What is NAD+?
NAD+ is critical to physiological processes and also promotes over 50% of psychological processes, including cardiovascular protection, DNA damage repair, inflammation and stem cell regeneration. As a coenzyme for cellular oxidation, NMN helps to activate NAD+ depleting enzymes, such as acetylases, polyadenosine diphosphate ribose polymerases (PARPs), cADPR synthases, CD38 synthases, and mono-ADP-ribosyltransferases (ARTs).
Therefore, NMN is crucial for acetylase as the main precursor of NDA+, because low NMN in NDA+ directly affects the biological function of acetylase.
Therefore, low levels of NAD+ are attributed to physical disability and age-related diseases such as cardiovascular disease. One way to maintain healthy cellular levels of NAD+ is to give the body nicotinamide riboside (NR) and NMN supplements, or NAD+ precursors. This means that to generate more NAD+, we need more NRs and NMN.
NAD supplements called NMN
Over time, normal cellular functions deplete the supply of NAD+, and with age, the concentration of NAD+ in cells decreases. It is thought that healthy levels of NAD+ can be restored by supplementing NAD+ precursors. According to research, precursors such as NMN and nicotinamide riboside (NR) are thought to be complementary to NAD+ production, increasing the concentration of NAD+. David Sinclair, an NAD+ researcher from Harvard University, said: “Feeding or administering NAD+ directly to an organism is not a practical option. The NAD+ molecule cannot easily cross the cell membrane into the cell and therefore cannot have a positive effect on metabolism. Instead, NAD+ must be used. precursor molecules to increase the level of bioavailability of NAD+.” This means that NAD+ cannot be used as a direct supplement because it is not readily absorbed. NAD+ precursors are more easily absorbed than NAD+ and are more effective supplements.
How are NMN supplements absorbed and distributed throughout the body?
NMN appears to be taken up by cells via molecular transporters embedded on the cell surface. Since the NMN molecule is smaller than NAD+, it can be absorbed into cells more efficiently. Due to the barrier of the cell membrane, NAD+ is not easy to enter the body. The membrane has an anhydrous space that prevents the entry of ions, polar molecules and macromolecules without the use of transporters. It was once thought that NMN must be altered before it can enter cells, but new evidence suggests that it can enter cells directly through NMN-specific transporters on the cell membrane. In addition, NMN injections resulted in increased NAD+ in many areas of the body, including the pancreas, adipose tissue, heart, skeletal muscle, kidneys, testes, eyes, and blood vessels. Oral administration of NMN in mice increased intrahepatic NAD+ within 15 minutes.
Possible benefits of NMN
In the pharmaceutical field, NMN has theoretically succeeded in slowing the aging process because of its role in the coenzyme catalysis of mammalian NAD+. Harvard scientist and geneticist David Sinclair has come up with a diagram describing the mechanisms by which NAD+ levels in the body increase and the corresponding health benefits. This figure is what he calls NMN hyperplasia.
NMN has shown some effectiveness in mouse model studies of disease and aging. In these same studies, it’s likely to show benefits ranging from diabetes to Alzheimer’s to ischemia, which is common in most older adults. More research is needed to show that it is equally effective and safe in humans, although studies in these mice have shown some positive results so far.
In a recent study, the effect of NMN supplementation on improving aerobic capacity in amateur runners was investigated. Preliminary research published in JISSN shows that NMN does improve aerobic capacity in humans during exercise. But this improvement may be due to increased oxygen utilization by skeletal muscle.
Treatment of Alzheimer’s disease
Alzheimer’s disease is a loss of brain function caused by damage to brain tissue, often associated with old age. Given that high blood pressure, Alzheimer’s disease, and stroke impair blood flow to the brain, due to the decline in brain function, proper administration of NMN can cross the blood-brain barrier and improve blood flow to the brain. These conclusions have only been studied in mice so far, so more human trials are needed before other conclusions can be drawn.
In these studies, both NMN and nicotinamide riboside (NR) reduced neuroinflammation and improved memory, learning, and motor control. NMN also reduced beta-amyloid plaque levels in the brains of diseased mice.
Medical reports show that people who take NMN, both men and women, show increased libido; some biotech companies have found that NMN derivatives can restore fertility in aging animals.
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Dr. Sinclair and his team worked hypothetically on female subjects during their experiments by adding NMN to the water of old postmenopausal female mice. They noticed that female subjects were able to reproduce for longer; when the egg cells were studied, they found that the content of DNA and chromosomes had normalized to the same levels as young egg cells, and the female subjects were able to reproduce again.
Therefore, their findings suggest that NMN may be effective in slowing or even reversing menopause. The potential possibility is that it will act as a non-invasive fertility treatment.