Effects of Coenzyme Q10 Supplementation on Inflammatory Cytokines (TNF-α, IL-6) and Oxidative Stress in Rheumatoid Arthritis Patients: A Randomized Controlled Trial

Arch Med Res. 2015 Oct;46(7):527-33. doi: 10.1016/j.arcmed.2015.08.006. Epub 2015 Sep 3.


Backgrounds and aims: Overproduction of proinflammatory cytokines is a main trait of rheumatoid arthritis. Coenzyme Q10 (CoQ10), an endogenous antioxidant, has shown anti-inflammatory effects in some diseases. In this study we aimed to assess the effects of CoQ10 supplementation on cytokines generation and oxidative stress in rheumatoid arthritis.

Methods: In this double-blind, randomized controlled clinical trial, 44 patients with rheumatoid arthritis were recruited. Twenty two patients received 100 mg/day capsules of CoQ10 and 22 patients took placebo for 2 months. At the beginning and the end of the intervention, 7 mL of fasting blood was taken from patients to measure malondialdehyde (MDA), total antioxidant capacity (TAC), interleukin (IL)-6 and tumor necrosis factor alpha (TNF-α).

Results: At the end of the study, serum MDA significantly decreased in supplemented group (mean difference = -1.47 nmol/mL; 95% confidence interval (CI), -2.52 to -0.43; p = 0.008). CoQ10 also suppressed overexpression of TNF-α (difference in median was +1.1 in placebo vs. +0.03 in CoQ10 group; p = 0.033). There was no significant difference in TAC and IL-6 levels between groups.

Conclusions: This study showed beneficial effects of CoQ10 supplementation on inflammatory cytokines and oxidative stress in rheumatoid arthritis patients.

Keywords: Coenzyme Q(10) (CoQ(10)); Inflammatory cytokines; Oxidative stress; Rheumatoid arthritis; Ubiquinol.

Publication types

  • Randomized Controlled Trial
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Antioxidants / therapeutic use*
  • Arthritis, Rheumatoid / blood
  • Arthritis, Rheumatoid / drug therapy*
  • Dietary Supplements
  • Double-Blind Method
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Interleukin-6 / blood*
  • Male
  • Malondialdehyde / blood
  • Middle Aged
  • Oxidative Stress / drug effects*
  • Tumor Necrosis Factor-alpha / blood*
  • Ubiquinone / administration & dosage
  • Ubiquinone / analogs & derivatives*
  • Young Adult


  • Antioxidants
  • IL6 protein, human
  • Interleukin-6
  • Tumor Necrosis Factor-alpha
  • Ubiquinone
  • Malondialdehyde
  • coenzyme Q10
  • Ubiquinone Q2