Low COQ10 Levels Linked With Neurodegeneration

neurodegnerationA new study has found people with multiple system atrophy have low levels of CoQ10 and could be helped with supplementation of this important cell oxygenator.  Multiple system atrophy (MSA) is a rare neurological disorder.  The body’s autonomic (involuntary) functions like bladder function, digestion, heart rate and blood pressure are impaired.  MSA formerly called Shy-Drager syndrome shares many symptoms with Parkinson’s disease.

Over 40 patients with MSA, with an average age of 64, and 39 control patients, with an average age of 60, participated in this study.  Blood samples from the MSA patients where compared with the control group who had no neurodegenerative diseases.

Plasma levels of CoQ10 were significantly lower in the participants with MCA regardless of age, sex and COQ2 genotype.  COQ2 is a protein coding gene which is involved with the biosynthesis of CoQ10.  3 of the MSA participants had a mutation in their COQ2 genotype and had even lower plasma levels of CoQ10 than other individuals who did not carry the mutation.

A Phase II clinical trial is planned for the early part of next year to assess the efficacy of CoQ10 in patients with MSA.  Researchers believe that high doses of CoQ10 will be needed to deliver adequate amounts of this nutrient into the brain.  A Phase I clinical trial to determine the safety of supplementation with high dosages of CoQ10 on healthy participants has just been completed.

Prior studies suggest CoQ10 may increase blood flow to the brain.

ATP or adenosine triphosphate is the main molecule that serves as an energy source for all biochemical and physiological processes in the body. ATP is manufactured via a complex process in a tiny part of the cell known as the mitochondria. Within the mitochondria, CoQ10 plays a major role as part of the electron transport chain, the major metabolic pathway for making energy in every cell. The process of electron transport produces free radicals that may cause damage to healthy cells. CoQ10, as an antioxidant helps neutralize these free radicals helping to support continued function of the mitochondria and other important cellular components. CoQ10 has been extensively studied for its ability to support cardiovascular function.  It has been shown to help support the heart muscle, normal, healthy blood pressure a well as provide benefit to individual’s taking cholesterol lowering medications. These medications have been shown to reduce blood levels of CoQ10.







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