Coenzyme Q (CoQ) is an essential lipid of cells present in all cellular compartments. The functions of CoQ in mitochondrial respiration and as an antioxidant are established, although the lipid likely has additional, presently unknown, roles. While the therapeutic utility of CoQ10 supplements is recognized in the rare cases of primary CoQ10 deficiencies, a potential role for CoQ10 supplements in cardiovascular disease, particularly heart failure, has also been studied for over 40 years. This review summarizes our current knowledge in these areas derived from animal studies and human trials. Current evidence for a benefit of CoQ10 supplements in diseases other than primary CoQ10 deficiencies is insufficient.
Keywords: cardiovascular disease; subcellular distribution; therapy; ubiquinol; ubiquinone.