Effects of MSM on Markers of Oxidative Stress and Muscle Damage Following Exhaustive Exercise

Principal Investigator: Kim Tippens, ND MSOM, MPH

Student Investigator: Eric Withee, MS

Abstract: Exercise is an important component of improving and maintaining health. It helps maintain a healthy weight, strengthens muscle and bones, and can reduce the risk of many diseases.  Highly exhaustive bouts of exercise, common during training and participation in competitive events, can instead have a deleterious effect.  Exhaustive exercise produces high levels of reactive oxygen and nitrogen species (RONS) that react with and damage cellular constituents.  The result is muscle cell death, increased soreness, and longer recovery times.  The increased participation in competitive racing leaves millions of people at risk of muscle damage associated with oxidative stress.  This study investigates the effect of methylsulfonylmethane (MSM) supplementation on post-exercise levels of oxidative stress.  Forty participants will supplement with either MSM or placebo for three weeks before competing in a half marathon.  We will investigate whether MSM can reduce the levels oxidative stress, muscle damage and pain associated with exhaustive exercise by comparing post-race biomarker levels to baseline.