The online version of this article (doi:10.1186/cc10343) contains supplementary material, which is available to authorized users.
The authors declare that they have no competing interests.
MWD and MNC designed the study and were responsible for all aspects of this investigation. JS and DK were responsible for primary data collection and substantial portions of the data interpretation and analysis. PA was responsible for vascular endothelial biomarker and inflammatory cytokine assays. AN was responsible for the CoQ10 assays. CB provided oversight on the interpretation of the CoQ10 results. All authors were involved in the writing of the manuscript and approved the final version.
Mitochondrial dysfunction is associated with increased mortality in septic shock. Coenzyme Q10 (CoQ10) is a key cofactor in the mitochondrial respiratory chain, but whether CoQ10 is depleted in septic shock remains unknown. Moreover, statin therapy may decrease CoQ10 levels, but whether this occurs acutely remains unknown. We measured CoQ10 levels in septic shock patients enrolled in a randomized trial of simvastatin versus placebo.
We conducted a post hoc analysis of a prospective, randomized trial of simvastatin versus placebo in patients with septic shock (ClinicalTrials.gov ID: NCT00676897). Adult patients with suspected or confirmed infection and the need for vasopressor support were included in the initial trial. For the current analysis, blood specimens were analyzed for plasma CoQ10 and low-density lipoprotein (LDL) levels. The relationship between CoQ10 levels and inflammatory and vascular endothelial biomarkers was assessed using either the Pearson or Spearman correlation coefficient.
We analyzed 28 samples from 14 patients. CoQ10 levels were low, with a median of 0.49 (interquartile range 0.26 to 0.62) compared to levels in healthy control patients (CoQ10 = 0.95 μmol/L ± 0.29; P < 0.0001). Statin therapy had no effect on plasma CoQ10 levels over time (P = 0.13). There was a statistically significant relationship between plasma CoQ10 levels and levels of vascular cell adhesion molecule (VCAM) (r2 = 0.2; P = 0.008), TNF-α (r2 = 0.28; P = 0.004), IL-8 (r2 = 0.21; P = 0.015), IL-10 (r2 = 0.18; P = 0.025), E-selectin (r2 = 0.17; P = -0.03), IL-1ra (r2 = 0.21; P = 0.014), IL-6 (r2 = 0.17; P = 0.029) and IL-2 (r2 = 0.23; P = 0.009). After adjusting for LDL levels, there was a statistically significant inverse relationship between plasma CoQ10 levels and levels of VCAM (r2 = 0.24; P = 0.01) (Figure 3) and IL-10 (r2 = 0.24; P = 0.02).
CoQ10 levels are significantly lower in septic shock patients than in healthy controls. CoQ10 is negatively associated with vascular endothelial markers and inflammatory molecules, though this association diminishes after adjusting for LDL levels.
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- Coenzyme Q10 levels are low and may be associated with the inflammatory cascade in septic shock
Michael W Donnino
Michael N Cocchi
Justin D Salciccioli
Ali B Naini
- BioMed Central
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