Human skeletal muscle satellite cells are essential for muscle regeneration, remodeling processes in healthy and clinical conditions involving muscle breakdown.
It is well known that these cells are involved in the normal growth of muscles, as well as regeneration following the post exercise muscle damage.
However, the potential influence of protein supplementation on post-exercise satellite cell regulation in human skeletal muscle has not been well investigated.
In a recent study published in the Amino Acids scientific journal, the authors investigated the effect of whey protein supplementation following eccentric exercise on fiber type-specific satellite cells accumulation.
Twenty-four young healthy subjects received either hydrolyzed whey protein + carbohydrate (whey, n = 12) or iso-caloric carbohydrate (placebo, n = 12) during post-exercise recovery from 150 maximal unilateral
Prior to 24, 48 and 168 post-exercise, muscle biopsies were obtained from the exercise leg and analyzed for fiber type-specific satellite cells content.
The conclusion of the study is that the whey protein supplementation may accelerate satellite cells proliferation as part of the regeneration or remodeling process after high-intensity eccentric exercise and is of paramount importance in the muscle growth process.
Amino Acids. 2014 Nov;46(11):2503-16