intensity every other day for 4 weeks. The lactate and caffeine exercise group experienced a significant increase in the mass of the lower leg muscle groups gastrocnemius (GA) and tibialis anterior (TA) relative to both the sedentary and exercise only groups. The lactate and caffeine exercise group experienced a significant increase in myogenin and follistatin expression of GA relative to the exercise only group. These results suggest that administration of LC can effectively increase muscle mass concomitant with elevated numbers of myonuclei, even with low-intensity exercise training, via activated satellite cells and anabolic signals.  The really exciting aspect of this study seems to suggest that taking caffeine combined with the high intensity exercise which elicits high levels of lactic acid is a good combination for muscle growth and increases in anabolic pathways.



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Robbie Durand has been in the sports supplement and  bodybuilding industry for 15 years. He has contributed to many national magazines and web sites. He has an M.A. in exercise physiology from Southeastern University and a B.A. in Dietetics from Louisiana State University.