From 1960 until the early 1980s, the only source of Human Growth Hormone was the brains of human cadavers, thanks to a program instituted by the National Institutes for Health (NIH). This expensive, laborious process was short-circuited in the late 1970s after the discovery that in rare instances hGH was suspected as a causative agent for Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease. The small risk of contracting the disease from hGH was quickly eliminated due to advanced purification techniques.
The Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease scare inspired among scientists and researchers a renewed commitment to develop safe methods to artificially manufacture GH. As more funds flowed to research and development, three methods were developed to utilize recombinant DNA in order to create artificial GH. Below are brief descriptions of these methods:
Inclusion Body Technology – In this process e coli bacteria are used to mass produce recombinant HGH (rHGH) in small bodies within the bacteria. Unfortunately, this technology caused allergic reactions in some individuals.
Protein Secretion – A newest and sophisticated method to mass-produce rHGH, Protein Secretion is more easily purified than Inclusion Body Technology. The rHGH produced from protein secretion is chemically identical to the HGH produced naturally within the body.
The latest and most efficient method to artificially produce HGH is known as:
Mouse cell technology – As the name implies, the HGHr is created via the insertion of DNA into mouse cells. This process carries a higher initial cost than Inclusion Body Technology and Protein Secretion Technology, but requires less manipulation and purification than the other two processes. As is the case with Protein Secretion, Mouse cell technology produces chemically perfect hGH.