Acetyl-L-Carnitine Protects Blood-Brain Barrier from Alcohol Damage

December 2, 2010 | Byron J. Richards, Board Certified Clinical Nutritionist

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 Acetyl-L-Carnitine Protects Blood-Brain Barrier from Alcohol Damage
In excess alcohol is a fat-soluble toxin that readily damages the healthy structure of your blood-brain barrier. In this situation not only is your brain exposed to toxic levels of alcohol but the compromise that excess alcohol causes to your blood-brain barrier enables other toxins to enter your brain and induce damage. A new study shows that Acetyl-l-carnitine1 (ALC) can prevent alcohol-induced damaged to the blood-brain barrier.

Various tight junction proteins comprise the specialized blood vessel cells of the blood-brain barrier. The ability of these cells to maintain their tightness is what keeps undesirable compounds from entering the brain. Too much alcohol directly disturbs these proteins. ALC preserves their structural integrity thus preventing a chain reaction of brain damage due to a compromised blood brain barrier.

This new study on ALC, alcohol, and the brain lends support to an earlier study I reported on several months back regarding the ability of ALC to prevent general alcohol-induced damage. Together, these studies show that ALC is a potent protector of many aspects of brain function and structure.

Referenced Studies

  1. ^ Acetyl-L-Carnitine and the Blood-Brain Barrier  Psychopharmacology (Berl).   Muneer PM, Alikunju S, Szlachetka AM, Haorah J.

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