Enzyme May Help Those with Rare Genetic Condition

The coenzyme Q10, which has been promoted for heart health, may also give relief to those suffering from hereditary ataxia.

The disorder affects speech, disrupts balance, and interferes with coordination of the arms and legs. May sufferers are left severely disabled and have seizures. To date, there is no known treatment.

Researchers at Columbia University's College of Physicians and Surgeons reported that high daily doses of the antioxidant CoQ10 reversed ataxia symptoms in a group of six patients. The coenzyme appears naturally in every human cell. Some patients in the trial who had been confined to wheelchairs were able to stand and use walkers. One woman was able to work outside her home for the first time.

Participants took 300-3,000 milligrams of CoQ10 daily with no reported side effects. Although the researchers do not understand the results of the study, it is theorized that the genetic defect causing ataxia may deplete CoQ10 from cells.

The study's results have shown promise to those looking for new treatment options for Parkinson's, Alzheimer's, and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis. Researchers also suspect those suffering from these diseases have a CoQ10 deficiency.

Information from www.hivandhepatitis.com