Skip to main page content
Access keys NCBI Homepage MyNCBI Homepage Main Content Main Navigation
, 7, 169-76

Critical Update for the Clinical Use of L-carnitine Analogs in Cardiometabolic Disorders


Critical Update for the Clinical Use of L-carnitine Analogs in Cardiometabolic Disorders

Carmen Mingorance et al. Vasc Health Risk Manag.


Acetyl-L-carnitine (ALC) and propionyl-L-carnitine (PLC) are two naturally occurring carnitine derivates formed by carnitine acetyltransferase. The beneficial cardiovascular effects of ALC and PLC have been extensively evaluated in animals and humans during the last 20 years. For instance, many clinical trials have suggested ALC and PLC as potential strategies in the management of peripheral arterial disease, heart and cerebral ischemia, and congestive heart failure. As a result, several experts have already aimed to revise the clinical evidence supporting the therapeutic use of ALC and PLC. On the basis of their conclusions, our aim was a critical review of the effectiveness of ALC and PLC in the treatment of cardiovascular diseases. Type 2 diabetes mellitus is an independent risk factor for the development of cardiovascular disease. Therefore we also describe recent studies that have addressed the emerging use of ALC and PLC amelioration of the insulin resistant state and its related morbidities.

Keywords: L-carnitine; acetyl-L-carnitine; cardiovascular diseases; insulin resistance; propionyl-L-carnitine.


Figure 1
Figure 1
L-carnitine and energy metabolism. Abbreviations: CPT, carnitine polmitoyl transferase; CRAT, Acetyl-carnitine transferase; CACT, carnitine-acylcarnitine translocase; TCA, tricarboxylic acid.

Similar articles

See all similar articles

Cited by 10 PubMed Central articles

See all "Cited by" articles


    1. Rebouche CJ. Carnitine function and requirements during the life cycle. FASEB J. 1992;6(15):3379–3386. - PubMed
    1. Demarquoy J, Georges B, Rigault C, Royer MC. Radioisotopic determination of L-carnitine content in foods commonly eaten in Western countries. Food Chem. 2004;86:137–142.
    1. Zammit VA. Carnitine acyltransferases: functional significance of subcellular distribution and membrane topology. Prog Lipid Res. 1999;38(3):199–224. - PubMed
    1. Ferri L, Valente M, Ursini F, et al. Acetyl-carnitine formation and pyruvate oxidation in mitochondria from different rat tissues. Bull Mol Biol Med. 1981;6(1–2):16–23.
    1. Lysiak W, Lilly K, DiLisa F, Toth PP, Bieber LL. Quantitation of the effect of L-carnitine on the levels of acid-soluble short-chain acyl-CoA and CoASH in rat heart and liver mitochondria. J Biol Chem. 1988;263(3):1151–1156. - PubMed

MeSH terms