Protein characterization by Amino acid profile
Since many years whey protein supplements are very popular among athletes, especially body builders and fitness athletes.
The optimal amino acid composition of whey protein which shows to be particular rich in essential amino acids is ideal for muscle gain and maintenance.
Progressive increase of whey protein prices due to extensive growth of worldwide infant milk productions, leads to undesired side effects as some production companies have been shown to try to keep their margins by illegaly manipulating their products through “amino acid spiking”. Spiking involves replacement of high value whey protein by low level compounds such as amino acids like glycine, taurine, glutamine or low value protein as e.g. collagen. Glycine and glutamine are relatively cheap non-essential amino acids. Collagen is a cheap protein but does not contribute much in terms of nutritional value as it consists predominantly of glycine, alanine and proline, all non-essential amino acids. And although taurine is an important metabolic compound, it might even cause negative side effects when taken in large amounts.
Production companies, who are involved in replacement or spiking, count on the fact that most whey protein products or supplements are typically analyzed for their total nitrogen content as determination of the protein content. Unfortunately this analysis does not distinguish the origin of the detected nitrogen. For instance addition of 20% glycine would still count as protein content. The best way to determine the nutritional value of a whey protein supplement is to analyze the complete amino acid profile. Alternatively analysis of free amino acids (amino acids not bound to proteins) can be performed to check for amino acid additions, as factory produced whey powders do not contain significant amounts of free amino acids
The possibilities of tampering with e.g. sport supplements make it therefore necessary to test protein and amino acid supplements for composition and content. Ansynth is highly specialized in analyzing amino acid profiles in nearly any type of sample and especially for (whey) protein and amino acid supplements we maintain customized programs with very attractive rates. Please inquire for possibilities.