In Part 1 of this series, we reviewed the discovery of coenzyme Q10
and the initial studies that established CoQ10 as a very
effective natural therapy for the prevention and treatment
of cardiovascular disease. In addition to being a powerful
antioxidant, early studies also revealed that CoQ10 is an
essential for the generation of cellular energy (ATP) within the
mitochondria of every cell in the body with the exception of red
Coenzyme Q10's dual functions (antioxidant and energy
production) make it essential for the health of virtually all human
tissues and organs. As a fat-soluble antioxidant, it protects
proteins (like LDL-cholesterol), enzymes, fats (all cell walls/
membranes) and especially DNA from free radical damage. In
terms of energy production, areas of the body with high rates
of metabolic activity (high energy demands) such as the heart,
lungs, kidneys, brain and immune system are
especially sensitive to low levels of CoQ10.1
Coenzyme Q10 and Cancer/History
Early CoQ10-cell culture studies revealed that
coenzyme Q10 resulted in an 80 percent
reduction in the growth of cancer cells
within 90 days.2 Animal studies published
in the late 1990s reported that treatment
with coenzyme Q10 resulted in suppression
of tumor growth, reduced size and/or
shrinkage of tumors and increased survival
In the late 1980s, Dr. K. Folkers began
analyzing coenzyme Q10 levels in cancer
patients. His testing revealed that virtually
all cancer patients have CoQ10 levels that are
extremely low. In 1994, Drs. K. Lockwood and
K. Folkers reported treating 32 "high-risk"
breast cancer patients with antioxidants,
fatty acids, and 90 mg. of CoQ10.
Six of the 32 women showed partial
tumor regression. In one woman, the dosage
of CoQ10 was increased to 390 mg. In one month, her tumor
was no longer palpable and in another month, mammography
confirmed the absence of tumor. Encouraged, another case
having a verified breast tumor, after non-radical surgery and
with verified residual tumor in the tumor bed was then treated
with 300 mg. CoQ10. After three months, the patient was in
excellent clinical condition and there was no residual tumor
In 1996, William Judy and Dr. Folkers reported the results of
a CoQ10-prostate cancer study. Their results revealed that men
with prostate cancer who were treated with 600 mg of CoQ10
daily achieved dramatic reductions in both PSA and tumor size.7
An interesting aspect of this study is that the men did not
begin to show any signs of response until about 90 days into
Several clinical trials have also reported that coenzyme Q10
substantially protects against and/or reduces side effects in
patients undergoing various forms of chemotherapy.
A New Understanding of Cancer: In healthy cells, mitochondria
utilize oxygen to produce energy. In cancer cells, energy
production switches from away from oxygen and instead begins
to utilize glucose/sugar for energy production. This was first
discovered and explained by Otto Warburg, MD. Warburg was
awarded the Nobel Prize in 1931 for discovering that cancer
cells are low in oxygen because cellular respiration has switched
from using oxygen to the fermentation of sugar. To summarize,
healthy cells utilize oxygen to produce energy whereas cancer
cells begin to utilize sugar for energy production. It is damage
to mitochondria that causes this change in energy production.9
"Cancer as a Metabolic Disease: On the Origin, Management
and Prevention of Cancer" is the title of a very important book
written by Thomas N. Seyfried, MD. Dr. Seyfried advances Otto
Warburg's theory of cancer in a way that revolutionizes our
understanding of cancer. Up until now, most scientists have
assumed that cancer is a genetic disease resulting from DNA
Instead, Seyfried teaches us that cancer is a metabolic
disease due to mitochondrial damage, which hinders the ability
of cells to produce adequate energy. This causes the metabolic
shift from oxygen to glucose for energy production, which is the
hallmark of cancer cell metabolism.
Coenzyme Q10/Cancer Answer: Drs. Warburg and Seyfried did
not explain coenzyme Q10's role in protecting mitochondria
from free radical damage and in mitochondrial energy
production. In this article, we will explain how CoQ10 deficiency
results in mitochondrial damage that progresses to metabolic
changes in energy production, which results in the origin and
progression of cancer.
The Miracle Nutrient: Coenzyme Q10. Coenzyme Q10 plays
two critical roles in this scenario. First, CoQ10 is required in
several steps for energy production within mitochondria. Thus,
coenzyme Q10 deficiency impairs mitochondria's ability to use
oxygen for energy production. This causes a shift to using sugar,
which characterizes cancer cell metabolism.
Secondly, CoQ10 is a powerful antioxidant that neutralizes
free radicals. This is especially important in mitochondria,
because more free radicals are generated in mitochondria during
the process of energy production than anywhere else in the
body. Thus, coenzyme Q10 deficiency is a "double whammy" in
that it weakens mitochondria's ability to produce energy (like an
engine running out of gas) while also accelerating free radical
damage to mitochondrial DNA (causing damage to the engine
so it cannot function).
Causes of Coenzyme Q10 Deficiency: The synthesis of coenzyme
Q10 in the body is a complex process that requires multiple
nutrients as cofactors. Over the past 80 years there has been a
dramatic and continual decline in the nutritional content of our
commercial/agricultural food supply. Reasons for this decline
a) Rising levels of atmospheric CO2 is causing
reductions in the mineral content of plants.10
b) Massive use of pesticides and herbicides on
agricultural crops, which kills the microbiome (bacteria)
in the soil. Bacteria in the soil are necessary for the
breakdown of organic matter and the delivery of nutrients
into the plant.11
c) A high percentage of the food that Americans
consume are highly processes. Food processing results
in substantial losses of nutritional content of the foods.12
d) In "The Drug-Induced Nutrient Depletion Handbook,"
Ross Pelton lists multiple reports following classes
of commonly prescribed drugs that cause depletion
of coenzyme Q10: statin cholesterol-lowering drugs,
oral contraceptives, hormone replacement therapy
(HRT), drugs for diabetes, tricyclic antidepressants,
major tranquilizers, beta-blockers, thiazide diuretics
and vasodilators.13 Many more drugs probably deplete
CoQ10, but just haven't been tested yet for their effect on
e) Increasing age, after 20 years of age, reduces CoQ10
synthesis in man (International CoQ10 Association).
Other Therapeutic Applications: In addition to
cardiovascular disease and cancer, studies have
also been published showing that CoQ10 can
provide therapeutic benefits in the following conditions:
diabetes, radiation injury, periodontal disease, gastric ulcers,
mitochondrial disorders, migraine headaches, obesity, kidney
failure, acquired immune deficiency (AIDS), Parkinson's
disease and Alzheimer's disease.
CoQ10 and Life Extension: In addition to the many ways CoQ10
can help prevent and treat many disease conditions, it is also
one of the most important nutrients for life extension and
When you understand CoQ10's critical roles in protecting
mitochondria and producing energy, it seems obvious that it
would slow down the onset of chronic degenerative diseases
and increase longevity with healthy additional years. Imagine a
growing number of vibrant, energetic centenarians.
Coenzyme Q10 Doubles Lifespan in Mice: Emile Bliznakov, MD,
who wrote "The Miracle Nutrient: Coenzyme Q10," conducted
the following experiment. Dr. Bliznakov started his experiment
with 100 "old" female white mice that were 16 to 18 months
of age. One week for mice is roughly equivalent to one year of
human life. Thus, the mice were in their 60s to 70s in human
terms and already beginning to show some signs of decreased
immunity and aging bodily functions.14
These old mice were divided into two groups of 50 and
maintained on optimally nutritious diets. One group were
controls while the second group were regularly given doses of
- At 28 weeks after the beginning of the study, 70 percent of the control mice had died compared to only 40 percent of the CoQ10-treated mice.
- At 36 weeks, 100 percent of the control mice were dead while about 40 percent of the CoQ10-treated mice were still alive and active with most not showing the normal signs of physical deterioration that are commonly associated with advanced age.
- At week 56, 10 percent of the CoQ10-treated mice were still thriving (2X longer than these mice would normally be expected to survive beyond the beginning of the experiment).
- At the 80th week (remember the last control mouse died at week 36), four mice were still alive; at the 82nd week, the last mouse died. In human terms, this is a life span of roughly 130 years of age!
Dr. Bliznakov explained the following remarkable visual
differences between the two groups of mice towards the end
when some of the control mice were still alive. The fur on the
control mice that had not received CoQ10 had lost its sheen,
became dull, coarse, matted and on some mice, clumps of
hair had fallen out, leaving bald patchy spots and they were
also very listless and spent most of their time lying around
and not socializing. On the other hand, the fur in the coats of
the CoQ10-treated mice remained smooth and soft, and they
maintained a much greater level of activity and socialization.
Another interesting feature was the fact that the CoQ10-treated
mice still engaged in sexual activity whereas sexual activity had
stopped among the control mice months earlier.
Human clinical life extension trials will be conducted in
our lifetime. Several studies have reported CoQ10's therapeutic
benefits in a wide range of disease states. This certainly suggests
that CoQ10 enhances and extends life and improves quality of
life. Three rather large clinical studies support the influence
of CoQ10 on longevity. The first was a 30-year study that was
completed by Dr. Folkers and Judy. In this study 500 congestive
heart failure patients were divided into two groups. One group
was treated with 200 mg CoQ10 daily and conventional therapy.
The other group was treated with conventional therapy only. The
conventional therapy group were all deceased in seven years. In
the CoQ10 group 42 percent were still living at seven years. At
15 years, 24 percent were still living. At 30 years two individuals
were still living. Both were in their late 90's and in good health.
Both had been on CoQ10 for over 35 years and were only on a
diuretic and CoQ10.
Other long-term studies have been conducted by Dr. Alihanen
and his group in Sweden. In this study thousands of elderly
patients were supplemented with CoQ10 for 10 years. The 10-
year survival rate was 45 percent. In another study in Class
III and IV congestive heart failure conducted by Dr. Sven
Mortensen and his group showed a two-year survival compared
to the control group of 48 percent. The morbidity was reduced
by 52 percent and the classification of heart failure was reduced
to Class II or I. The acute hospitalizations were reduced by 52
percent (Q-Symbio multicenter clinical trial 2014. A.J. Clinical
Ubiquinone/Ubiquinol: After the discovery of coenzyme Q10
(ubiquinone) in 1956, clinical trials began in the mid-1960s. In
the ensuing half-century, the vast majority of clinical trials have
been conducted with the ubiquinone, which is the oxidized form
In 2006, the Kaneka Corporation in Japan began producing
and marketing the ubiquinol (reduced) form of CoQ10 after
learning how to stabilize the compound and keep it from
oxidizing back to ubiquinone. Kaneka claims that the ubiquinol/
reduced form of CoQ10 is more active and better absorbed than
ubiquinone. This has been a very successful marketing strategy
for Kaneka, but actually, the claims are not scientifically correct.
There are several issues to discuss when confronting
Kaneka's claims that ubiquinol is superior to ubiquinone. Many
companies are private labeling Kaneka's ubiquinol CoQ10,
which are substantially more expensive. However, studies reveal
that when Kaneka's reduced CoQ10 is taken orally, it rapidly gets
converted into ubiquinone in the stomach. Hence, people are
paying more for ubiquinol, which actually gets converted back
into ubiquinone when taken orally.
For a full explanation of the issues and controversies
between ubiquinone and ubiquinol, read a report titled Coenzyme
Q10 Facts or Fabrications by William Judy, Ph.D. Dr. Judy has
been educating people around the world about the importance
and benefits of coenzyme Q10 for over 40 years. He has also
conducted CoQ10 clinical trials and served as a consultant for
many companies on CoQ10 product formulations. Hence, he is
well qualified to address both the scientific and the marketing
issues related to the ubiquinone/ubiquinol controversy.
The Recrystallization Problem: Many CoQ10 products on the
market have abysmally low rates of absorption. Here's the
problem. The melting point of CoQ10 is about ten degrees
higher than human body temperature, which is 98.60F. Hence,
most coenzyme Q10 products crystallize in the softgel capsule
after cooling to room temperature. Even CoQ10 products
that are dissolved in oil by heating to 50 degrees centigrade
recrystallize in the softgel capsule when cooled to room
temperature. Crystals consist of many millions of single CoQ10
molecules. Humans can't absorb crystals. We can only absorb
single molecules of any substance. This explains why CoQ10
products on the market do not achieve significant increases in plasma CoQ10 levels compared to that of the pure crystal free CoQ10 products.
Crystal Free Coenzyme Q10:
Crystal free CoQ10 is the new era in the CoQ10 industry. The
dry powder CoQ10 entered the marketplace in 1974 as a comp
softgel product. These were crystalline CoQ10 in an oil and water
base. When CoQ10 was deregulated from a drug to a natural
product in Japan the consumer market in Japan increased so
significantly that the CoQ10 producers in Japan could not meet
the world demand. The price of CoQ10 increased from $800 to
$4500 a kilogram. In the USA almost no one could afford the
CoQ10. Thus, the need for a more highly absorbable CoQ10 that
could offset the poorly absorbed CoQ10 and its high price.
Three companies in the USA took the challenge and started
developing a crystal free CoQ10 product between 2002 and
2006. All three products had different solvents and were crystal
free at an encapsulation temperature of 50 degrees centigrade.
Their single dose absorption was between six and eight percent
of a 100 mg dose. However, when the capsules cooled to room
temperature, two of these products recrystallized and the
absorption and steady state bioavailability was no better than a
crystalline CoQ10 in a lipid based softgel.
The higher absorbable CoQ10 and steady state bioavailable
allows the consumer to attain the health benefits for the clinical
conditions describes in Part I of this series. Two of the developed
products were unstable and recrystallized in the softgel capsule.
One remained viable as a pure crystal free product.
A crystal free product at body temperature manufactured
in Scandinavia was used in a major long-term clinical trial in
Sweden. This trial has continued for over 10 years in thousands
of patients (Ailhagen Sweden). In this study, the 10-year survival
was 50 percent. In a multi-center study in 500 class III and IV
congestive heart failure patients the 250 in patients on CoQ10
and conventional therapy has a heart failure mortality rate 56
percent less than the control group on conventional therapy
only. In this study, the morbidity was 48 percent less and the
degree of failure was 58 percent less than the control group.
The CoQ10 treated patients admitted to the hospital was 43
percent less than the conventionally treated patients (Q-symbio
trial, Mortensen. Am J Clinical Cardiology. 2014). The new era
of crystal free CoQ10 has proven that it has the potential to be
effective in the management of congestive heart failure, age
related degenerative diseases such as cancers, chronic fatigue,
Parkinson's disease and high blood pressure.
The newest and most stable of the crystal free products, and
the new therapeutic era for CoQ10 in the USA is marketed by the
Cyto Health Company. It will soon be in the USA marketplace.
For more information please call 941-920-2824.
- Saini R. Coenzyme Q10: The essential nutrient. J Pharm Bioallied Sci. 2011 Jul-Sep;3(3):466-467.
- Bliznakov E. (1986) "The Miracle Nutrient: Coenzyme Q10." New York. Bantam Books.
- 1995 Merck
- 1996 Duke Univ.
- 1997 North Carolina Univ
- Lockwood K, et al. Partial and complete regression of breast cancer in patients in relation to dosage of coenzyme Q10. Biochem Biophys Res Commun. 1994 Mar 30;199(3):1504–8.
- 1996 Judy and Folkers
- 1984 Judy and Toth
- John AP. Dysfunctional mitochondria, not oxygen insufficiency, cause cancer cells to produce inordinate amounts of lactic acid: the impact of this on the treatment of cancer. Med Hypotheses. 2001;57:429–31
- Weigel, H. Plant quality declines as CO2 levels rise. eLife 2014;3:e03233.
- Aktar, W, et al. Impact of pesticides use in agriculture: their benefits and hazards. Interdiscip Toxicol. 2009 Mar;2(1):1–12.
- Karmas E, Harris RS. (Dec. 2012) Nutritional Evaluation of Food Processing. Springer Science & Business Media
- Pelton R, et al. (2001) "The Drug-Induced Nutrient Depletion Handbook." Macedonia, Ohio. Lexi-Comp.
- Bliznakov E. (1986) "The Miracle Nutrient: Coenzyme Q10." New York. Bantam Books.