In the human body, IGF-1 is the most popularly known IGF hormone both medically and in performance based circles. However, it is not the only IGF hormone; in fact, there are six IGF related hormones. IGF-1-BP3, known as SomatoKine in synthetic form, developed by Insmed is the primary binding protein that mimics the actions of IGF-1. With BP3 added, it appears to provide the benefits of IGF-1 without the often negative hypoglycemia associated with the insulin like hormone.
In clinical studies, IGF-1-BP3 has been considered for treatment in diabetes, burn victims, those suffering from Growth Hormone Insensitivity Syndrome (GHIS) and osteoporosis. However, in recent years all studies involving osteoporosis and burn victims has been shelved and focus has primarily been placed on GHIS and diabetes.
IGF-1 is comprised of 70 amino acids and functions by supporting the enhancement of glucose, fatty acids and amino acids in the body. Because of its close relation to another hormone, insulin, IGF-1 can potentially lower blood sugar and promote fat gain if used improperly.
By activating the phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase (PI3K)-AKT, IGF-1 will increase muscle mass by increasing the number of cells within skeletal muscle. This will not only promote muscle growth but bone growth and strength, as well as potential organ growth.
IGF-1 also carries a close relationship with another powerful hormone in Human Growth Hormone (HGH). Both IGF-1 and HGH have the ability to increase protein synthesis as well as nitrogen retention in the muscle. Protein synthesis refers to the rate in which cells build proteins, the primary building block of muscle tissue. Increased rates in protein synthesis is imperative to both growth and muscle recovery. Nitrogen retention (muscle tissue is comprised of 16% nitrogen), when retention rates fall this can lead to a catabolic state. The reverse is a greater rate of retention, which leads to a stronger anabolic environment. Most importantly, as with HGH, IGF-1 will increase new muscle fibers.
Important note: IGF-1’s effects are dependent on the amount of protein provided to the body. Inadequate amounts of protein will render IGF-1 somewhat useless.
IGF-1 also plays an important role on healing and recovery, particularly when we consider the hormone’s effect on connective tissues. IGF-1 will enhance collagen synthesis, which results in stronger bones and muscles. IGF-1 will also promote cartilage repair and bone density.
IGF-1-BP3 provides all the effects of IGF-1; however, its benefit is a greater impact on direct action and a significant lessening effect in terms of hypoglycemia. The reason for the improvement in effect is in that IGF-1-BP3 is already bound to the binding protein (BP3), however, data is still somewhat limited in terms of how great this effect is over standard IGF-1.
The positive effects of IGF-1-BP3 largely surround muscle growth and recovery. For the off-season athlete, this will mean gains in lean tissue. The compound doesn’t have much of a use for the cutting or dieting athlete except in rare exceptions. IGF-1-BP3 is often used during an off-season anabolic steroid stack in order to enhance the overall effect or as a bridge in between steroid cycles to help maintain the muscle mass gained while on cycle. Many bridge users will also do so with HGH as it will help ensure they don’t gain too much body fat during use, enhance the effects of IGF-1-BP3 and continue to possibly add growth. However, HGH use in a bridge will only occur if HGH was used in the previous cycle or is planed to be used in the up coming cycle.
Perhaps the most amazing effect of IGF-1-BP3 is in its ability to promote healing. Unlike pain medications IGF-1-BP3 does not mask an injury but can actually promote real life healing. Joint injuries, tendons and ligaments can all be improved with IGF-1-BP3. This can be very valuable to any athlete as these are the areas of the body that take the strongest beating.
There are many possible side effects of IGF-1-BP3; however, while numerous exists most are not that common. The most common side effect of IGF-1 is hypoglycemia with nearly half of all users experiencing a hypoglycemic state at some point during use. However, with IGF-1-BP3 this rate is cut down significantly. In order to avoid any hypoglycemic state, IGF-1-BP3 should be administered with food, specifically carbohydrates and some protein. Once the hormone is administered, if hypoglycemia starts to show, more carbohydrates (fast acting) should be consumed. Hypoglycemia is easy to spot and there should be no question if you are experiencing it. Symptoms of hypoglycemia may include:
If hypoglycemia occurs it is imperative that fast acting carbohydrates are consumed; sugary juices are a great choice. If the individual ignores the symptoms this can lead to horrific consequences; in fact, hypoglycemia that is ignored can potentially lead to death, but there is no reason for any individual to let it get this far.
The most common side effects of IGF-1-BP3 surround those of administration themselves, a bruised or sore area at the injection site. If injection pain occurs the best thing to do is to find another area of the body to administer the hormone.
Important Note: IGF-1-BP3 should not be used by those with cancer. The structural strength of all cells is enhanced by IGF-1 and this can include cancer cells. This should also apply to those with previous fights with cancer.
IGF-1-BP3 will be found in dry powder form and is most commonly reconstituted with bacteriostatic water. IGF-1-BP3 can be injected intramuscularly or subcutaneously depending on user preference. Some users, particularly HGH users will administer both their IGF-1-BP3 and HGH in the same syringe.
Common doses of IGF-1 can range dramatically. It is not uncommon to hear of individuals administering 50mcg or more per day. However, this can be a bit much and even more than needed to produce great results, especially when being used with anabolic steroids. Most will find 15mcg per day with slight increases periodically if needed to be a good place to start as well as a much safer place to start. Total use of IGF-1BP3 like all IGF hormones is generally 3-4wks.
IGF-1-BP3 is not commonly available as it is still in the research stages pharmaceutically but can be found in some avenues. Some research chemical supply companies carry IGF-1-BP3 but it’s often expensive and the user would be better off sticking with LR3-IGF-1. LR3-IGF-1 is far more affordable and will provide the benefits of IGF-1 the user is looking for. The rate of hypoglycemia is greater with traditional IGF, but easy to control as long as adequate food is consumed.
You can buy IGF-1-BP3 online; in fact, this is the only place most will ever be able to buy it. However, many of the products found online are not actual IGF-1-BP3, at best they’re LR3-IGF-1 or some fragment of the IGF-1 hormone. Quality forms of IGF-1BP3 can be found online through a few research chemical supply companies but it may take a bit of digging to find the right one. It’s important to note, buying IGF-1-BP3 online is only legal if done for research purposes and is not legal for individual use. It is an odd law that exists in the U.S. and may differ depending on the country you’re from.
IGF-1-BP3 on its face seems like a great hormone when we consider the effects promoted should be the same as standard IGF-1 with less of a hypoglycemic effect. However, data is so inconclusive at this time it’s difficult to say with any assurance. For this reason, and because standard IGF-1 is cheaper, if IGF-1 is to be used most users will find LR3-IGF-1 to be the best path to follow.