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The Role of Alpha-lipoic Acid Supplementation in the Prevention of Diabetes Complications: A Comprehensive Review of Clinical Trials

Author(s):

Sarah Jeffrey, Punitha Isaac Samraj* and Behin Sundara Raj   Pages 1 - 12 ( 12 )

Abstract:


Alpha-lipoic acid (ALA) is a substantial antioxidant in the prevention of diabetes and diabetes complications. It can regenerate other antioxidants like vitamin E, vitamin C, Coenzyme Q10 and glutathione and is often known as a universal antioxidant. Antioxidants play a role in diabetes treatment due to hyperglycemia-induced stimulation of the polyol pathway and formation of advanced glycation end products (AGE) and reactive oxygen species (ROS). Clinical trials examining alpha-lipoic acid supplementation on diabetic neuropathy, nephropathy, cardiomyopathy and erectile dysfunction display positive results, particularly in pain amelioration in neuropathy, asymmetric dimethylarginine reductions in nephropathy and improved oscillatory potential and contrast sensitivity in retinopathy. In diabetic cardiomyopathy (DCM), ALA offers protection through inhibition of NF-kB activation, reduction of fas-ligand and decrease in matrix metalloproteinase-2. This comprehensive review summarises and provides an understanding of the importance of alpha-lipoic acid supplementation to prevent diabetes complications.

Keywords:

Alpha-lipoic acid, Diabetes mellitus, Diabetic neuropathy, Cardiomyopathy, Diabetic nephropathy

Affiliation:

Endeavour College of Natural Health, Perth, Endeavour College of Natural Health, Perth, School of Pharmacy and Biomedical Sciences, Curtin University



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