TITLE

Acetyl-L-carnitine physical-chemical, metabolic, and therapeutic properties: relevance for its mode of action in Alzheimer's disease and geriatric depression

AUTHOR(S)
Pettegrew, J.W.; Levine, J.; McClure, R.J.
PUB. DATE
November 2000
SOURCE
Molecular Psychiatry;2000, Vol. 5 Issue 6, p616
SOURCE TYPE
Academic Journal
DOC. TYPE
Article
ABSTRACT
Acetyl-L-carnitine (ALCAR) contains carnitine and acetyl moieties, both of which have neurobiological properties. Carnitine is important in the β-oxidation of fatty acids and the acetyl moiety can be used to maintain acetyl-CoA levels. Other reported neurobiological effects of ALCAR include modulation of: (1) brain energy and phospholipid metabolism; (2) cellular macromolecules, including neurotrophic factors and neurohormones; (3) synaptic morphology; and (4) synaptic transmission of multiple neurotransmitters. Potential molecular mechanisms of ALCAR activity include: (1) acetylation of -NH[sub 2] and -OH functional groups in amino acids and N terminal amino acids in peptides and proteins resulting in modification of their structure, dynamics, function and turnover; and (2) acting as a molecular chaperone to larger molecules resulting in a change in the structure, molecular dynamics, and function of the larger molecule. ALCAR is reported in double-blind controlled studies to have beneficial effects in major depressive disorders and Alzheimer's disease (AD), both of which are highly prevalent in the geriatric population.
ACCESSION #
8988213

 

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