The degree of aminoacidemia after dairy protein ingestion does not modulate the postexercise anabolic response in young men: A randomized controlled trial

Alex H. Chan, Randall F. D'Souza, Joseph W. Beals, Nina Zeng, Utpal Prodhan, Aaron C. Fanning, Sally D. Poppitt, Zhong Li, Nicholas A. Burd, David Cameron-Smith, Cameron J. Mitchell

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background: Resistance exercise and dietary protein stimulate muscle protein synthesis (MPS). The rate at which proteins are digested and absorbed into circulation alters peak plasma amino acid concentrations and may modulate postexercise MPS. A novel mineral modified milk protein concentrate (mMPC), with identical amino acid composition to standard milk protein concentrate (MPC), was formulated to induce rapid aminoacidemia. Objectives: The aim of this study was to determine whether rapid aminoacidemia and greater peak essential amino acid (EAA) concentrations induced by mMPC would stimulate greater postresistance exercise MPS, anabolic signaling, and ribosome biogenesis compared to standard dairy proteins, which induce a small but sustained plasma essential aminoacidemia. Methods: Thirty healthy young men (22.5 ± 3.0 y; BMI 23.8 ± 2.7 kg/m2) received primed constant infusions of l-[ring-13C6]-phenylalanine and completed 3 sets of leg presses and leg extensions at 80% of 1 repetition. Afterwards, participants were randomly assigned in a double-blind fashion to consume 25 g mMPC, MPC, or calcium caseinate (CAS). Vastus lateralis biopsies were collected at rest, and 2 and 4 h post exercise. Results: Plasma EAA concentrations, including leucine, were 19.2-26.6% greater in the mMPC group 45-90 min post ingestion than in MPC and CAS groups (P < 0.001). Myofibrillar fractional synthetic rate from baseline to 4 h was increased by 82.6 ± 64.8%, 137.8 ± 72.1%, and 140.6 ± 52.4% in the MPC, mMPC, and CAS groups, respectively, with no difference between groups (P = 0.548). Phosphorylation of anabolic signaling targets (P70S6KThr389, P70S6KThr421/Ser424, RPS6Ser235/236, RPS6Ser240/244, P90RSKSer380, 4EBP1) were elevated by <3-fold at both 2 and 4 h post exercise in all groups (P < 0.05). Conclusions: The amplitude of plasma leucine and EAA concentrations does not modulate the anabolic response to resistance exercise after ingestion of 25 g dairy protein in young men. This trial was registered at as ACTRN12617000393358.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1511-1522
Number of pages12
JournalJournal of Nutrition
Issue number9
StatePublished - Sep 1 2019


  • amino acids
  • anabolic signaling
  • fractional synthetic rate
  • human
  • milk protein
  • resistance exercise
  • ribosome biogenesis

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine (miscellaneous)
  • Nutrition and Dietetics


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