Selenium and coenzyme Q10 interrelationship in cardiovascular diseases--A clinician's point of view

J Trace Elem Med Biol. 2015:31:157-62. doi: 10.1016/j.jtemb.2014.11.006. Epub 2014 Nov 27.


A short review is given of the potential role of selenium deficiency and selenium intervention trials in atherosclerotic heart disease. Selenium is an essential constituent of several proteins, including the glutathione peroxidases and selenoprotein P. The selenium intake in Europe is generally in the lower margin of recommendations from authorities. Segments of populations in Europe may thus have a deficient intake that may be presented by a deficient anti-oxidative capacity in various illnesses, in particular atherosclerotic disease, and this may influence the prognosis of the disease. Ischemic heart disease and heart failure are two conditions where increased oxidative stress has been convincingly demonstrated. Some of the intervention studies of anti-oxidative substances that have focused on selenium are discussed in this review. The interrelationship between selenium and coenzyme Q10, another anti-oxidant, is presented, pointing to a theoretical advantage in using both substances in an intervention if there are deficiencies within the population. Clinical results from an intervention study using both selenium and coenzyme Q10 in an elderly population are discussed, where reduction in cardiovascular mortality, a better cardiac function according to echocardiography, and finally a lower concentration of the biomarker NT-proBNP as a sign of lower myocardial wall tension could be seen in those on active treatment, compared to placebo.

Keywords: Coenzyme Q10; Oxidative stress; Selenium.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Antioxidants / metabolism
  • Antioxidants / therapeutic use
  • Ataxia / metabolism
  • Ataxia / physiopathology
  • Ataxia / prevention & control
  • Cardiovascular Diseases / etiology
  • Cardiovascular Diseases / metabolism
  • Cardiovascular Diseases / prevention & control*
  • Coronary Artery Disease / metabolism
  • Coronary Artery Disease / physiopathology
  • Coronary Artery Disease / prevention & control
  • Deficiency Diseases / metabolism
  • Deficiency Diseases / physiopathology
  • Deficiency Diseases / prevention & control*
  • Diet* / adverse effects
  • Dietary Supplements
  • Europe
  • Humans
  • Mitochondrial Diseases / metabolism
  • Mitochondrial Diseases / physiopathology
  • Mitochondrial Diseases / prevention & control
  • Muscle Weakness / metabolism
  • Muscle Weakness / physiopathology
  • Muscle Weakness / prevention & control
  • Nutritional Status*
  • Oxidative Stress*
  • Selenium / deficiency
  • Selenium / metabolism
  • Selenium / therapeutic use*
  • Ubiquinone / analogs & derivatives*
  • Ubiquinone / deficiency
  • Ubiquinone / metabolism
  • Ubiquinone / therapeutic use


  • Antioxidants
  • Ubiquinone
  • coenzyme Q10
  • Selenium

Supplementary concepts

  • Coenzyme Q10 Deficiency