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CoQ10 (coenzyme Q10)
Research and Studies

Co-Q-10 is involved in energy conversion in the body," explains Dr. Frederick Crane, a biochemist from Purdue University. "With low levels of the substance, muscles won't function properly, nerve impulses from the brain slow down, the activity of all body organs slow down.

Researchers at the University of California in San Diego found that CoQ10 reduces decline in neurological function and improves daily life for Parkinson's patients. However, the California study was small, and a larger trial is needed.

Roland Stocker at the Heart Research Institute in Sydney has come up with data that is relevant to the interests of neurologists. His team has shown that CoQ10 has the ability to target a nasty substance involved in oxidation known as “peroxynitrite.” What’s important for consideration here is that this substance is, for example, implicated in chronic inflammation, which is a hot topic in research on Alzheimer’s disease and other neurodegenerative disorders.

Research conducted at the Alfred Hospital in Melbourne, and funded by the National Heart Foundation of Australia, has shown that CoQ10 may be very valuable to those who undergo heart surgery. Investigators found that elderly heart bypass patients given 300 milligrams of CoQ10 (considered a high dose) recovered better and more quickly than those on placebo. The CoQ10 helped the heart muscle to pump more efficiently and to better tolerate stress. A series of studies conducted in Japan have reached similar conclusions. Additional research points to CoQ10’s ability to help reduce complications and further heart problems after a patient has experienced a first heart attack.

Our New Fountain of Youth? by William H. Lee, R. Ph., Ph.D., Lee says that COQ10 has actually been shown to have direct anti-aging effects, and may play a fundamental role in decelerating the aging process in general. As we age, the amount of COQ10 in the body diminishes; therefore, by supplementing the dwindling enzyme, Lee says that people can correct age-related declines in the immune system, and increase energy and exercise tolerance.

According to Parris M. Kidd, Ph.D., and Wolfgang Huber, Ph.D., "in the United States as many as 75 percent of people over 50 years old may be deficient in COQ10." Furthermore, it has been shown that the levels of COQ10 in human tissue decreases with age. "It has been documented that powerful antioxidants, like COQ10, can help destroy damaging free radicals and may extend the quantity and quality of life."

Huntington Study Group: In the study of 347 patients at 23 sites in North America, some patients received remacemide, some received CoQ10, some received both, and some received neither; doctors then monitored their health closely for two and one-half years. Remacemide definitely had no effect on the progression of the disease in patients in the early stages. CoQ10 showed a trend toward slowing the disease an average of 15 percent, with patients able to handle daily responsibilities such as finances and domestic chores longer; patients also retained cognitive skills longer, were able to focus their attention better, and were less depressed and irritable than those not on CoQ10. The scientific journal of the American Academy of Neurology - Karl Kieburtz, M.D., professor of neurology at the University of Rochester Medical Center.

According to the mitochondrial theory of aging, oxidative damage to the DNA of the mitochondria is the primary cause of energy decline. Supplementing with CoQ10 can protect cells from oxidative stress (Biochim Biophys Acta, 1459(2-3):397-404, 2000), thereby enhancing energy production.

"... supplemental coenzyme Q10 may be especially beneficial in treating brain-degenerative disorders e.g. Parkinson's disease." The Brain Wellness Plan by Jay Lombard, M.D., neurologist, and Carl Germano, R.D., C.N.S., L.D.N.

CoQ10 protects against a nerve poison that produces the symptoms of Parkinson's disease and causes death and destruction of essential dopamine-producing neurons. Study by Harvard Medical School researcher J.B. Schultz et al.

“(CoQ10 is)… an essential cofactor of the electron transport chain as well as a potent free-radical scavenger…. Supplementation increases both brain and brain mitochondrial concentrations, further evidence that coenzyme Q10 can exert brain-protective effects that might be useful in the treatment of neurodegenerative diseases," R.T. Matthews, et al.

Coenzyme Q10 [also called ubiquinone] is a vitamin like substance whose actions in the body resemble those of vitamin E.... This substance plays a critical role in the production of energy in every cell of the body. It aids in circulation, stimulates the immune system, increases tissue oxygenation, and has vital anti-aging effects." Prescription for Nutritional Healing (2nd ed.) James F. Balch, M.D., and Phyllis A. Balch, C.N.C.

Studies with CoQ10 have mostly focused on its role in improving certain types of cardiovascular diseases, including congestive heart failure and hypertension. However, CoQ10 benefits brain function, too. Many who take CoQ10 notice that this nutrient provides energy and mental clarity.Ray Sahelian.

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