L-carnosine: It seems like L-carnosine, a... - Cure Parkinson's

Cure Parkinson's

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It seems like L-carnosine, a natural molecule of the brain, may have some significant benefits for PWP:



Following is the relevant quotation from self hacked.com:

10) May Treat Parkinson’s Disease

Carnosine reduces the formation and promotes the breakdown, of abnormal proteins that are a cause of Parkinson’s [3].

It is thought that mitochondrial dysfunction as a result of oxidative damage plays an important role in Parkinson’s. Carnosine has been shown to suppress the type of oxidative damage linked to Parkinson’s [59].

MPTP is a neurotoxin that induces symptoms akin to Parkinson’s (short-term tremor, weight loss, rigidity, etc.). One study found that, in animals, Carnosine (100mg/kg for 14 days) decreased the severity of MPTP-induced symptoms. This corresponded with lower levels of lipid hydroperoxides and MAOB activity in their brains [60].

Studies have shown that patients with Parkinson’s often have damaged glyceraldehyde dehydrogenase, an important enzyme found in the frontal cortex of the brain. This damage leads to decreased ATP production and increased production of the highly toxic agent, methylglyoxal. Carnosine protects against damage to the glyceraldehyde dehydrogenase enzyme [61].

Carnosine promotes protein balance by decreasing methylglyoxal, which is often raised in those with Parkinson’s [3].

The brain’s substantia nigra, the section where dopamine is made, is prone to reaction with methylglyoxal, especially in the presence of high blood sugar. This harmful reaction, which makes ACTIQ, is prevented by Carnosine [3].

Carnosine inhibits malondialdehyde (MDA) toxicity in neuronal cells and limits the formation of protein carbonyls and protein cross-linking associated with Parkinson’s [24].

L-dopa is often used as a way to maintain dopamine levels in Parkinson’s sufferers. Unfortunately, some of the by-products of L-dopa are neurotoxic (e.g. those containing aldehyde groups). Carnosine neutralizes these toxic compounds and, therefore, is probably a fantastic supplement to combine with L-dopa therapy [62].

In fact, one study showed that a combination of L-dopa and Carnosine treatment (1.5 g/day) improved a number of neurological symptoms, such as rigidity of the hands and legs, and increased hand movement and leg agility. This corresponded to a decrease in protein carbonyls in the blood [63].

24 Replies

I find this article very interesting. Once again it's activity as a neuro-protector comes down to it's anti-oxidant properties. As PwP we have to protect our precious neurons from Reactive Oxygen Species, H2O2, quinones etc., that are produced by the decomposition of dopamine in the brain that attack our neurons. There are a great many molecules available in foods and supplements that have antioxidant properties.

The question I ask myself is the following: Is a healthy diet rich in fruit and vegs, sufficient to do the job, or do we need to take antioxidants as supplements in quantities that may seem excessive for healthy people. My feeling is that the latter is more likely to be necessary.

MehmetKutlu in reply to wriga

Your reasoning is correct. In the aforementioned study led by Research Center of Neurology at Russian Academy of Medical Sciences, carnosine tablets were given to active treatment group at a dose of 1500 mg/day, much higher than the daily need of a normal person. My neurologist was kind enough to obtain a full text reprint of that study. He was impressed by the reported degree of improvements with carnosine, but cautiously added that similar findings must be reproduced by different institutions before any firm recommendation could be made. ''We need more studies'' he says.

wriga in reply to MehmetKutlu

The only "more studies" you're likely to get are the studies you do on yourself. Patient, study thyself !

MehmetKutlu in reply to wriga

I wholeheartedly agree. The Big Pharma will have absolutely no interest in a natural substance that is impossible to patent and sell for massive amounts. As will most Universities.

But we have already seen this film before: ''Thiamin: The Total Ignorance''

LAJ12345 in reply to MehmetKutlu

Big pharma will take notice, take the natural compound, tweak it slightly by changing the molecule in some minor way that makes no difference to its effect then patent it as a “discovery of a novel compound”

I used to work for a chemistry lab where they did just this looking for cures for cancer, and aids. They would modify the natural compound that was thought to be active in many ways then send them all off for testing.

You are talking about this study.

Boldyrev, Alexander, et al. 2008. Carnisone increases efficiency of DOPA therapy of Parkinson's disease: a pilot study. Rejuvenation research, 11(4), pp.821-827.

Full text available here:



The addition of the neuropeptide carnosine (-alanyl-L-histidine) as a food additive to the basic protocol of Parkinson’s disease treatment results in significant improvement of neurological symptoms, along with increase in red blood cell Cu/Zn-SOD and decrease in blood plasma protein carbonyls and lipid hydroperoxides, with no noticeable change in platelets MAOB activity. The combination of carnosine with basic therapy may be a useful way to increase efficiency of PD treatment.

Carnosine is synthesized in our bodies from the amino acids beta alanine and histidine. It is found throughout the body but primarily in muscels, brain and heart. It is a buffer, antioxidant, anti-glycation, increases strength endurance, chelates heavy metals.

The challenge is that it is quite expensive and gets metabolized by the enzyme carnosinase in the gut. The solution to that is to feed beta alanine. Numerous human studies show beta alanine ingestion will increase carnosine. beta alanine is cheap and available. The down side of taking high levels is that it can cause a temporary hot tingling sensation.

ElliotGreen in reply to Jandeb


But this is in muscles. Does it apply to the brain as well?

ElliotGreen in reply to Jandeb

See this conversation here:



Carnosine is formed from the binding together of the amino acids alanine and histidine. This pair of amino acids presents a binding site for glucose and other sugars that is very similar to sites where sugars bind on complete proteins. In individuals with hyperglycemia, either from Metabolic Syndrome or fullblown diabetes, glycosylation of proteins accelerates. In people with diabetes, carnosine levels are lower than in people without diabetes19, perhaps because it gets used up in its role of binding to excess glucose in the blood. Strict vegetarians, who do not consume much carnosine in their diet, tend to have higher levels of glycosylated proteins in their bodies than do people who eat meat.

Unless one is a strict vegetarian, carnosine supplementation is likely unnecessary. Carnosine levels in the blood increase after a person has a meal of beef28. Whereas a 1000 mg of carnosine a day has been recommended as a supplement, there is about 1500 mg of carnosine in a pound of beef, and close to 2000 mg in similar amounts of pork or chicken29. Most fish, such as salmon, are low in carnosine, but high in a substance called anserine. Anserine is also found in the human body, and has actions in cells quite similar to those of carnosine30.

A pound of meat is a lot! We would eat only 1/3 of that in a meal, and meat only every 4 days, rarely beef!

ElliotGreen in reply to LAJ12345

"Carnosine is useful in helping prevent damage caused by too much sugar in the body. Sugars, such as glucose or fructose, can bind with proteins. This binding not only damages the protein, but the glycosylated protein can stimulate secondary inflammatory processes. Glycosylation of protein is one of the four major destructive pathways stimulated by oxidative stress in the body."

LAJ12345 in reply to ElliotGreen

Mmm, isn’t the solution eat less sugar and starch rather than more meat then?

The selfhacked link that is quoted is here:


LAJ12345 in reply to ElliotGreen

Wow sounds impressive.

A video - simple explanation and some details.


I just started taking carnosine, primarily for tremors a week ago, and will continue for 3 mos. I'll report back then. It should be interesting since I never eat beef.

How much did you start with? I started last week at 500mg daily.

1,000 mg

Buckholt in reply to KERRINGTON

Sorry if I missed your update but are you still taking Carnosine and what was your experience. Thanks

MehmetKutlu in reply to Buckholt

Hi. I saw an improvement in my rigidity and slowness, but it was not marked. Perceivable but modest at best. Below my expectation.

Zardoz in reply to MehmetKutlu

It sounds wonderful, but sadly it gets broken down in the digestive system and there's this conclusion in the link posted by Elliot Green above:


Carnosine is a compound made of two amino acids. It’s often added to anti-aging and antioxidant supplements, but clinical data on its benefits is limited.

There’s currently not enough evidence to recommend supplementation for any purpose. Clinical studies show that carnosine probably doesn’t improve athletic performance or schizophrenia symptoms.

Some scientists think that carnosine does have anti-aging potential, based on experiments in test tubes and lab animals. Human studies on this and other purported benefits of carnosine have yet to be carried out."

KERRINGTON in reply to Buckholt

Oops...I'm embarrassed to say I purchased it, then never took it, for a reason that escapes me...most likely I read something that I didn't like.

I started with 2x1.

1,000 twice a day ?

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