GHRP-2 is short for growth hormone releasing peptide-2. GHRP-2 is a synthetic peptide consisting of just seven amino acids (D-Ala-D-(β-naphthyl)-Ala-Ala-Trp-D-Phe-Lys). It is part of a series of compounds developed by Polygen (Germany) and Tulane University (United States) in an effort to create easily administered analogues of growth hormone releasing hormone1 . GHRP-2 is also known as GPA-748, pralmorelin, KP-102 D, DP-102 LN, DP-102D, and KP-102LN.
GHRP-2 is a growth hormone (GH) secretagogue. It is NOT an agonist of the growth hormone releasing hormone receptor (GHRHR), but rather is an agonist of the ghrelin receptor. As a GH secretagogue, GHRP-2 causes the release of growth hormone, which in turn causes the release of insulin-like growth factor-1 (IGF-1) and a host of other hormones. The major effects of stimulating growth hormone release include hyperplasia (growth in cell numbers) and hypertrophy (growth in cell size) in bone and skeletal muscle. Additional effects include improve function of heart muscle (cardiomyocytes), increased lipid metabolism (fat loss), and decreases in blood sugar (glucose).
By stimulating ghrelin receptors, GHRP-2 also acts as an appetite stimulant. Research in lean, healthy human males, published in the Journal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism, found a 35.9% increase in appetite among subjects receiving GHRP-2 injections compared to saline injections2 . Ghrelin is a known appetite stimulant and has been found to regulate growth hormone secretion as well.
GHRP-2 is currently under investigation in Japan as a treatment for short stature. It is under investigation in the United States as a potential treatment for GH deficiency. Tulane University currently holds a patent, issued in October 2002, for protection of its series of synthesized GH-releasing peptides. The patent includes GHRP-2.
A 2004 study on rats found that GHRP-2 does not have any significant side effects on nervous system, smooth muscles, respiratory system, cardiovascular system, digestive system, or urinary system (kidneys). The hope is to eventually use GHRP-2 to both diagnose GH deficiency and treat short stature that results from GH deficiency3 .
- Pralmorelin: GHRP 2, GPA 748, growth hormone-releasing peptide 2, KP-102 D, KP-102 LN, KP-102D, KP-102LN. Drugs RD5, 236-239 (2004).
- Laferrère, B., Abraham, C., Russell, C. D. & Bowers, C. Y. Growth Hormone Releasing Peptide -2 (GHRP-2), like ghrelin, increases food intake in healthy men. J. Clin. Endocrinol. Metab.90, 611-614 (2005).
- Furuta, S. et al. General Pharmacology of KP-102 (GHRP-2), a Potent Growth Hormone-Releasing Peptide. Arzneimittelforschung54, 868-880 (2011).