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Compound In Green Tomatoes Strengthens Muscles, Prevents Atrophy

April 16, 2014: 12:00 AM EST
A Harvard University researcher has determined that a compound found in green tomatoes helps build muscle and protect against muscle atrophy caused by cancer, heart failure and orthopedic injuries. Using a systems biology tool called the Connectivity Map, the researcher discovered that tomatidine changes gene expression in ways opposite to changes that occur in muscle cells affected by atrophy. They found that tomatidine stimulates growth of cultured muscle cells from humans, and that healthy mice supplemented with tomatidine grew bigger muscles, became stronger, exercised longer, and avoided muscle atrophy. The compound may also have potential for treating obesity.
M. C. Dyle et al., "Systems-Based Discovery of Tomatidine as a Natural Small Molecule Inhibitor of Skeletal Muscle Atrophy. ", Journal of Biological Chemistry, April 16, 2014, © American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology
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