If you read part one you know I am discussing the mystery steroid in the product known as “Super DMZ”. I have to warn you, part 2 is going to be a little technical. I will summarize what is important though in simple language at the end.
The ingredient is referred to most commonly as Ethylene Deltenone,and it is a readily available synthetic intermediate used in china for manufacture of some progesterone derivative drugs. What it is, in organic chem speak, is the 3,3-ethylene ketal of estra-4,9-diene-3,17-dione. Estra-4,9-diene-3,17-dione, as you may know, was a popular prohormone ingredient that was commonly (and somewhat erroneously) referred to as “tren”. “Tren” was made a controlled substance (anabolic steroid) in 2010 as the result of an administrative act by the Department of Health and Human Services.
So what is a “ketal”? A ketal is a derivative of a ketone. Chemists use certain derivatives of ketones to protect them during synthesis procedures. For instance they may want to change another part of the molecule using some reaction but they can’t do that without messing up the ketone. So they first change the ketone into a derivative that is impervious to the procedure they want to perform on the other part of the molecule. Then, after the reaction is completed, the protecting group is removed (hydrolyzed) and the ketone is reformed. Examples of ketone protecting groups other than ketals are thioketals, acetals, oximes, semicarbazones, and many others.
[Note: this topic of ketone protecting groups has ramifications that go beyond just this product, and I will be discussing that later].
Check out the structures below. On the left is Ethylene Deltenone. On the right is what happens when you hydrolyze the ketal protecting group in Ethylene Dienone. You get “tren” (plus an equivalent of ethylene glycol). You may be wondering why the double bonds in Ethylene Dienone are shifted to different postitions. This is just something which commonly happens when ketals are formed from ketones with conjugated double bonds (alpha-enones). I don’t recall the explanation for this nor would it serve us to explain it here if I did (since this article is already far too technical).
So this is the question. We know that Ethylene Dienone is hydrolyzed by chemical means (acid does this readily). But will it hydrolyze in a similar manner in the body? I looked into this and I did find research on other steroid ethylene ketals. This research indicated that indeed ketals do readily hydrolyze in the body back to ketones (perhaps via enzymes). The second question is whether or not the double bond isomerization back to 4,9 will occur with in-vivo hydrolysis. This I am not entirely sure about. It may not. Acid may be required to catalyze this double bond shift and it is possible that in-vivo hydrolysis lacks this acid component. In that case you would be left with the double bonds in the 5(10),9(11) configuration – which is a configuration that I doubt is associated with much physiological activity.
What do we have here?
What we have here is (possibly) a “tren” pro-drug – a chemical derivative of “tren” that might convert to “tren” in the body. But didn’t they ban all chemical pro-drug derivatives with the latest update to the anabolic steroid control act back in 2010? Actually they didn’t. And although I didn’t say anything about it at the time I had to shake my head in disbelief when I read the provision in that law where they thought they were covering their assess by making all hydrolyzable chemical derivatives of AAS illegal. I shook my head because they only covered derivatives of alcohol groups – specifically esters and ethers. They completely neglected the whole slew of ketone derivative possibilities. I always thought in the back of my mind that someday someone would figure this out and make a ketal or hydrazine or whatever of a controlled steroid. Finally it appears someone has done just that (although I doubt IronMagLabs did this intentionally – rather I think they just stumbled into this).
Bottom line then is that this is the first ketone derivative of a controlled anabolic steroid to hit the market. Whether it fully converts into its original compound via double bond isomerization in-vivo is still up for debate. But this whole situation is much larger than “super dmz” because now that this has been done, and I have shined a big search light on it, we may expect to see nandrolone 3-oxime, or dihydrotestosterone-3,3-dimethyl acetal, or trenbolone-3-semicarbazone – all easily synthesized derivatives of controlled anabolic steroids that can slip through yet another loophole due to an inexplicable oversight by legislators.
When will this silliness end?