Published: 24th July 2009
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Idebenone is an organic compound that is promoted as a vitamin-like natural compound with properties similar to that of CoQ10. It is an effective antioxidant and can be found in all aerobic organisms. It is also known to play an important role in the production of cellular energy.

Although it has been used for many years as a pharmaceutical ingredient, it has on recently been used as an ingredient in skin care products. A few skin care companies now market it as a new miracle ingredient rather than as an older compound that has found a new application.

Where did it come from?

In the 1970-80s, researchers studied Coenzyme Q10 for its therapeutic benefit, mainly related to heart disease, free radical damage and other neurological conditions. While doing this, researchers synthesized and tested numerous variations of the compound. Most proved ineffective or unsafe. Idebenone was an exception, it is now considered a "better Co Q10".

In some other studies it has been proven to be 30 to 100 times more effective, than vitamin E or vinpocetine in eliminating free radicals within brain cells.

Although in structure Idebenone is very closely related to Coenzyme Q10, there are some important differences that make it superior in neutralizing certain types of free radicals especially damage resulting from reduced blood flow.

The Journal of Transplantation published a study in 1995 that compared the tissue preserving effects of both Idebenone and CoQ10. The study measured a number of factors, including free radical membrane lipid damage, cell protein damage and production of cellular energy under conditions of hypoxia (oxygen deprivation). The results showed Idebenone to be dramatically more effective than Co Q10 at preserving liver tissue under conditions identical to that endured by whole livers that were stored prior to transplant to another person.

More recently CoQ10 has been shown in a few smaller studies to improve the appearance of wrinkles. As a result, some skin care companies decided that CoQ10 derivatives might provide a comparable benefit.

However, there is still a lot of work to be done to determine whether idebenone is better than CoQ10 as a wrinkle fighter. We do know that they both have multiple effects on the cells. However, despite their many similarities many important differences do exist. Therefore, until there are longer-term comparisons of idebenone and CoQ10 we won't know which one is superior.

This kind of uncertainty is quite common when it comes to new, 'in demand' wrinkle cream products. Fortunately this uncertainty has to do mostly with effectiveness rather than safety. Most experts do agree that idebenone is quite safe to use. It has remained in clinical use since the 1980s and retains an excellent safety record. It is sold as a nutritional supplement in the US without a prescription, the same as CoQ10.

Should you try it?

It may be a good idea to hold off with idebenone and wait for more studies as long as you are getting good results using proven anti-wrinkle agents. However, if they are not working for you or produce adverse effects, then you might give idebenone a try.

It is normally quite pricey, even though idebenone as a single ingredient is not very expensive. This is common for actively marketed "hot" treatments, their price will often include a sizeable hype premium.

You could always wait until the price drops or to make your own idebenone cream. This could ensure a sufficient concentration and freshness. Idebenone is easily inactivated by oxygen, which will make freshness very important.

Finally, if you do decide to try an idebenone product, you might consider performing a head-to-head comparison of it with CoQ10. You can simply apply one to each side of your face and compare the two. A test like this should probably be given at least six weeks for results.

Did you find this information on anti aging wrinkle cream ingredients helpful?

Visit Anti Aging Wrinkle Cream for further reading on the best products on the market.

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