Kent Probst, BS, MEd
Kent Probst is the owner of Long Healthy Life Blog
What is PQQ?
Pyrroloquinoline quinone, or PQQ, is a vitamin-like, water-soluble nutrient found in bacteria, vegetables and fruit. It’s also known as methoxatin.
Many of the benefits of PQQ are related to the mitochondria.
Skeletal muscle, the liver and kidneys use a lot of energy, and therefore have a lot of mitochondria.
Mitochondrial function decays with age, which can lead to the dysfunction of organs like the muscles, liver and kidneys.
PQQ plays an integral role in the health of mitochondria, which may be the reason it’s becoming a popular nutritional supplement.
PQQ Health Benefits
1. Mitochondria support
In a published study of mice, PQQ improved mitophagy, or the clearing out of damaged mitochondria in skeletal muscle. Without mitophagy, cells cannot survive.
2. Antioxidant benefits
As an antioxidant, PQQ showed promise in people given 20mg orally, suggesting increased cerebral blood flow. The subjects given PQQ scored significantly higher on a cognitive function test, as opposed to those who receive a placebo.
3. Treatment for Diabetes
Insulin sensitivity, blood sugar and insulin levels were all significantly ameliorated in obese rats given PQQ compared to untreated obese rats (1).
4. Macular Degeneration
Among human organ donors who had macular degeneration, retinal pigment epithelial cells were treated with PQQ. The treated cells had a 50% to 350% improvement in mitochondrial function, compared to 5% to 25% improvement in the other half.
5. Preventing Liver and Kidney Damage
PQQ inhibited oxidative stress in rats with diabetic nephropathy. The rats treated with PQQ had improved renal structural damage and improved functional damage, whereas the kidney function of the untreated rats significantly decreased and renal structure was disordered.
In a study of the effects of PQQ on fatty liver disease in chickens, the administration of PQQ suppressed the progression of metabolic dysfunction-associated fatty liver disease and improved lipid metabolism by enhancing mitochondrial biogenesis.
6. Protection of the Central Nervous System
PQQ promoted mitochondrial biogenesis in mice with Parkinson’s disease (PD) via AMPK activation. “PQQ treatment dose-dependently alleviated the locomotor deficits and nigral dopaminergic neuron loss in PD mice.
In a mice study, PQQ inhibited the amyloid fibril formation of the amyloid protein, amyloid beta, associated with the development of Alzheimer’s disease.
The authors of the study proposed that “PQQ may become a leading anti-neurodegenerative compound in the treatment of neurodegenerative diseases.”
8. Promotion of Joint Health
PQQ showed promise in protecting joint cartilage. Chondrocytes, or cartilage cells, had decreased mitochondrial dysfunction from the inflammatory cytokine tumor necrosis factor alpha when treated with PQQ.
9. Advancement of Longevity
Human lung cells pretreated with PQQ were less senescent after being exposed to TNF-alpha compared to the untreated cells. Senescent cells are a significant factor linked to disease and advanced aging.
PQQ Side Effects
As of this writing, there are no known side effects of PQQ, based on the short term animal or human studies that have been done so far.
Also, there are no reported allergic reactions or reports of toxicity.
Benefits of Taking a PQQ Supplement
It’s important to maintain healthy mitochondria throughout our lives. One way of doing that is to make sure we get plenty of PQQ.
PQQ is present in a wide range of foods, but the amount in food is negligible compared to the amount you’ll get in a supplement.
If you want to reap the benefits of PQQ, you may want to consider taking it in supplement form.
Available PQQ supplements range from 5mg to 40mg. Some supplements combine PQQ with CoEnzyme Q10, so you don’t have to take two different supplements.
If you have health concerns, consult your physician before taking PQQ.
PQQ continues to show great promise for health and longevity.
Disclaimer: This post includes affiliate links, and I will earn a commission if you purchase through these links. Please note that I’ve linked to these products purely because I recommend them and they are from companies I trust. There is no additional cost to you.
- Devasani K, Kaul R, Majumdar A. Supplementation of pyrroloquinoline quinone with atorvastatin augments mitochondrial biogenesis and attenuates low grade inflammation in obese rats. Eur J Pharmacol. 2020 Aug 15;881:173273.