The Many Potential Uses for BPC-157
Written by Leann Poston, M.D.
BPC-157 is a peptide that is derived from a protein found naturally in gastric juices. It is synthetic as it is not naturally occurring outside of the body. BPC-157 has been studied since the early 1990s and has been shown experimentally to have many potential healing properties. Animal studies have consistently demonstrated that BPC-157 promotes wound repair, tissue and injury healing, and protects the lining of the gastrointestinal tract. Unfortunately, there have not yet been double-blind, placebo-controlled human studies to test these results. For this reason, BPC-157, like many peptides, is classified as a research medication and requires a prescription.
“Currently, all studies investigating BPC 157 have demonstrated consistently positive and prompt healing effects for various injury types, both traumatic and systemic, and for a plethora of soft tissues.”Gwyer, Wragg and Wilson (2019)
Read More: The basics of the BPC-157 peptide supplement
Soft tissue injuries
Soft tissues such as ligaments, tendons, and muscles are commonly injured in sporting activities and everyday life, leading to an estimated 300,000 tendon and ligament repair surgeries performed annually in the U.S. alone (Pennisi, 2002). These tissues may or may not have a good blood supply and therefore have a wide range of capabilities in terms of healing potential. BPC-157 has demonstrated, in animal studies, its many uses when healing damaged soft tissue.
Ligaments attach bones to bones and are known for their ability to provide support and stability. Tendons attach muscles to bones, absorb shock, and transfer the force of muscle contraction to bones. Muscles extend and contract to move the body and are a source of heat.
Muscles become bruised as they absorb the energy from an impact with another object. Ligaments become sprained from falls or sudden movements. Tendons are strained from overstretching and repetitive motions. In all cases, the majority of injury complaints are secondary to an incomplete or complete tear of fibers (Sloan, 2008). Getting healing factors from the blood to the tissue is key. Tendons and ligaments sacrifice blood supply to gain strength. This sacrifice is of great benefit until a tendon or ligament is injured. BPC-157 has demonstrated its angiogenic properties in animal studies.
The results of animal studies
In animal studies, Chang et al. (2011), noted that BPC-157 had the following benefits:
- Promoted the growth of tendon explants in laboratory testing
- Increased the survival of tendon fibroblasts when under oxidative stress
- Accelerated the cell migration of tendon fibroblasts
- Induced the cell spreading of tendon fibroblasts
- Induced F-actin formation in tendon fibroblasts
- Activated the FAK-paxillin signaling pathway
The researchers in these animal studies noted that BPC-157 could be administered in a number of different ways and seemed to have benefits after the first dose. They noted that administering BPC-157 along with a noxious stimulus seemed to have additional benefits (Chang et al., 2011). These results, while done in animal studies, demonstrated the many potential uses for BPC-157 in healing soft tissue injuries in humans.
Examples of possible uses of BPC-157
Since BPC-157 has been found to stimulate the production of blood vessels and scavenge free radicals, investigators naturally considered potential uses for BPC-157 in healing wounds. Wound healing is a three-part process of inflammation, cellular proliferation and repair, and remodeling that depends on increasing blood supply and decreasing oxidative stress. In animal studies, BPC-157 has demonstrated its ability to meet these needs.
- Inflammatory phase: For the first 1-5 days, initially blood vessels constrict and seal themselves off with platelet plugs to decrease bleeding into the tissue. Next, blood vessels dilate bringing nutrients, white blood cells, antibodies, and enzymes to the injured tissue.
- Repair/Proliferation Phase: During days 5-14 of the injury the wounded tissue is rebuilt with a special tissue called granulation tissue, which, if healthy, should be a reddish or pinkish color. Fibroblasts guide other cells to the affected area and form bridges between them. Fibroblasts secrete liquids and collagen. The tissue continues to gain strength.
- Remodeling phase: From days 14 to 90 or beyond, depending on the severity of the injury, the tissue is strengthened. During this time, strength, resiliency, and ability to resist forces continue to improve (Hope & Saxby, 2007).
BPC-157 has been tested in chick embryos and seemed to be effective at increasing the production of blood vessels. This finding was confirmed in a study on rats where an increase in VEGFR2 expression was noted. This protein is thought to regulate blood vessel production (Hsieh et al., 2017).
The Achilles tendon is a strong band of connective tissue that attaches the calf muscles to the heel bone. The Achilles tendon is used for walking, running, jumping, and climbing. When the tendon is overstretched due to tight calf muscles or a tight plantar fascia, the following symptoms may develop:
- Thickening of the tendon
- Pain after exercising, with activity, or first thing in the morning
- Tendon swelling
- Pain where the Achilles tendon inserts into the heel bone
The plantar fascia runs from the heel bones to the toes. With each step, it drops and recoils supporting the arch of the foot. Over time collagen in the plantar fascia may degenerate causing inflammation and pain. The typical symptoms of plantar fasciitis include:
- Pain which is worse in the morning
- Heel stiffness that may make climbing steps difficult
- Limping to try to minimize the pain.
The usual treatment of POLICE or protection, optimal loading, ice, compression, and elevation initially with non-steroidal anti-inflammatories, then stretches with the admonition to warm-up is helpful for most people. When the inflammation persists an injection of BPC-157 can stimulate the formation of blood vessels and speed up the healing of damaged tissue. In fact, a study published in the Journal of Applied Physiology demonstrated that animal cells treated with BPC-157 had a higher survival rate than ones that were not, minimizing tissue damage (Chang et al., 2011).
Disorders of the gut
BPC-157 is a stable gastric peptide with anti-ulcer properties that has been used successfully to treat periodontitis, liver, and pancreatic lesions in animals. BPC-157 has also been used to treat alcohol and NSAID induced lesions by protecting stomach cells and maintaining the lining of the stomach (Sikiric et al., 2016).
BPC-157 has been used in clinical trials to treat ulcerative colitis and multiple sclerosis. Ulcerative colitis is an inflammatory bowel disease characterized by large ulcers on the lining of the rectum and colon (Sikiric et al., 2016). According to Tailor Made Compounding (2019), it has also been used to combat leaky gut, irritable bowel syndrome, gastrointestinal cramping, and Crohn’s disease.
Read More: Managing gut health and disorders
BPC-157 prescribing information
BPC 157 has been analyzed using animal studies for decades to determine its possible uses in humans, however, human clinical trials evaluating its usage in a double-blind, placebo-controlled study have not been completed. This places BPC-157 is a gray area as not really a medication or a supplement. A prescription is required to determine whether BPC-157 is right for you and to determine the best means of administering the medication and the correct dosage. Since BPC-157 is in a gray area as far as regulation, purchasing it from a reliable supplier, such as Invigor Medical is essential.
The typical BPC-157 dosage for intramuscular injection is 200 to 300 micrograms per day in a single daily injection. According to most experts, this should be given consistently at around the same time every day, with the evening being the best. For a typical adult of around 80 kg of weight, this works out to around 2.5 to 3.75 micrograms per kilogram of body weight, so it’s a fairly standard BPC-157 dosage on the lower end of the range spectrum. You may be started on a slightly lower dosage, and/or may increase to a higher dosage over time depending on the results you achieve and any side effects that you may experience.
Read More: What is the right BPC-157 dosage?
Since clinical studies in humans have not been completed, information about BPC-157 side effects is taken from animal studies and anecdotal findings. Side effects from BPC-157 can be related to the injection of the medication or from the compound itself. Most injection-based medications may cause redness, swelling, itching, irritation, bruising, or other skin reactions at the injection site. These tend to be mild.
The second category of side effects are those caused by the supplement itself, through the mechanisms of action as it goes to work in the body. The most common BPC-157 side effects in this category are related to the gastrointestinal system, and include:
- Changes to bowel habits
- Gas and bloating
These tend to be mild and intermittent. Other BPC-157 side effects may include:
- Hot or cold flashes
- Changes in hunger patterns or weight
In addition, there are rare or theoretical side effects from BPC-157 that are possible based on the effects of the medication, but since human clinical trials have not been done, the incidence and prevalence of these side effects are unknown. These possible side effects include:
- Increased angiogenesis or production of blood vessels may also increase tumor growth.
- BPC-157 has some effect on the dopaminergic and serotonergic systems in the brain.
- BPC-157 has effects on blood pressure and heart rhythms.
Read More: Potential BPC-157 side effects
Invigor Medical and BPC-157
All medications have side-effects. BPC-157 seems to have many uses and benefits when tested in animal studies. Unfortunately, there have not been human studies to document the transfer of these same benefits to humans or to investigate adverse effects. One of the best ways to minimize the risk of any possible side-effects is to get BPC-157 from a reputable company and pharmacy.
Invigor Medical is a trusted telemedicine provider, based in the US, with US-licensed medical professionals who provide online consultations and prescriptions. These prescriptions are then filled via our associated, US-based (state of Florida) pharmacy and delivered discreetly to your home. You can set up an appointment through Invigor Medical’s website and enjoy the convenience and benefits that telemedicine has to offer.
While we strive to always provide accurate, current, and safe advice in all of our articles and guides, it’s important to stress that they are no substitute for medical advice from a doctor or healthcare provider. You should always consult a practicing professional who can diagnose your specific case. The content we’ve included in this guide is merely meant to be informational and does not constitute medical advice.
- Sikiric, P., Seiwerth, S., Rucman, R., Kolenc, D., Vuletic, L. B., Drmic, D., Grgic, T., Strbe, S., Zukanovic, G., Crvenkovic, D., Madzarac, G., Rukavina, I., Sucic, M., Baric, M., Starcevic, N., Krstonijevic, Z., Bencic, M. L., Filipcic, I., Rokotov, D. S., & Vlainic, J. (2016). Brain-gut Axis and Pentadecapeptide BPC 157: Theoretical and Practical Implications. Current neuropharmacology, 14(8), 857–865. https://doi.org/10.2174/1570159×13666160502153022
- Chung-Hsun Chang, Wen-Chung Tsai, Miao-Sui Lin, Ya-Hui Hsu, and Jong-Hwei Su Pang. (2011). The promoting effect of pentadecapeptide BPC 157 on tendon healing involves tendon outgrowth, cell survival, and cell migration. Journal of Applied Physiology, 110:3, 774-780
- Sloan J (2008) Soft tissue injuries: introduction and basic principles. Emerg Med J 25:33–37
- Gwyer, D., Wragg, N.M. & Wilson, S.L. Gastric pentadecapeptide body protection compound BPC 157 and its role in accelerating musculoskeletal soft tissue healing. Cell Tissue Res 377, 153–159 (2019). https://doi.org/10.1007/s00441-019-03016-8
- Hope M, Saxby T (2007) Tendon healing. Foot Ankle Clin 12:553–567
- Tailor Made Compounding. (2019). Peptide Guide. Retrieved from https://2gqdkq4bpinp49wvci47k081-wpengine.netdna-ssl.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/02/Peptide-fact-sheets-indesign-file-11.1.18.pdf
- Hsieh MJ, et al. Therapeutic potential of pro-angiogenic BPC157 is associated with VEGFR2 activation and up-regulation. J Mol Med (Berl). (2017)