Can Co-Q10 reverse statin induced mitochondrial dysfunction?
The statin related muscle side effects have been linked to impaired mitochondrial function caused by a depletion of downstream metabolites in the cholesterol synthesis pathway. In this experimental design study healthy volunteers were treated with simvastatin 40 mg for 8 weeks. After 4 weeks subjects were randomized to ubiquinol (Co-enzyme Q10) 300mg/day. Mitochondrial (dys)function was evaluated by measuring phosphocreatine recovery time (τ-PCr) using phosphorous Magnetic Resonance Spectroscopy (31PMRS) after in-magnet exercise. All participants showed a mean increase in τ-PCr of 15.2% (2.5–29.4%; P = 0.018), compared to baseline. At study completion the τ-PCr further increased in the placebo group: 37.27 s; a mean increase of 18.5% (1.1–38.9%; P = 0.037). In the ubiquinol group there was an attenuated increase in τ-PCr of 33.81 s; a mean increase of 9.1% (−7.9 to 29.2%; P = 0.31). In the placebo group the τ-PCr was significantly different from baseline at 8 weeks. No difference between baseline and 8 weeks measurements in the active treatment arm. The observed τ-PCr difference between the two groups was not statistical significant, 8.2% (−14.5 to 37.0%; P = 0.51). The authors concluded that simvastatin treatment can impair mitochondrial function even in healthy subjects and this attenuation can be partly reversed by ubiquinone 300 mg/day treatment.
Validation of a pharmacological model for mitochondrial dysfunction in healthy subjects using simvastatin: A randomized placebo-controlled proof-of-pharmacology study. 2017