An age-related effect is the reduction in the energy-producing components of the cell, resulting in reduced cellular metabolic activity, and the accumulation of cellular debris. L-carnitine helps maintain cellular energy metabolism by assisting in the transport of fatty acids from the cytosol into the mitochondria within the cell, where fats are oxidized to produce the cellular energy (adenosine triphosphate or ATP).
Acetyl-L-carnitine is the acetylated ester of the amino acid L-carnitine. Acetyl-L-carnitine is an endogenous mitochondrial membrane compound that helps maintain mitochondrial bioenergetics and lowers the increased oxidative stress associated with aging. Acetyl-L-carnitine and L-carnitine are absorbed into the bloodstream efficiently. Both are effective at carrying long-chain fatty acids across the membrane into the mitochondria where they are burned for energy production and utilized efficiently by the cells. Acetyl-L-carnitine also crosses the blood-brain barrier and guards against oxidative damage. Amyloid-beta peptide is a principal component of plaques and is thought to be a contributor to the aging process. Acetyl-L-carnitine exerts protective effects against such neurotoxicity and oxidative stress.
Acetyl-L-carnitine (ALC) easily crosses the blood-brain barrier and may have potential in exerting unique neuroprotective, neuromodulatory and neurotrophic properties. ALC may support youthful memory function, improve mitochondrial structure and function, inhibit age-related oxidative damage, and restore the activity of key enzymes.