What is GHK Basic Peptide?
GHK Basic is a tripeptide containing the amino acid sequence glycyl-histidyl-lysine. These short-chain amino acids help cell communication for specific effects, much like insulin, which allows blood sugar to be absorbed by muscles and other tissues. Peptides like GHK Basic are organ specific.
The GHK protein has a variety of beneficial biological activities, including stimulating blood vessels and nerve outgrowth, increasing elastin, glycosaminoglycan, collagen synthesis, and promoting dermal fibroblast functions. The tissue repair properties of this peptide have been demonstrated in lung connective tissue, bone tissue, liver, stomach lining, and skin.(1)
The peptide also has potent anticancer and anti-inflammatory properties. It holds anti-anxiety, anti-pain, and anti-aggression properties. It assists with DNA repair, lung protection, reactivation of Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD) fibroblasts, cell cleansing stimulation via the proteasome system, and the suppression of aging molecules like NFκB.
GHK Basic functions to repair the protective proteins in the skin barrier, tightening and reversing loose skin and thinning of aged skin simultaneously. This reduces fine lines and the depth of wrinkles and provides better skin elasticity, clarity, and firmness. It smooths rough skin, enhances wound healing, improves overall skin appearance, and boosts hair growth.
The Structural Components of GHK Basic(2)
Molecular Mass: 340.378 g/mol
Molecular Formula: C14H24N6O4
Density: 1.3±0.1 g/cm3
Boiling Point: 831.0±65.0 °C at 760 mmHg
Vapor Pressure: 0.0±3.2 mmHg at 25°C
The Functions and Benefits of GHK Basic
Improvement of Skin Regeneration
Because of their well-functioning protective and repair mechanisms, young people and children have an incredible skin regeneration and damage repair ability. This skin function, however, declines with age, implying that GHK level is highest in the plasma of young, healthy people.
According to research, adding plasma from young people to liver tissue from older people caused the more aged tissues to produce proteins identical to those seen in younger people.(2,3,4) Several studies have shown that GHK proteins increase collagen production, glycosaminoglycans, and small proteoglycan decorin. Furthermore, this research indicates that GHK influences the activities of metalloproteinases – enzymes that initiate extracellular matrix protein breakdown – and antiprotease actions. This GHK action is required to regulate protein breakdown in the skin, preventing the accumulation of damaged proteins and excessive proteolysis. GHK promotes skin regeneration and appearance by regulating the activities of metalloproteinases and their inhibitors. Furthermore, GHK affects skin fibroblasts, which benefits the skin’s regenerative processes.
GHK Basic’s Effect on Wound Healing
Clinical studies in animal models show that the peptide promotes wound healing through various mechanisms.(5,6) First, GHK, when combined with a high-dose helium-neon laser, accelerates wound contraction and granular tissue production while hosting antioxidant enzyme activities and increasing blood vessel growth. Second, wound healing in healthy and diabetic mice is improved by collagen dressing packed into GHK. Increased glutathione and ascorbic acid levels were found, as well as enhanced epithelialization and increased collagen synthesis, fibroblasts, and mast cell activation in wounds.
GHK and its analogs are also effective for follicular stimulation and hair growth. The naturally occurring copper complex GHK-Cu increases vascular endothelial growth factor production, which promotes growth and blood vessel formation by increasing the vascularity of blood supply to the hair follicle. A significant advantage of the GHK-Cu copper peptides are that they can be combined with other peptides that are plasma rich in platelets, stem cells, or exosomes. Furthermore, compared to other FDA-approved treatments, this peptide treatments have fewer side effects and rebound.
Anti-inflammatory and Antioxidant Activities
A precursor to its antioxidant activity is evident in GHK, inactivating the effects of liquid peroxidation, which produces adverse free radicals capable of DNA, protein, and cell damage by binding its byproducts.(7,8)
GHK promotes the structural remodeling of the connective tissues. It also influences various gene expressions and accelerates the genes of the TGF-β pathway, thereby combating the prevalence of lung COPD and acute lung injury.(9)
The Suppression of Fibrinogen
High fibrinogen levels increase blood viscosity by increasing rouleaux formation, which research shows are a risk factor for cardiovascular disease.(9) The peptide generally inhibits fibrinogen synthesis, lowering the risk of coronary occurrences regardless of LDL cholesterol levels.
GHK Basic’s Impact on the Ubiquitin Proteasome System
The Ubiquitin Proteasome System (UPS) regulates and eliminates damaged proteins, and a dysfunctional Ubiquitin system causes aging. One study observed that once the peptide was administered, it increased gene expression in 41 UPS genes while suppressing 1 UPS gene, yielding a positive result.(8)
Main Functions of GHK Basic
- The peptide exhibits anti-pain, aggression, and anti-anxiety effects
- GHK can penetrate through the stratum corneum, thus enhancing its use in cosmetic formulations, including wrinkle reduction
- GHK also suppresses insulin and insulin-like genes, decreasing aging effects and promoting longevity in numerous organs. Research suggests the potential of GHK in neurodegenerative conditions, stating ‘the GHK-Cu peptide should be considered a promising neuroprotective agent capable of preventing the development of common age-associated neurodegenerative disorders.’(8)
Recent research indicates that GHK functions to restore the genes of diseased cells from COPD or cancer patients to a healthier and younger state.
This peptide has no adverse effects and has excellent subcutaneous and oral bioavailability in mice.
GHK Basic is available for educational and scientific purposes, not for human consumption. Only purchase GHK Basic if you are a licensed researcher.
- Pickart L, Margolina A. Regenerative and Protective Actions of the GHK-Cu Peptide in the Light of the New Gene Data. Int J Mol Sci. 2018 Jul 7;19(7):1987
- Pickart L, Vasquez-Soltero JM, Margolina A. GHK Peptide as a Natural Modulator of Multiple Cellular Pathways in Skin Regeneration. Biomed Res Int. 2015;2015:648108. DOI: 10.1155/2015/648108.
- Dou Y, Lee A, Zhu L, Morton J, Ladiges W. The potential of GHK as an anti-aging peptide. Aging Pathobiol Ther. 2020 Mar 27;2(1):58-61. DOI: 10.31491/apt.2020.03.014.
- Abdulghani, AA, Sherr S, Shirin S, Solodkin G, Tapia EM, Gottlieb AB. Effects of topical creams containing vitamin C, a copper-binding peptide cream and melatonin compared with tretinoin on the ultrastructure of normal skin – A pilot clinical, histologic, and ultrastructural study. Disease Manag Clin Outcomes. 1998;1:136-141
- Leyden J, Stephens T, Finkey MB, Appa, Y, Barkovic S, Skin Care Benefits of Copper Peptide Containing Facial Cream. Amer Academy Dermat Meeting, February 2002, Abstract P68, P69
- Beretta G, Artali R, Regazzoni L, Panigati M, Facino RM. Glycyl-histidyl-lysine (GHK) is a quencher of alpha,beta-4-hydroxy-trans-2-nonenal: a comparison with carnosine. Insights into the mechanism of reaction by electrospray ionization mass spectrometry, 1H NMR, and computational techniques. Chem Res Toxicol. 2007 Sep;20(9):1309-14
- Pickart L, Vasquez-Soltero JM, Margolina A. The human tripeptide GHK-Cu in prevention of oxidative stress and degenerative conditions of aging: implications for cognitive health. Oxid Med Cell Longev. 2012;2012:324832.
- Pickart L, Vasquez-Soltero JM, Margolina A. GHK and DNA: resetting the human genome to health. Biomed Res Int. 2014;2014:151479. DOI: 10.1155/2014/151479.
NOTE: These products are intended for laboratory research use only. GHK Basic for sale (50mg) is not intended for personal use. Please review and adhere to our Terms and Conditions before ordering.
Dr. Marinov (MD, Ph.D.) is a researcher and chief assistant professor in Preventative Medicine & Public Health. Prior to his professorship, Dr. Marinov practiced preventative, evidence-based medicine with an emphasis on Nutrition and Dietetics. He is widely published in international peer-reviewed scientific journals and specializes in peptide therapy research.