NAC (N-Acetyl-L-Cysteine) -- 180 caps
NAC (N-Acetyl-L-Cysteine) from Biotics Research Corp.
NAC supplies N-acetyl-L-cysteine, a derivative of L-Cysteine.
This product is more stable and better absorbed than L-Cysteine.
NAC is hepatoprotective. It is a potent antioxidant and a precursor to glutathione.
Recommended use: 1 capsule daily
The amino acid cysteine in its pre-acetylated form is known as N-Acetyl-L-Cysteine. It is essential for glutathione synthesis as it serves as the precursor to glutathione intracellular synthesis.1, 2 Glutathione is a critical component of the immune system, as it is an important intracellular water-soluble antioxidant. As part of this function, glutathione plays a vital role as the cofactor for the antioxidant enzymes glutathione peroxidase and glutathione transferase. Glutathione is also important to the liver, as the liver utilizes it for drug detoxification.
As a metabolite of cysteine, NAC plays an important role in detoxification. As a more stable form of L-Cysteine, NAC functions in protecting cells against oxidative stress.3 Additionally, NAC contributes to important bodily reactions, making it a part of a defensive mechanism toward potential carcinogens as well as against DNA damage.
The role of NAC in acetaminophen toxicity is widely documented, however, NAC contributes to other protective mechanisms, including drug conjugation and excretion, peroxides and free radical destruction, maintenance of the redox state of NADPH-NADP, acid-base balance, and the synthesis of sulfated compounds.4 NAC also plays a role in the development of the central nervous system.5 N-Acetyl-L-Cysteine, an acetylated form of cysteine, is readily absorbed to immediately provide an efficient precursor of cysteine for continued glutathione (GSH) synthesis.
• Anti-inflammatory activity and anti-angiogenetic activity
• Immunological effects
• Inhibition of cellular dysfunction
• Influence on cell cycle progression
• Inhibition of hypercellular growth
• Inhibition of invasion and abnormal cell proliferation
• Ability to block NF-kappaB activation6
• Protection against the adverse effects of chemopreventive and chemotherapeutical agents1
• Nucleophilicity, antioxidant activity
• Modulation of the metabolism
• Effects in the mitochondria
• Decrease in the biologically effective dose of carcinogens
• Modulation of DNA repair
• Inhibition of genotoxicity and cell transformation
• Modulation of gene expression and signal transduction pathways
• Regulation of cell survival and apoptosis
There have been numerous studies using NAC, with COPD, particularly in patients who smoke. Utilizing NAC in smokers with chronic bronchitis showed a significant reduction in the number of positive bacterial cultures in these patients.7
An additional six-month study demonstrating the effects of NAC on chronic bronchitis indicated a significant reduction in sick-leave days for the NAC group, compared to placebo. Another study utilizing NAC indicated potential benefits for chronic bronchitis, resulting in a significantly lower exacerbation rate in patients administered NAC, compared to placebo. 8
In the group administered NAC, 40% remained free from exacerbations, compared to 19% in the placebo group. The study also indicated that the sick-leave rate due to exacerbation in the NAC group was significantly infrequent. 9 NAC has also shown to be radioprotectant against oxidative damage. 10
Researchers have sited the beneficial use of NAC for the improvement of insulin sensitivity in women with polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS), noting a significant improvement in circulating insulin levels, as well as insulin sensitivity in these patients. 11
Since it easily passes through cellular membranes, NAC has been shown to be readily absorbed. It is also resistant to enzymatic breakdown and is important for cellular glutathione production.12
1. Issels RD, Nagele A, Eckert KG, Wilmanns W. Promotion of cystine uptake and its utilization for glutathione biosynthesis induced by cysteamine and N-acetylcysteine. Biochem Pharmacol . 1988 Mar 1;37(5):881-8.
2. Phelps DT, Deneke SM, Daley DL, Fanburg BL. Elevation of glutathione levels in bovine pulmonary artery endothelial cells by N-acetylcysteine. Am J Respir Cell Mol Biol . 1992 Sep; 7(3):293-9.
3. Biochemistry, Cantarow & Schepartz, 1954
4. De Flora S., Izzotti A, D’Agostini F, Balansky RM. Mechanisms of N-acetylcysteine in the prevention of DNA damage and cancer, with special reference to smoking-related end-points Carcinogenesis . 2001 Jul;22(7):999-1013.
5. Martha H. Stipanuk.
6. Pajonk F, Riess K, Sommer A, McBride WH. N-acetyl-L-cysteine inhibits 26S proteasome function: implications for effects on NF-kappaB activation. Free Radic Biol Med . 2002 Mar 15;32(6):536-43.
7. Riise GC, Larsson S, Larsson P, Jeansson S, Andersson BA. The intrabronchial microbial flora in chronic bronchitis patients: a target for N-acetylcysteine therapy? Eur Respir J .1994 Jan; 7(1):94-101.
8. Rassmussen, JB & Glennow, C. Reduction in days of illness after long-term treatment with N-acetylcysteine controlled-release tablets in patients with chronic bronchitis. Eur Respir J . 1988 Apr;1(4):351-5.
9. Bowman G, Backer U, Larsson S, Melander B, Wahlander L. Oral acetylcysteine reduces exacerbation rate in chronic bronchitis: report of a trial organized by the Swedish Society for Pulmonary Disease. Eur J Respir Dis . 1983 Aug; 64(6):405-415.
10. Neal R, Matthews RH, Lutz P, Ercal N. Antioxidant Role of N-Acetyl cysteine isomers following high dose irradiation. Free Radic Biol Med . 2003 Mar 15;34(6):689-95.
11. Fulghesu AM, Ciampelli M, Muzj G, Belosi C, Selvaggi L, Ayala GF, Lanzone A. N-acetyl-cysteine treatment improves insulin sensitivity in women with polycystic ovary syndrome. Fertil Steril . 2002 Jun;77(6):1128-35.
12. DeCaro L, Ghizzi A, Costa R, Longo A, Ventresca GP, Lodola E. Pharmacokinetics and bioavailability of oral acetylcysteine in healthy volunteers. Arzneimittelforschung . 1989 Mar;39(3):382-6.