Main content area

Plasma amino acids and sports injuries

van den Baar, M. T. M., Fekkes, D., van den Hoogenband, C. R., Duivenvoorden, H. J., Pepplinkhuizen, L.
Amino acids 2004 v.26 no.1 pp. 71-76
glycine (amino acid), lysine, ornithine, sports, taurine, tryptophan, tyrosine
The aim of this study was to explore the relationship between changes in plasma amino acids and the incidence of sports injuries during a soccer season. Fourteen plasma amino acids were assayed at monthly intervals in 12 young soccer players during a whole soccer season. Based on the number and severity of injuries the soccer players were divided into an injury-prone and a non-injury-prone group. The mean plasma level of the amino acid glycine was significantly lower (P=0.009) in the injury-prone group than the other group, while the mean plasma levels of tyrosine, tryptophan and lysine were higher in the injury-prone group during this period (P<0.05). However there were no significant differences in the calculated plasma tryptophan and tyrosine/large neutral amino acids ratios. Significant linear time trends were observed for taurine, ornithine, lysine and the tryptophan/large neutral amino acids ratio.These results indicate that the plasma concentrations of glycine and to a lesser extent those of tyrosine, tryptophan and lysine may be promising peripheral markers for injury-proneness in young soccer players. Whether a role for glycine substitution will be indicative to reduce the occurrence of sports injuries will need to be investigated in future studies.