Coenzyme Q(10) supplementation ameliorates inflammatory signaling and oxidative stress associated with strenuous exercise

Eur J Nutr. 2012 Oct;51(7):791-9. doi: 10.1007/s00394-011-0257-5. Epub 2011 Oct 12.


Background: Exhausting exercise induces muscle damage associated with high production of free radicals and pro-inflammatory mediators.

Aim: The objective of this study was to determine for the first time and simultaneously whether oral coenzyme Q(10) (CoQ(10)) supplementation can prevent over-expression of inflammatory mediators and oxidative stress associated with strenuous exercise.

Methods: The participants were classified in two groups: CoQ(10) group (CG) and placebo group (PG). The physical test consisted in a constant run (50 km) that combined several degrees of high effort (mountain run and ultra-endurance), in permanent climbing.

Results: Exercise was associated with an increase in TNF-α, IL-6, 8-hydroxy-2'-deoxyguanosine (8-OHdG), and isoprostane levels, revealing the degree of inflammation and oxidative stress induced. Oral supplementation of CoQ(10) during exercise was efficient reducing oxidative stress (decreased membrane hydroperoxides, 8-OHdG and isoprostanes generation, increased catalase, and total antioxidant status), which would lead to the maintenance of the cell integrity. Data obtained also indicate that CoQ(10) prevents over-expression of TNF-α after exercise, together with an increase in sTNF-RII that limits the pro-inflammatory actions of TNF. Moreover, CoQ(10) supplementation reduced creatinine production.

Conclusions: CoQ(10) supplementation before strenuous exercise decreases the oxidative stress and modulates the inflammatory signaling, reducing the subsequent muscle damage.

MeSH terms

  • 8-Hydroxy-2'-Deoxyguanosine
  • Administration, Oral
  • Adult
  • Antioxidants / metabolism
  • Athletes
  • Catalase / metabolism
  • Deoxyguanosine / analogs & derivatives
  • Deoxyguanosine / blood
  • Dietary Supplements*
  • Humans
  • Inflammation / drug therapy*
  • Inflammation Mediators / antagonists & inhibitors
  • Inflammation Mediators / metabolism
  • Interleukin-6 / blood
  • Isoprostanes / blood
  • Male
  • Oxidative Stress / drug effects*
  • Running / physiology*
  • Signal Transduction / drug effects
  • Tumor Necrosis Factor-alpha / blood
  • Ubiquinone / administration & dosage
  • Ubiquinone / analogs & derivatives*


  • Antioxidants
  • Inflammation Mediators
  • Interleukin-6
  • Isoprostanes
  • Tumor Necrosis Factor-alpha
  • Ubiquinone
  • 8-Hydroxy-2'-Deoxyguanosine
  • Catalase
  • coenzyme Q10
  • Deoxyguanosine