Ecdysterone: HPLC purity analysis

We tell you the whole truth about ecdysterone and the situation in the food supplements market in relation to it, with all the details including the key measurement method that a company has to ensure in order to confirm that its ecdysterone is not underdosed. .

Ecdysterone, where can we find it

Ecdysterone (20-hydroxy-beta-edisterone, or beta-ecdysterone) is a type of hormone present in insects and a phytosteroid that is extracted from specific plants.

Ecdysterone is marketed as a food supplement from extracts of plants rich in this compound.because thanks to the most recent scientific research, possible significant anabolic mechanisms for humanswhich would be a competitive advantage in sports performance, and a positive effect to increase muscle mass in athletes interested in aesthetics.

The most common sources from which ecdysterone is obtained are:

Cyanotis arachnoidea CB Clarke Commelinaceae.Rhaponticum carthamoides (Willd.) Iljin Asteraceae.Brain turkestanica (Regel) Sparkle. Lamiaceae.

In addition to other less used sources, but which also contain ecdysterone naturally:

Achyranthes bidentata Blume Amaranthaceae.Cerebral multiflora Bunge. Lamiaceae.Ajuga Reptans L. Lamiaceae.Chenopodium album L. Chenopodiaceae.Polypodium vulgare L. Polypodiaceae.Pteridium aquiline L. Kuhn Pteridaceae.Trianthema portulacastro L. Aizoaceae.Vitex glabrata R.Br. Lamiaceae.

Nature is full of sources of this compound, and related substances, those known as ecdysteroids, among which tuskesterone, ecdysone, rubrosterone, and the main known ecidsteroid stand out: ecdysterone.

Why is the origin of ecdysterone not a relevant factor?

A common debate among athletes, sports doctors and users of ecdysterone dietary supplements is Which of all the plant sources from which it is obtained is better.

However, this debate is incredibly empty, and denotes a lack of control of basic concepts of plant extracts, but at HSN we are going to explain why with a simple example:

Which is more effective: the caffeine in coffee or the caffeine in tea?

And if the answer to this question is that tea does not have caffeine, but rather has theine, I will tell you that it is the same substance: 1,3,7-Trimethylxanthine; It is simply called differently depending on the source that contains it, but both contain caffeine/theine.

It may soon become natural for you to respond that the caffeine in coffee is more effective than that in tea; Just as there are people who justify that the ecdysterone of one plant is more effective than that of another, however this is a mistake.

In relation to the effects of the compound, it is the compound itself that has the properties attributed to it.

Ecdysterone works the way it does not because of the source where it comes from, but because of the chemical characteristics that the compound itself possesses; In other words, if the compound is chemically synthesized, it would possess the same properties as if it were obtained (pure) from any of the previous plant sources.

The difference in sources lies in which plant may naturally be more concentrated in the compound of interest; This happens with plants that contain ecdysterone, some are more concentrated in ecdysteroids than others, but…

You don’t take the plant as is, right? The capsules of your dietary supplement are not the powdered plant, right? They will be standardized.

When two extracts from two different plants have equivalent standardization:

For example, 95% ecdysterone, concentration reasoning no longer applies.

The source from which it is obtained, as long as it is properly standardized, is not a relevant factor.

Quantification of Ecdysterone content: HCPL vs UV. Differences

One of the big problems with ecdysterone is that its effectiveness has been questioned numerous times, but the reason why this is questioned is because of the low quality of many of the food supplements that are marketedespecially when they are products of non-European manufacture.

Studies such as those carried out by Isenmann et al. (2019) show that the ecdysterone content of products on the market is much lower than what is actually indicatedIn fact, in the sample used for their study, it was observed that each capsule was 94% underdosed with respect to the ecdysterone content it indicated (100 mg) vs. the actual 6 mg. This is a complete deception.

The reason this occurs is because of the measurement methodThat is, the ecdysterone content of a product is determined using laboratory methods that allow us to know its content. This content can be the natural content of the plant or that of any extract.

Normally the contribution of ecidsterone that is sought to be standardized is the 90-95%.

However, One of the methods most used to determine it is an inadequate method, which is ultraviolet-visible (UV) spectroscopy.. This analysis method consists of the application of magnetic radiation which, depending on the absorption ratio of the sample, allows the quantification and determination of the content of functional molecules and compounds.

Although this measurement method is useful and indicative for many substances, it is also very imprecise in the case of ecdysteronesince since these plants contain many other ecdysteroids with absorbances at wavelengths equivalent to ecdysterone, the amount of radiation absorbed by the sample is much greater in a “false” way, which means that an ecdysterone content can be standardized very high when in fact its contribution is very low, as we could see with Insenmann’s study;

This is because other ecdysteroids “camouflage” themselves as ecdysterone in UV analysis, and this is not accurate at all, giving unrealistically inflated results of the asset.

The way to adequately determine the ecdysterone content of a product is through the use of high sensitivity chromatographic analysis (HPLC), since it is the valid, robust and sensitive method for determining the content of ecdysterone as an individual compound in plants that They contain other ecdysteroids, as established by the scientific reports of Zimmer et al. (2006) and Todorova et al. (2023).

In other words: HPLC is the method that must be used and the only one that guarantees the declared quantityit is something that you can and should ask to know for sure that what you are using is legitimately ecdysterone, and the ecdysterone content is truly what is indicated on the label.

Evosterone (95% por HPLC) de SportSeries

Cost of raw materials – Don’t let them fool you

You may ask yourself a natural question after reading all this, which is…

So why aren’t all extracts standardized in ecdysterone as measured by HPLC?

Because the price is much more expensive, but much, much.

As it is a more specific detection method, which requires more tools and more technical knowledge to perform it correctly, raw materials whose ecdysterone content is determined by HCPL are much more expensive.

If determination by HPLC is not necessarybecause other analyzes such as spectrophotometry or blood gases, which are cheaper, were effective, it would not be necessary to carry out analyzes as expensive as HPLC, but it is necessary in this case because no cheaper determination method is effective.

Companies that use methods like UV are “confusing” their consumers:

GOOD deliberately because they know this; unconsciously because they don’t even know that the UV measurement method is ineffective in determining their ecdysterone content (as a compound separated from other ecdysteroids).

In any case, UV-standardized ecdysterone extracts are unreliable since its ecdysterone content can be from 0 to an unknown value, but always (very) lower than declared.

When we talk about the cost of raw materials we are talking about that 1kg of a plant extract, whether Cyanotis arachnoidea or Rhaponticum carthamoides, presents a 2.5 and 9 greater difference in costbetween HPLC and UV measurement.

Using as a reference a Rhaponticum extract like the one we use in our Evosterone, the kg of raw material analyzed by HPLC that we use costs 1600 euros; while if we chose to use UV it would cost 610 euros, what difference right?

That’s why Many companies use UV extracts, because their production cost is much lowerbut this unfortunately conditions its effectiveness, so in our case we prefer, as always, to opt for quality, and pay the cost of a raw material that really guarantees the content that is declared.

Market products and realities, what is and what is not possible?

Most food supplements on the market sell UV-analyzed ecdysteronealmost all of the products you will find use cheap raw materials standardized following spectrophotometric analysis methods, which has the associated problems that we have been discussing previously.

When we value the manufacturing cost of a food supplement we have to analyze not only the raw material cost as such, but also that of the rest of ingredients (additives, fillers, capsules, etc.), packaging materials, the laboratory that manufactures the supplement (since unlike HSN, most companies in Spain do not have their own factory), transport companies who distribute the product in its different stages of the production process, other intermediaries of the process and public sale establishments; in addition to the margin for the brand…

This makes certain market prices unrealistic, and makes us think that there are products that use a lower amount of ecdysterone than indicated on the packaging, even when the raw material used is the “cheap” one analyzed by UV.

But in any case, and without entering into said evaluations, simply think about the cost of raw materials for X amount of extract, analyzed by HPLC, in a specific number of capsulesthere are prices of products offered in the market that do not correspond to the cost they should have, which raises doubts about the quality of the raw material and/or the manufacturing process of the product.

Our recommendation is to always trust those companies that are transparent, like HSN, that provide you with all the information you need to make an informed purchase, and that are backed by quality certifications that guarantee good manufacturing practices and the transparency of their products. procedures.

Bibliographic references

Zimmer, A. R., Bruxel, F., Bassani, V. L., & Gosmann, G. (2006). HPLC method for the determination of ecdysterone in extractive solution from Pfaffia glomerata. Journal of pharmaceutical and biomedical analysis, 40(2), 450–453. V., Ivanov, K., Karcheva-Bahchevanska, D., & Ivanova, S. (2023). Development and Validation of High-Performance Liquid Chromatography for Identification and Quantification of Phytoecdysteroids Ecdysterone and Turkesterone in Dietary Supplements. Processes, 11(6). E., Ambrosio, G., Joseph, J. F., Mazzarino, M., de la Torre, X., Zimmer, P., … Parr, M. K. (2019). Ecdysteroids as non-conventional anabolic agent: performance enhancement by ecdysterone supplementation in humans. Archives of Toxicology, 93(7), 1807–1816.

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2024-02-21 11:52:06
#Ecdysterone #HPLC #purity #analysis


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