Life Extension Magazine®

Senior man and woman discussing the benefits of using PQQ for cognitive function

In the News: Better Cognitive Function with PQQ

Breast cancer drug reduces progression and death; PQQ enhances cognitive function; several supplements improve sleep quality; multivitamins linked to reduced hip-fracture risk.

Scientifically reviewed by Dr. Gary Gonzalez, MD, in May 2022. Written by: Life Extension Editorial Staff.

Better Cognitive Function with PQQ

Brain model of person supplementing with PQQ for better cognitive function

Individuals who received supplements containing pyrroloquinoline quinone (PQQ) had better cognitive function compared to those given a placebo, according to the results of a trial published in the Journal of the American College of Nutrition.*

The trial included 58 participants, 40 to 80 years old, with aging-associated cognitive impairment, who received either 21.5 mg of PQQ per day for 12 weeks, or a placebo.

In the group that received PQQ, improvement was observed in composite memory, verbal memory, reaction time, complex attention, cognitive flexibility, executive function (judgement), and subjective forgetfulness, compared to the placebo group.

Editor’s Note: PQQ supports the growth of new mitochondria to promote cellular energy.

* J Am Coll Nutr. 2021 Aug 20;1-14.

Breast Cancer Drug Reduces Risk of Dying

Four woman wearing pink and pink ribbons for breast cancer awareness

The breast cancer drug Enhertu®, made by AstraZeneca PLC, has been found to significantly reduce the risk of dying or of tumor progression in women with advanced disease, according to a Wall Street Journal report.*

A phase 3 clinical trial called DESTINY-Breast03 compared Enhertu® to Kadcyla®, the current standard of care, in 500 women with metastatic breast cancer whose cancers didn’t respond to earlier treatment, and whose tumors produced high levels of the HER2 protein.

HER2 stands for human epidermal growth factor receptor 2. It can be put into remission with drugs like Herceptin®, but often returns and requires further treatment. Mortality rates are high for HER2 positive cancers compared to estrogen-receptor positive breast tumors that respond better to curative therapy.

This study found that compared to the drug Kadcyla®, Enhertu® reduced the risk of death or of tumor progression by 72%.

After one year, 75.8% of women treated with Enhertu® had no disease progression, compared to 34.1% of women treated with Kadcyla®.

According to the trial’s lead investigator, metastatic breast cancer patients typically experience disease progression in less than one year.

"We’ve never seen a magnitude of benefit like this in metastatic breast cancer before," said Dave Fredrickson, AstraZeneca’s head of oncology.

Enhertu® works by tracking down cancer cells and delivering a dose of chemotherapy at the site of the tumors, leaving healthy tissue unharmed.

Editor’s Note: Enhertu® is currently used as a third-line treatment, which means it’s only used after two previous treatments have failed. These results suggest that Enhertu® would be beneficial earlier on in the treatment process. AstraZeneca is hopeful that the drug could also be used to treat or cure early-stage disease.

* Available at: Accessed September 24, 2021.

Supplements Improve Sleep Quality

Man sleeping with the use of vitamin d capsules for better quality

A systematic review and meta-analysis published in the Postgraduate Medical Journal found benefits for supplemental vitamin D, melatonin, and amino acids in improving people’s quality of sleep.*

Researchers studied 15 randomized, controlled trials that examined the association between subjective sleep quality and supplementation with amino acids, the hormone melatonin, and vitamin D.

Pooled data for the two studies involving amino acid supplements, seven studies involving melatonin, and four studies involving vitamin D each showed significant differences between supplemented and control groups, with more favorable sleep scores occurring among those who received the supplements.

Editor’s Note: Sleep quality was assessed by using the Pittsburgh Sleep Quality Index.

* Postgrad Med J. 2021 Jan 13.

Multivitamin Lowers Risk of Hip Fracture

Doctor examining hip x-ray of patient using multivitamin to lower fracture risk

A meta-analysis reported in the Archives of Osteoporosis found a link between the use of multivitamin supplements and a lower risk of sustaining a fragility hip fracture, a complication of osteoporosis.*

A fragility fracture is one that results from low-level trauma.

In eight studies that reported multivitamin use among a total of 80,148 men and women with osteoporotic hip fracture, multivitamin use was associated with a 51% lower risk of fragility hip fracture compared to non-use.

Editor’s Note: "The protective effect of calcium and vitamin D supplementation on hip fracture risk has been a popular topic of study for decades," the authors observed. "In recent years, this focus has been extended to numerous other supplements such as carotenoids, fatty acids,minerals, and vitamins A, C, and E."

* Arch Osteoporos. 2021 Feb 11;16(1):29.