If you are a healthy male, you may be eligible for this study.
Physical inactivity due to injuries (e.g., bone fracture) can lead to loss of muscle mass. A common way to allow a muscle to recover from injury is immobilization (casting) which prevents the active use of the muscle. This immobilization can often lead to loss of muscle mass, which then leads to prolonged recovery time. It is therefore relevant to find new solutions for better recovery time for the muscles after an injury. We are looking for healthy male volunteers to participate in a medical-scientific research study, where we want to investigate whether the use of a dietary supplement (protein supplements) during immobilization can decrease the loss of muscle mass and augment the rate of muscle mass regain during recovery.
Aim of the study
The aim of this study is to determine whether a protein supplementation can reduce muscle loss during immobilization and augment the rate of muscle mass re-gain during recovery.
Who can participate?
- Male between 18 and 35 years
- Body Mass Index between 18.5-30.0 kg/m2
After completion of the research (screening and test days) you will receive €375 as compensation.
The complete research study (excluding the screening session) will last 23 days.
Overall, during the study you will have to:
- Visit Maastricht University 6 times
- 7 days one-legged immobilization
- 14 days recovery
- Blood draws – at five visits
- Measurements to determine changes in muscle mass and body composition (DEXA and CT scan, muscle ultrasound), muscle biopsies, muscle strength tests – at three visits
- Daily consumption of ‘heavy water’ and protein supplements, daily collection of saliva
A Screening assessment period
When you have arrived at the university, we will explain the research protocol and which procedures will be performed. If you have any questions left, you can ask the researcher and/or doctor. If you decide to participate in this research, we ask you to sign the informed consent form. After this procedure, we will start with the screening. If the screening shows that you do not meet the criteria of the research, you cannot participate in the study.
We ask you to come to the laboratory in a fasted state. During this visit we will obtain a blood sample and a saliva sample. Lastly, we will ask you to ingest “heavy water”
We ask you to come to the laboratory in a fasted state. During this visit we will obtain a venous blood sample and a saliva sample. We will also perform CT scan, muscle ultrasound measurement, determine leg volume, and perform a single skeletal muscle biopsy.
Onset of immobilization
We ask you to come to the laboratory in a fasted state. During this visit we will obtain a venous blood sample and a saliva sample. Furthermore, a DEXA scan will be performed. You will also be outfitted with a plaster cast to immobilize 1 leg. The plaster cast will be applied while the knee is at a 30 degree angle. During the immobilization period you will not be able to bend or extend your leg, the ankle joint is however still free. Your mobility will be impaired during this period despite the crutches. The immobilization period lasts for 7 days.
End of immobilization (post-test 1)
We ask you to come to the laboratory in a fasted state. After the cast is removed we will perform a DEXA and CT scan, muscle ultrasound measurement, leg volume, a skeletal muscle biopsy from both legs, and determine leg strength. Furthermore a blood sample will be collected.
During the recovery period you will provide saliva samples and continue to ingest heavy water and the protein supplements.
End of recovery (post-test 2)
We ask you to come to the laboratory in a fasted state. A DEXA and CT scan, muscle ultrasound measurement, leg volume will be performed, a skeletal muscle biopsy from both legs will be taken, and leg strength will be determined. Furthermore a blood sample will be collected.
Participation is on a voluntary basis and you can withdraw at any time, without having to indicate a reason.