pills, COVID-19 graphic

Combined metabolic activators accelerate symptom-free recovery in COVID-19, according to a recent study.

In severe cases, COVID-19 can lead to respiratory problems, metabolic dysfunction, elevated inflammation, and organ failure. Metabolic abnormalities and hyper inflammation are associated with deficiencies in nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide (NAD+) and glutathione (GSH) metabolism. The cellular depletion of NAD+ and GSH are linked to increased mortality rates of COVID-19.

Mitochondrial dysfunction and metabolic abnormalities in patients with COVID-19 are currently being treated using Remdesivir and Favipiravir. However, new approaches could work in combination with existing therapies.

Combined metabolic activators

Combined metabolic activators (CMAs) are a potential treatment for non-alcoholic fatty liver disease, as well as lung diseases and viral infectious diseases. CMAs include L-serine, N-acetyl-L-cysteine (NAC), nicotinamide riboside (NR), and L-carnitine tartrate. All four of these activators are known to improve mitochondrial function.

Since CMAs are associated with improvements in metabolic conditions, it was thought that they may help with COVID-19 recovery and increase the levels of NAD+ and GSH.

Combined metabolic activators are associated with a more rapid recovery of COVID-19

Researchers have investigated the potential use of metabolic activators in the treatment of mild-to-moderate COVID-19. A randomized, double-blind, phase three clinical trial was carried out to assess the efficacy, tolerability, and safety of combined metabolic activators for COVID-19. The CMAs given were glutathione and NAD+ precursors.

The study included 304 adult ambulatory COVID-19 patients. The most common COVID-19 symptoms in the patient group were muscle or joint pain (61%), tiredness (50%), cough (43%), headache (38%), fever (28%), and a sore throat (24%).

In addition to standard care, the participants were randomly assigned to receive the placebo or metabolic activators, twice per day.

The results of the study showed that CMAs:

  • Significantly reduced time to complete recovery by 3.5 days (9.2 days in the placebo group and 5.7 days in the CMA group)
  • Led to improved clinical health in all patients
  • Decreased inflammation levels, as revealed by inflammatory markers
  • Improved liver health

For these reasons, the administration of combined metabolic activators is an effective and safe treatment for COVID-19 patients. This improves clinical outcomes in mild-to-moderate COVID-19 by improving the immune response, as well as by regulating antioxidant, amino acid, and lipid metabolism.

Senior researcher Dr Adil Mardinoglu stated, “Our phase three data shows that metabolic activators significantly improve the recovery, liver health, and markers of inflammation of patients with COVID-19. Dysfunctional mitochondria have been implicated in worsened progression for COVID-19, and we are pleased to find that the combination of these metabolic activators helps to remedy the stress put on the body of an infected patient.”


Altay O, et al. (2021). Combined metabolic activators accelerates recovery in mild-to-moderate COVID-19. Adv. Sci. Retrieved from: https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1002/advs.202101222

COVID-19 patients recover faster with metabolic activator treatment, study shows (2021). EurekAlert! Retrieved from: https://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2021-06/krio-cpr062821.php

Image by Miguel Á. Padriñán from Pixabay 

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