Selank is a short, synthetic heptapeptide composed of seven amino acids. Selank was developed with the intention of mimicking the naturally occurring peptide, Tuftsin (5), a natural tetrapeptide involved in some biological functions that regulate the immune system. After the discovery and initial isolation of Tuftsin, researchers suggested that the peptide may be involved in several functions of phagocytic cells, including phagocytosis, motility, and immunological cell functions (2). Since then, several synthetic analogs of Tuftsin have been synthesized in the laboratory by two methods, namely conventional and polymeric reagent methods (4).
Selank is composed of two entities – one is a short fragment from the immunoglobulin G (IgG) and the other is a tripeptide Pro-Gly-Pro at the end of the molecule. These two entities have the potential to increase duration of action as well as possibly leading to enhanced peptide stability (6). Studies have suggested that Selank works through a similar mechanism as that of the benzodiazepines, possibly acting on the gamma aminobutyric acid (GABA) receptors.
In one study (7), the expression of 84 genes that are involved in neurotransmission was studied in rats. The experimental rats were presented Selank or GABA, and the gene expression was studied after one and three hours, using the PCR method. All the gene expressions that were studied for both Selank and GABA appeared to be positively correlated to each other. The results suggested that Selank had potential to induce several alterations in the neurotransmission process, suggesting by proxy that Selank may exert potential action via modulating the GABAergic system.
Further studies were conducted to understand the potential of Selank peptide on genome expression and thereby its involvement in the inflammatory process. These studies (8) were carried out on male rats weighing 250 grams. These rats were separated into three groups – one was presented with control, another with Selank just once, and the last group was given Selank for five days. After the study, the RNA was isolated from the rat spleen and hippocampus and studied via PCR method. Based on the results, it was suggested by the researchers that Selank might have potential in impacting gene expression, more strongly on the spleen and the hippocampus. One of the gene expressions reported during the study was the change in CX3CR1, which is involved in the inflammatory process. This suggested that Selank has the potential to regulate the inflammatory process through the mechanism of gene expression, mainly the CX3CR1 alteration.
Research and Clinical studies
Selank Peptide and Anxiolytic Activity
In this clinical study (9), 62 subjects with Generalized Anxiety Disorder (GAD) were examined. These subjects were divided into two groups – 30 subjects were presented Selank, whereas 32 subjects were presented with a generic benzodiazepine compound. Following the study, the psychometric levels of all subjects were analyzed. Results suggested that the potential impact of Selank appeared the same as that of the generic compound. Researchers also reported that enkephalin levels of tau leu-enkephalin were apparently reduced in the Selank subjects.
Selank Peptide and Memory
This study (11) was conducted on rats that were enrolled in a “training” session of four days for learning conditioned avoidance response (CAR). CAR is a learned response for delaying or preventing the avoidance behavior. Selank peptide was presented to the rats 15 minutes before the training session on all four days. Upon monitoring the behavior of the rats, researchers suggested that the learning abilities of the rats appeared improved with each presentation of the peptide, as the number of errors reduced, and the number of correct solutions increased.
Selank Peptide and Immunomodulation
This clinical study (12) was conducted on subjects suffering from GAD and neurasthenia, who received Selank peptide for 14 days. After the study, the peripheral blood samples were collected and analyzed. The analytical results suggested peak elevation in the levels of IL-6 cytokine and changes in the Th1 and Th2 cytokine ratio, all of which regulate the immune system.
Selank Peptide and Withdrawal
In this study (13), rats were infused with 10% ethanol as their sole source of fluid for 24 weeks. Consequently, these rats were experimentally induced with alcohol withdrawal symptoms, once the ethanol drip was stopped. The rats were then given Selank peptide, to study its potential impact on the withdrawal symptoms. After 48 hours, researchers reported that the alcohol withdrawal symptoms appeared to have reduced, based on the results of their social interaction and maze tests.
Selank Peptide and Cardiovascular Activity
In this study (14), Selank was presented to cats. The main goal of this study was to examine the cardiovascular and respiratory potential of the peptide in animals. Upon presentation of the peptide, it was reported by the researchers that there appeared to be a 32% decrease in the arterial blood pressure within 3 minutes of peptide presence. What’s more, the peptide also possibly induced a 24% increase in the cerebral blood flow within the first 10 minutes, which then slowly decreased up to its optimal levels. Selank was not reported to have induced any action on the respiratory system or the heart rate.
Selank Peptide and Weight, Cholesterol
In this study (15), 37 rats were first exposed to a high fat diet for 6 consecutive weeks, until the weights of rats were up to 280 to 300 grams. Later, these rats were divided into two groups, where the control group that was given sodium chloride and the experiment group that was presented with Selank peptide. Also, a group of normal control rats were used for this study that were not presented with either of the agents but were simply monitored for the purpose of this study. Upon analysis, it was suggested by the researchers that the Selank group exhibited apparently decreased levels of cholesterol and fat by up to 25% to 58%. The fat metabolism rate of the Selank group also was reportedly improved, and was eventually the same rate as that in the normal control rats. Upon weight determination of the rats, it was noted that the control group showed an average weight gain of 40g throughout the study, whereas the experiment group maintained the same weight throughout the study, with gradual weight reduction upon peptide presentation.
Selank peptide is available for research and laboratory purposes only. Please review and adhere to our Terms and Conditions before ordering.
1. Smitha Bhandari, MD. Generalized Anxiety Disorder. September 02, 2020. https://www.webmd.com/anxiety-panic/guide/generalized-anxiety-disorder
2. Najjar VA. Tuftsin, a natural activator of phagocyte cells: an overview. Ann N Y Acad Sci. 1983;419:1-11. doi: 10.1111/j.1749-6632.1983.tb37086.x. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/6370072/
3. NAJJAR, V., NISHIOKA, K. ‘Tuftsin’: a Natural Phagocytosis Stimulating Peptide. Nature 228, 672–673 (1970). https://doi.org/10.1038/228672a0
4. Fridkin M, Stabinsky Y, Zakuth V, Spirer Z. Tuftsin and some analogs: synthesis and interaction with human polymorphonuclear leukocytes. Biochim Biophys Acta. 1977 Jan 24;496(1):203-11. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/576412/
5. Kozlovskaya MM, Kozlovskii II, Val’dman EA, Seredenin SB. Selank and short peptides of the tuftsin family in the regulation of adaptive behavior in stress. Neurosci Behav Physiol. 2003 Nov;33(9):853-60. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/14969422/
6. Elena Filatova et al., GABA, Selank, and Olanzapine Affect the Expression of Genes Involved in GABAergic Neurotransmission in IMR-32 Cells. https://doi.org/10.3389/fphar.2017.00089
7. Volkova, A., Shadrina, M., Kolomin, T., Andreeva, L., Limborska, S., Myasoedov, N., & Slominsky, P. (2016). Selank Administration Affects the Expression of Some Genes Involved in GABAergic Neurotransmission. Frontiers in pharmacology, 7, 31. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4757669/
8. T.A Kolomin et al., Transcriptomic Response of Rat Hippocampus and Spleen Cells to Single and Chronic Administration of the Peptide Selank. June 2, 2009. https://www.researchgate.net/profile/Timur-Kolomin/publication/43097180
9. Zozulia AA, Neznamov GG, Siuniakov TS, Kost NV, Gabaeva MV, Sokolov OIu, Serebriakova EV, Siranchieva OA, Andriushenko AV, Telesheva ES, Siuniakov SA, Smulevich AB, Miasoedov NF, Seredenin SB. Efficacy and possible mechanisms of action of a new peptide anxiolytic selank in the therapy of generalized anxiety disorders and neurasthenia. Zh Nevrol Psikhiatr Im S S Korsakova. 2008;108(4):38-48. Russian. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/18454096/
10. Medvedev VE, Tereshchenko ON, Israelian AIu, Chobanu IK, Kost NV, Sokolov OIu, Miasoedov NF. A comparison of the anxiolytic effect and tolerability of selank and phenazepam in the treatment of anxiety disorders. Zh Nevrol Psikhiatr Im S S Korsakova. 2014;114(7):17-22. Russian. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/25176261/
11. Kozlovskii II, Danchev ND. The optimizing action of the synthetic peptide Selank on a conditioned active avoidance reflex in rats. Neurosci Behav Physiol. 2003 Sep;33(7):639-43. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/14552529/
12. Uchakina ON, Uchakin PN, Miasoedov NF, Andreeva LA, Shcherbenko VE, Mezentseva MV, Gabaeva MV, Sokolov OIu, Zozulia AA, Ershov FI. Immunomodulatory effects of selank in patients with anxiety-asthenic disorders. Zh Nevrol Psikhiatr Im S S Korsakova. 2008;108(5):71-5. Russian. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/18577961/
13. Kolik LG, Nadorova AV, Kozlovskaya MM. Efficacy of peptide anxiolytic selank during modeling of withdrawal syndrome in rats with stable alcoholic motivation. Bull Exp Biol Med. 2014 May;157(1):52-5. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/24913576/
14. Gan’shina TS, Kozlovskiĭ II. [Effects of the new peptide anxiolytic drug selank on the cardiovascular system functioning and respiration in cats]. Eksp Klin Farmakol. 2005 Jul-Aug;68(4):33-5. Russian. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/16193654/
15. N.F. Mjasoedov et al, The Influence of Selank on the Parameters of the Hemostasis System, Lipid Profile, and Blood Sugar Level in the Course of Experimental Metabolic Syndrome. April 14, 2014.
16. Otvos, L., Jr, & Wade, J. D. (2014). Current challenges in peptide-based drug discovery. Frontiers in chemistry, 2, 62. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4126357/
17. Boĭko SS, Zherdev VP, Dvorianinov AA, Seredenin SB, Alfeeva LIu, Andreeva LA, Bezmenova SV, Miasoedov NF. The pharmacokinetics and metabolism of heptapeptide–a prospective synthetic analog of tuftsin with psychostimulating action in rats. Eksp Klin Farmakol. 1998 Sep-Oct;61(5):42-5. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/9854633/
18. Vasil’eva EV, Kondrakhin EA, Salimov RM, Kovalev GI. Comparison of pharmacological effects of heptapeptide selank after intranasal and intraperitoneal administration to balb/c and c57bl/6 mice. Eksp Klin Farmakol. 2016;79(9):3-11. Russian. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/29787664/
NOTE: These products are intended for laboratory research use only. Selank for sale 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.