Work with cell cultures and experiments with animals have shown that administration of thymosin β4 can promote migration of cells, formation of blood vessels, maturation of stem cells, survival of various cell types and lowering of the production of pro-inflammatory cytokines. These multiple properties have provided the impetus for a worldwide series of on-going clinical trials of potential effectiveness of thymosin β4 in promoting repair of wounds in skin, cornea and heart.[17]
Oxytocin (Oxt; /ˌɒksɪˈtoʊsɪn/) is a peptide hormone and neuropeptide. Oxytocin is normally produced by the paraventricular nucleus of the hypothalamus and released by the posterior pituitary.[3] It plays a role in social bonding, sexual reproduction, and during and after childbirth.[4] Oxytocin is released into the bloodstream as a hormone in response to stretching of the cervix and uterus during labor and with stimulation of the nipples from breastfeeding.[5] This helps with birth, bonding with the baby, and milk production.[5][6] Oxytocin was discovered by Henry Dale in 1906.[7] Its molecular structure was determined in 1952.[8] Oxytocin is also used as a medication to facilitate childbirth.[9][10][11]
Increasing trust and reducing fear. In a risky investment game, experimental subjects given nasally administered oxytocin displayed "the highest level of trust" twice as often as the control group. Subjects who were told that they were interacting with a computer showed no such reaction, leading to the conclusion that oxytocin was not merely affecting risk-aversion.[18] Nasally administered oxytocin has also been reported to reduce fear, possibly by inhibiting the amygdala (which is thought to be responsible for fear responses).[19] There is no conclusive evidence for access of oxytocin to the brain through intranasal administration, however.
Angiogenesis is an essential step in the repair process that occurs after injury. In this study, we investigated whether the angiogenic thymic peptide thymosin beta4 (Tbeta4) enhanced wound healing in a rat full thickness wound model. Addition of Tbeta4 topically or intraperitoneally increased reepithelialization by 42% over saline controls at 4 d and by as much as 61% at 7 d post-wounding. Treated wounds also contracted at least 11% more than controls by day 7. Increased collagen deposition and angiogenesis were observed in the treated wounds. We also found that Tbeta4 stimulated keratinocyte migration in the Boyden chamber assay. After 4-5 h, migration was stimulated 2-3-fold over migration with medium alone when as little as 10 pg of Tbeta4 was added to the assay. These results suggest that Tbeta4 is a potent wound healing factor with multiple activities that may be useful in the clinic.
Melanotan II was originally developed as a treatment for sexual dysfunction. However, this was abandoned when the metabolite bremelanotide was developed instead for treatment of haemorrhagic shock. Melanotan II is usually injected subcutaneously for the purposes of sunless tanning, appetite suppression, inducing sexual desire and penile erection and other conditions such as rosacea and fibromyalgia. There are also dose forms available for nasal administration. The therapeutic dose is considered to be 0.01 mg/kg.
In 19 obese females given either placebo or 8mg/kg (weight not actually given, only BMI between 30-40 for women) daily for 5 weeks without any concurrent dietary recommendations, 5-HTP treatment was associated with a decrease in appetite and food intake (resulting in weight loss) without significantly affecting mood state.[9] This study noted that food intake was reduced from an average of 2,903kcal to 1,819kcal (62% of baseline) while placebo only reduced calories to 80%, and the 0.5kg weight loss in placebo was outperformed by a near 1.5kg loss in 5-HTP. These weight loss effects have been noted with 750mg 5-HTP over 2 weeks in overweight diabetics[10] and over 12 weeks in obese persons given 900mg 5-HTP daily (58% of baseline intake); this latter study had a 6 week trial without a diet (in which significant weight loss was only noted at week 6) followed up by coadministration with a diet where weight loss proceeded to reach an additional 3.3kg over the subsequent 6 weeks;[11] this latter study is duplicated in Medline.[12]
An interesting concept that has emerged from initial findings is that regeneration and fibrosis are competing events in the vertebrate heart. That is, if there is a capacity for injury-stimulated cardiomyocyte hyperplasia beyond a certain threshold, regenerative mechanisms will overcome scarring. Results consistent with this idea came from experiments with zebrafish possessing a ts mutation in the cell-cycle checkpoint kinase Mps1 (Poss et al., 2002b). As mentioned earlier, mps1 mutants were initially identified based on their defects in caudal fin regeneration. Serendipitously, mps1 mutants also showed defects in cardiac regeneration at a temperature restrictive for the mutation (Poss et al., 2002b). Instead of regenerating muscle in response to ventricular resection injury, mps1 mutants repaired wounds by forming large, collagen-rich scars. Inhibition of Fgf signaling also stunts cardiac regeneration and causes scarring (Lepilina et al., 2006). These results indicate that even vertebrates with high cardiac regenerative capacity have a default scarring mechanism; normally, regeneration somehow restricts this pathway (Fig. 8). The implication is exciting; perhaps by stimulating regeneration in a poorly-regenerative system like the mammalian heart, scarring events characteristic of myocardial infarction would be restricted by new muscle formation. Similarly, deterring cardiac scarring mechanisms would perhaps favor regeneration in mammals.
It turns out the love hormone oxytocin is two-faced. Oxytocin has long been known as the warm, fuzzy hormone that promotes feelings of love, social bonding and well-being. It's even being tested as an anti-anxiety drug. But new Northwestern Medicine® research shows oxytocin also can cause emotional pain, an entirely new, darker identity for the hormone.
Combined treatments of 5-HTP and SSRI seem to have strong synergistic effects on serotonin levels in rats and humans so that some clinicians recommend the use of slow-released 5-HTP in combination with SSRIs (R, R2, R3). However, additional clinical trials are required to demonstrate the safety and effectiveness of this approach, and combinations of 5-HTP and medications should only be used under medical supervision.
The reality is that people are always going to self-medicate. Boots, Amazon and H&B all sell 5-HTP, and in theory you could keep buying it and taking it for as long as you like. But it's important to know the facts. It shouldn't be used in conjunction with an SSRI, for example. In that situation, if the body is preventing serotonin breakdown while also getting extra serotonin, which leads to seriously unhealthy levels of serotonin activity.
To determine the effects of Tβ4 peptide and H2O2 on cytotoxicity, its cell viability was evaluated. A 48-h exposure to 0.1–5 μg/mL Tβ4 peptide did not affect H2O2-mediated cell viabilities (Fig 2A). In order to examine whether Tβ4 peptide suppressed ROS-induced inflammatory mediators, the ability of Tβ4 peptide on production of NO and PGE2, and expressions of COX-2 and iNOS were measured by RT-PCR, Western blot, and ELISA. Pretreatment with Tβ4 peptide dose-dependently inhibited H2O2-induced mRNA and protein expressions of COX-2 and iNOS, and NO and PGE2 production (Fig 2B–2E).
In a study measuring oxytocin serum levels in women before and after sexual stimulation, the author suggests it serves an important role in sexual arousal. This study found genital tract stimulation resulted in increased oxytocin immediately after orgasm.[105] Another study reported increases of oxytocin during sexual arousal could be in response to nipple/areola, genital, and/or genital tract stimulation as confirmed in other mammals.[106] Murphy et al. (1987), studying men, found oxytocin levels were raised throughout sexual arousal with no acute increase at orgasm.[107] A more recent study of men found an increase in plasma oxytocin immediately after orgasm, but only in a portion of their sample that did not reach statistical significance. The authors noted these changes "may simply reflect contractile properties on reproductive tissue".[108]

In 19 obese females given either placebo or 8mg/kg (weight not actually given, only BMI between 30-40 for women) daily for 5 weeks without any concurrent dietary recommendations, 5-HTP treatment was associated with a decrease in appetite and food intake (resulting in weight loss) without significantly affecting mood state.[9] This study noted that food intake was reduced from an average of 2,903kcal to 1,819kcal (62% of baseline) while placebo only reduced calories to 80%, and the 0.5kg weight loss in placebo was outperformed by a near 1.5kg loss in 5-HTP. These weight loss effects have been noted with 750mg 5-HTP over 2 weeks in overweight diabetics[10] and over 12 weeks in obese persons given 900mg 5-HTP daily (58% of baseline intake); this latter study had a 6 week trial without a diet (in which significant weight loss was only noted at week 6) followed up by coadministration with a diet where weight loss proceeded to reach an additional 3.3kg over the subsequent 6 weeks;[11] this latter study is duplicated in Medline.[12]
Treatment with thymosin beta 4 (Tβ4) reduces infarct volume and preserves cardiac function in preclinical models of cardiac ischemic injury. These effects stem in part from decreased infarct size, but additional benefits are likely due to specific antifibrotic and proangiogenic activities. Injected or transgenic Tβ4 increase blood vessel growth in large and small animal models, consistent with Tβ4 converting hibernating myocardium to an actively contractile state following ischemia. Tβ4 and its degradation products have antifibrotic effects in in vitro assays and in animal models of fibrosis not related to cardiac injury. This large number of pleiotropic effects results from Tβ4’s many interactions with cellular signaling pathways, particularly indirect regulation of cellular motility and movement via the SRF–MRTF–G-actin transcriptional pathway. Variation in effects and effect sizes in animal models may potentially be due to variable distribution of Tβ4. Preclinical studies of PK/PD relationships and a reliable pharmacodynamic biomarker would facilitate clinical development of Tβ4.
Oxytocin is a versatile actor, whose resume includes all sorts of jobs in sex, reproduction, social behaviour and emotions.  It can increase trust among people and make them more cooperative (this works in meerkats, too). It can increase the social skills of autistic people. It’s released during orgasm. It affects lactating breasts, contracting wombs and the behaviour of sheep mothers towards their newly born lambs. The list goes on: drug addiction, generosity, depression, empathy, learning, memory.
The polyherbal formula described for acute wounds promoted both angiogenesis and fibroblast proliferation and collagen synthesis in a streptozotocin diabetic rat model (Gupta et al., 2008). Dressings impregnated with copper oxide applied to wounds of diabetic mice resulted in the upregulation of the pro-angiogenic factors placental growth factor, hypoxia-inducible factor-1α and VEGF, leading to increased angiogenesis and faster wound closure (Borkow et al., 2010). High-throughput screening of medicinal plants known to be beneficial for blood circulation identified a material named SBD.4a from the plant Angelica sinensis as having angiogenic properties on a par with PDGF-BB (Zhao et al., 2006).

I broke my neck this year at C6-C7 facets. Started taking TB-500 immediately following the accident. I don’t sit still well and was back in the gym almost immediately, simply to not go stir crazy and pump the blood anyway I could. 8 weeks later I was hitting bodyweight overhead squats for reps with the jerk, 0 pain and completely stable spine. I’m in my late 30s. I eat well, sleep well, and drink a lot of water. I doubt I would have been as well off, had I not taken the TB.

Oxytocin production is controlled by a positive feedback mechanism. This mechanism allows the release of the oxytocin hormone when a trigger occurs. The hormone then causes an action in the body, such as the letdown of milk or the start of labor contractions, which signals more production of oxytocin. The feedback cycle continues until the action, such as childbirth or feeding the baby, is complete.
RegeneRX Biopharmaceuticals is focusing on the commercialization of Tb4 “For the treatment of injured tissue and non-healing wounds, to enable more rapid repair and/or tissue regeneration.” Especially needy are diabetics who suffer from poor blood circulation and loss of sensation of pain that keeps their wounds unnoticed and unattended for days, leading to ulcers that may not heal. Other hard healing wounds are pressure ulcers in patients who are bed ridden and often receive skin grafts as treatment, or reconstructive surgery.
It turns out the love hormone oxytocin is two-faced. Oxytocin has long been known as the warm, fuzzy hormone that promotes feelings of love, social bonding and well-being. It's even being tested as an anti-anxiety drug. But new Northwestern Medicine® research shows oxytocin also can cause emotional pain, an entirely new, darker identity for the hormone.

Hypoxic heart disease is a predominant cause of disability and death worldwide. As adult mammals are incapable of cardiac repair after infarction, the discovery of effective methods to achieve myocardial and vascular regeneration is crucial. Efforts to use stem cells to repopulate damaged tissue are currently limited by technical considerations and restricted cell potential. We discovered that the small, secreted peptide thymosin beta4 (Tbeta4) could be sufficiently used to inhibit myocardial cell death, stimulate vessel growth, and activate endogenous cardiac progenitors by reminding the adult heart on its embryonic program in vivo. The initiation of epicardial thickening accompanied by increase of myocardial and epicardial progenitors with or without infarction indicate that the reactivation process is independent of injury. Our results demonstrate Tbeta4 to be the first known molecule able to initiate simultaneous myocardial and vascular regeneration after systemic administration in vivo. Given our findings, the utility of Tbeta4 to heal cardiac injury may hold promise and warrant further investigation.
Liver fibrosis, a major characteristic of chronic liver disease, is inappropriate tissue remodeling caused by prolonged parenchymal cell injury and inflammation. During liver injury, hepatic stellate cells (HSCs) undergo transdifferentiation from quiescent HSCs into activated HSCs, which promote the deposition of extracellular matrix proteins, leading to liver fibrosis. Thymosin beta 4 (Tβ4), a major actin-sequestering protein, is the most abundant member of the highly conserved β-thymosin family and controls cell morphogenesis and motility by regulating the dynamics of the actin cytoskeleton. Tβ4 is known to be involved in various cellular responses, including antiinflammation, wound healing, angiogenesis, and cancer progression. Emerging evidence suggests that Tβ4 is expressed in the liver; however, its biological roles are poorly understood. Herein, we introduce liver fibrogenesis and recent findings regarding the function of Tβ4 in various tissues and discuss the potential role of Tβ4 in liver fibrosis with a special focus on the effects of exogenous and endogenous Tβ4. Recent studies have revealed that activated HSCs express Tβ4 in vivo and in vitro. Treatment with the exogenous Tβ4 peptide inhibits the proliferation and migration of activated HSCs and reduces liver fibrosis, indicating it has an antifibrotic action. Meanwhile, the endogenously expressed Tβ4 in activated HSCs is shown to promote HSCs activation. Although the role of Tβ4 has not been elucidated, it is apparent that Tβ4 is associated with HSC activation. Therefore, understanding the potential roles and regulatory mechanisms of Tβ4 in liver fibrosis may provide a novel treatment for patients.
In persons with Panic Disorders (versus persons without as control) ingesting 200mg of 5-HTP, both groups experienced an increase in salivary cortisol within 3 hours but the persons with Panic Attacks continued to have greater increases after the 3 hour mark; this increased cortisol was independent of any percieved side-effects such as headache, fatigue, perspiration, nausea, etc.[43]
The expression of Tβ4 mRNA is cell cycle dependent and is highest at the G0/G1 transition and during S-phase (), and changes in the expression of Tβ4 appear to be related to cell differentiation. It has been reported that hepatocyte growth factor, nerve growth factor or fibroblast growth factor (FGF) can increase the level of Tβ4 mRNA () and, in addition, interferon treatment augments the transcription of the Tβ4 gene (). It has also been shown that increased Tβ4 expression in cancer cells promotes metastasis, possibly by increasing cell mobility.
Young says that the oxytocin field would benefit from closer collaboration between basic and clinical researchers. If basic scientists can work out how oxytocin helps the brain to process social stimuli, then that might help in the design of stimuli — in the form of behavioural therapies — that could be given alongside the hormone to change behaviour, just as oxytocin and pup calls together affect virgin mice. “I think in the future these two branches need to have more communication,” Young says.
Obviously nobody is suggesting coming off your medication, and for many cases of depression and anxiety, a course of SSRIs and/or CBT can be life-saving. For me, during a period of bad anxiety, when I was torn between the idea of going back on antidepressants or not, I began searching for some sort of alternative aid online and soon came across a video of Jim Carrey. Carrey has struggled with depression for the majority of his adult life; he's a classic case of the sad clown. "I take... supplements," he tells Larry King in the clip I found. "Vitamins?" asks King. Not quite, but not far off either. A natural substance called 5-HTP. "It's a wonderful thing," Carrey smiles. "It's amazing." His description of how 5-HTP worked made it sound like a super-drug, a cure-all. All it would take for me would be an anonymous trip to Holland and Barrett and 15 quid. Like every other young person, I knew it as a quick fix for MDMA comedowns, but never considered buying it as a medication replacement. Obviously for severe depression and anxiety, a serious course of SSRIs or cognitive behavioural therapy would be more appropriate. But at this point, I was ready for something to ease the transition.
When combined with antidepressants of the MAOI or SSRI class, very high parenteral doses of 5-HTP can cause acute serotonin syndrome in rats.[23][24] It is unclear if such findings have clinical relevance, as most drugs will cause serious adverse events or death in rodents at very high doses. In humans 5-HTP has never been clinically associated with serotonin syndrome, although 5-HTP can precipitate mania when added to an MAOI.[25]
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