The Health Benefits of Adenosine Monophosphate

Little Evidence for Potential Health Benefits

In This Article

Adenosine monophosphate, also known as adenylic acid or AMP, is a naturally-occurring compound found throughout the human body and in all plants and animals.

Our bodies produce AMP in the process of creating adenosine triphosphate (ATP). You might remember ATP from chemistry classes, as it’s a major source of energy used throughout the body.

As a supplement, adenosine monophosphate has been sold by some promoters as a sublingual (under-the-tongue) spray that can support weight loss, boost your metabolism, and increase energy. However, it’s important to note that none of these claims are backed by scientific evidence.

In fact, AMP, along with all other forms of adenosine, was removed from the market as a drug by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in 1999 after it was found not to be safe or effective. Because supplements are not regulated by the FDA, though, AMP remains available.

Here’s everything we know so far about the potential health benefits of this intriguing compound.

Adenosine monophosphate molecule
MOLEKUUL / Science Photo Library / Getty Images

Health Benefits

In contrast to much of the misinformation circulating online about adenosine monophosphate, little research has been done on its purported health-promoting benefits.

All in all, there have only been a handful of small and dated studies on how supplementing with AMP may affect the human body. According to limited research, AMP could have effects for the following conditions.

Cold Sores

When administered via injection, AMP could be helpful for the treatment of recurring cold sores, per a small study in 1979.  

Shingles

Another small study in 1985 found that AMP injections resulted in greater pain reduction and speedier skin healing in patients with shingles (herpes zoster infection) compared to placebo.

Leg Sores

For patients with venous leg ulcers, or sores caused by poor circulation, AMP injections may help relieve fluid retention, swelling, itchiness, and redness, according to a 1958 study.

Porphyria Cutanea Tarda

When taken in oral form for at least one month, AMP seemed to reduce or even completely alleviate the symptoms of some people with excessive sensitivity to the sun (photosensitivity) due to a condition called porphyria cutanea tarda, per a 1974 study in The Lancet.

While there have been some promising standalone studies on the use of AMP as a supplement, more evidence is needed before it can be considered a go-to treatment for any of the above. Furthermore, it is not known whether health benefits imparted from an AMP injection might translate to an oral supplement. 

Possible Side Effects

The few studies that have explored AMP supplementation in humans have not revealed any concerning side effects. That said, some researchers have suggested that AMP supplements could possibly increase levels of adenosine in our bodies and in turn decrease immunity.

Since little is known about the potential risks of taking AMP supplements, it’s best to avoid taking them if you’re pregnant or breastfeeding. Otherwise, make sure to talk to a doctor or pharmacist before you consider adding AMP to your treatment regimen.  

Dosage and Preparation

Currently, adenosine monophosphate supplements are available in the form of an under-the-tongue spray. There are no recommended dosages or preparation methods for AMP supplements. Again, keep in mind that few studies have been done on oral AMP supplementation, so it’s hard to know how it might affect you. 

What to Look For

Most often, adenosine monophosphate is sold in the form of an under-the-tongue spray as a weight-loss supplement. Keep in mind, though, the claim that AMP may aid in weight loss—among other health benefits—is not backed by any scientific evidence.

In general, it’s important to scan supplement labels for any claims that a product may cure or treat a disease. Supplements producers cannot legally make these claims, per the FDA.

Because so little is known about the potential benefits or harms of AMP supplements, be sure to talk to your doctor or a pharmacist before you consider taking one. They can help you make the best decision for you based on your medical history.

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