Physiologic methyl radical donor involved in enzymatic transmethylation reactions and present in all living organisms. It possesses anti-inflammatory activity and has been used in treatment of chronic liver disease. (From Merck, 11th ed)
(3S)-5'-[(3-amino-3-Carboxypropyl)methylsulfonio]-5'-deoxyadenosine, inner salt
S-Adenosylmethionine (SAMe) is used as a drug in Europe for the treatment of depression, liver disorders, fibromyalgia, and osteoarthritis. It has also been introduced into the United States market as a dietary supplement for the support of bone and joint health, as well as mood and emotional well being.
S-adenosylmethionine is an intermediate metabolite of methionine. Its involvement in methylation assists in cellular growth and repair, maintains the phospho-bilipid layer in cell membranes. It also helps in the maintenance of the action of several hormones and neurotransmitters that affect mood. Highest concentration are found in the brain and the liver.
Mechanism of action
S-Adenosylmethionine (SAMe) is a natural substance present in the cells of the body. It is a direct metabolite of the essential amino acid L-methionine. SAMe plays a crucial biochemical role in the body by donating a one-carbon methyl group in a process called transmethylation. SAMe, formed from the reaction of L-methionine and adenosine triphosphate catalyzed by the enzyme S-adenosylmethionine synthetase, is the methyl-group donor in the biosynthesis of both DNA and RNA nucleic acids, phospholipids, proteins, epinephrine, melatonin, creatine and other molecules.