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ACE-031 Peptide: What Is It & How Does It Work?

Evidence-Based. Scientifically Reviewed.

ACE-031, a synthetic peptide, is drawing considerable attention in medical and scientific circles for its potential role in enhancing muscle growth and treating muscle-wasting conditions.

This comprehensive review explores its action mechanism, pharmacokinetics, and pharmacological properties, shedding light on this promising therapeutic agent.

Mechanism of Action of ACE-031

ACE-031 operates through several mechanisms, including:

1. Myostatin Inhibition

Myostatin, part of the transforming growth factor-beta (TGF-β) family, is a key skeletal muscle mass regulator.

It normally restricts muscle growth. ACE-031 blocks myostatin's activity, thus lifting the physiological limitation on muscle growth.

2. Interference with ActRIIB Receptors

These receptors are instrumental in the effects of myostatin and other molecules like activins and growth differentiation factors (GDFs).

ACE-031 binds to these receptors, hindering the signaling pathways that normally inhibit muscle cell growth and differentiation.

3. Promotion of Muscle Repair and Regeneration

ACE-031 is believed to not only stimulate muscle hypertrophy but also boost muscle repair and regeneration, an essential factor in conditions like muscle injuries, dystrophies, or age-associated muscle loss.

Absorption and Distribution

Post-administration, ACE-031 swiftly enters the bloodstream and predominantly targets muscle tissues, its primary action sites.

Metabolism and Elimination

Similar to other peptide drugs, ACE-031 is likely broken down by proteolytic enzymes and it has an estimated half-life of around 15 days.

Therapeutic Applications

ACE-031 is under investigation for conditions such as Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy (DMD) and various muscle-wasting diseases.

Its potential extends to treating age-related muscle loss (sarcopenia) and in rehabilitation therapies post-injury.

However, concerns have been raised about its misuse in sports to enhance athletic performance.

Side Effects & Safety

Early clinical trials indicate a relatively safe profile, but its long-term effects remain unclear.

Possible side effects include muscle strength imbalances, joint issues due to rapid muscle growth, and potential impacts on cardiovascular health, tendons, and ligaments.

Regulatory Status & Ethical Considerations

As of the last update of this article, ACE-031 has not been approved by regulatory bodies like the FDA for clinical use. Its non-therapeutic use, especially in sports, raises ethical and fairness questions.

Regulatory agencies and sports governing bodies are monitoring its development and potential misuse.


ACE-031 stands at the forefront of research into muscle growth and repair.

Its ability to modulate muscle mass through myostatin inhibition holds promise for treating various muscle-related disorders, but further research is needed to fully understand its long-term safety, pharmacokinetics, and ethical implications.


1. Campbell C, McMillan HJ, Mah JK, Tarnopolsky M, Selby K, McClure T, Wilson DM, Sherman ML, Escolar D, Attie KM. Myostatin inhibitor ACE-031 treatment of ambulatory boys with Duchenne muscular dystrophy: Results of a randomized, placebo-controlled clinical trial. Muscle Nerve. 2017 Apr;55(4):458-464. doi: 10.1002/mus.25268. Epub 2016 Dec 23. PMID: 27462804.

2. Attie KM, Borgstein NG, Yang Y, Condon CH, Wilson DM, Pearsall AE, Kumar R, Willins DA, Seehra JS, Sherman ML. A single ascending-dose study of muscle regulator ACE-031 in healthy volunteers. Muscle Nerve. 2013 Mar;47(3):416-23. doi: 10.1002/mus.23539. Epub 2012 Nov 21. PMID: 23169607.

3. Cadena SM, Tomkinson KN, Monnell TE, Spaits MS, Kumar R, Underwood KW, Pearsall RS, Lachey JL. Administration of a soluble activin type IIB receptor promotes skeletal muscle growth independent of fiber type. J Appl Physiol (1985). 2010 Sep;109(3):635-42. doi: 10.1152/japplphysiol.00866.2009. Epub 2010 May 13. PMID: 20466801; PMCID: PMC2944638.

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