Is Apoaequorin Truly The Brain Vitamin We Hope It Is?
Description: Apoaequorin is a well known compound found in bioluminescent jellyfish. Studies have shown that it can help improve mental cognition, especially in the elderly.
When scientists discovered apoaequorin, they won a Noble Peace Prize in 2008. To date, it is a controversial “brain vitamin” that numerous people have tried through a product called Prevagen by Quincy Bioscience. This “wonder supplement” helped the company become one of the fastest growing companies in the United States.
What Is Apoaequorin?
Apoaequorin is a protein found in glowing jellyfish when it is bound to calcium ions. When the protein binds itself with the calcium ion, it produces the glow of the Aequorea victoria, a jellyfish with one of the simplest nervous system in the ecosystem. Quincy Bioscience claims though that their product, Prevagen, won’t make their customers glow like the bioluminescent jellyfish but instead, improve brain function.
Through experiment and research, scientists found that apoaequorin helped improve the cognitive function of the brain. This is especially effective, as they claimed, if taken by older people suffering from mild cognitive impairment. Younger people though are not prohibited from ingesting the compound as there have been reports of cognitive improvement among the younger group.
Apoaequorin is taken from a jellyfish, but researches claimed that the compound is “very similar in its amino acid sequence to a human endogenous calcium-binding protein.” What it simply states is that it is supposedly safe to be taken by human as the compound is already a familiar nutrient that the body takes from other sources.
What Are The Benefits Of Apoaequorin?
When ingesting it, there are known benefits that the human body can enjoy. One of which is the improved calcium homeostasis. Endogenous calcium is a very important component of the brain responsible for maintaining low levels of cytosolic calcium. When the level of cytosolic calcium increases, it would cause a diminished performance of the neuron cells.
The decrease of endogenous calcium is a normal process associated with aging. Apoaequorin’s amino acid sequence, similar to endogenous calcium, helps by maintaining low levels of cytosolic calcium. It can help regulate intracellular calcium levels and protect neurons from degradation and its eventual death.
Studies have also shown that patients that took apoaequorin had an improved recall. The study claims that those suffering from mild to moderate mental impairment benefited most from the compound. The test results from those suffering from moderate to severe impairments failed to show a statistically significant improvement.
Through their research and studies, Quincy Bioscience claims that people who take their product Prevagen, the only known supplement with the jellyfish protein, can expect an improvement from absent mindedness, memory, and mild memory problems. They also claim that there are still unknown benefits from taking it.
Is It Safe To Take?
Prevagen is the only supplement to incorporate apoaequorin as its main active ingredient. It is one of the most talked about memory boosting supplement in the market. It is also a very controversial one. It promises improvement in memory and attention, something that a lot of people crave for, whether it’s for their daily schedule, or for old people trying to enjoy their golden years.
Quincy Bioscience claims that there are no known interactions between Prevagen and other prescription medications. They caution, though, that before trying their supplement with prescription medications, it is imperative to consult their physicians first. Unknown results might occur that could be detrimental to the person taking it.
The company also claims that the supplement is safe and well tolerated by the body since it is safe enough to be ingested and classified as a food ingredient. There have been reports though of major side effects for those who took the supplement.
It is also stated that apoaequorin is non-allergenic. Those with known allergic reactions with fishshould not worry since the component is found on a jellyfish. A jellyfish is not a fish, but a Cnidaria, a completely different phylum from fishes.
Is It Vegetarian, Does It Contain Jellyfish?
For anyone worrying about harming jellyfish or if it is suitable for vegetarians the answer is a happy one! The protein is grown under scientific conditions without the need for actual jellyfish and the product Prevagen is a vegetarian product, produced in a non gelatin capsule with a gluten free rice flour used as a filler.
Any Recent Controversies?
In recent years, Quincy Bioscience has been under fire from the United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA). When this news was revealed to the public, people taking the supplement were advised to consult their physicians about the supplement with regard to their current health and mental disposition.
Though Quincy Bioscience claims that there are no known side effects from using Prevagen, there have been reports of people suffering “seizures, strokes, and worsening symptoms of multiple sclerosis”, all of which are severe conditions that could be fatal if not treated early and properly. Other side effects include chest pains, tremors, fainting, and other serious symptoms.
The controversy arose when the FDA claimed that Quincy Bioscience failed to disclose the reported side effects of taking Prevagen. The FDA claims that reports and complaints have been made with the company by concerned users but “only investigated or reported two events.” Between May 2008 and December 2011, there have been more than 1000 incidents of these side effects.
Prevagen contains apoaequorin, a known compound from a bioluminescent jellyfish. However, the compound found in the supplement is only a synthetic form of apoaequorin. The FDA claims that since this content is only synthetic, it should be classified as a drug and not a supplement, thus should be under the strict approval requirement of the FDA.
Should You Take Apoaequorin?
Companies are known to exaggerate the efficacy of their products. This is a way to boost their sales and get a strong following in the market. However, this practice must be used with caution as certain complications may arise when their promises are not met. Even worse, when their products produce adverse effects that their customers definitely did not expect, they would be under intense heat.Buy an Apoaequorin alternative here
This is the case with Quincy Bioscience. There have been mixed reviews regarding the efficacy of Prevagen. Some reviews claim that it worked wonders for them. While the others claim that it failed to deliver its promise. The 30-90 day waiting time is just too long for some to claim as effective, and the price of the supplement is just too much.
Up to now, Quincy Bioscience still maintains its position that their product is safe and has no known side effects. However, there have been reports of major side effects that prompted the FDA to warn Quincy Bioscience to state these reports to the public.
The compound suffers a blow in its reputation because of this controversy. Further research and tests are still necessary to determine whether this protein is actually safe and can deliver absolute mental improvement without the risk of any side effects.
The final choice is yours to make. Try it and see if it works for you by following the product link below or find a different brain supplement from the vast amount available out there. If you need help finding an alternative follow this link and read through some of our other reviews to find a suitable one for you. Our top pick is a 100% natural supplement by Native Remedies called Focus Formula.
In my opinion Prevagen appears to be a total and deliberate scam: I am not claiming this, I am just saying that this is how it currently appears to me (I am open to new information). When we ingest proteins, they are broken down into their constituent amino acids, so ingesting Prevagen would not seem to be different than ingesting any other protein, i.e. it would not have any specific beneficial effects for calcium homeostasis or neuronal functioning. I do not understand how the scientists at Quincy Biosciences could NOT know this, but I look forward to their response.
Don, I agree with you that it seems like a scam. However, I haven’t done due diligence in investigating it yet. However, I just wanted to pop in to say that your idea of amino acids is not complete. For example, taking D Aspartic Acid has been shown to increase testosterone levels in humans, yet it is only an amino acid. Glutamine is only an amino acid, yet many heavy exercisers use it for their workouts. Although I am very skeptical as well I just wanted to point out that consuming a specific amino acid does not just register as protein to the body, but can have specific effects.
It should be made explicitly clear that the Nobel Prize was NOT awarded for apoaequorin and its use a supplement for cognitive or memory enhancer. The Nobel Prize was actually awarded for green fluorescent protein (GFP) because GFP became a widely-used tool in research. (See http://www.nobelprize.org/nobel_prizes/chemistry/laureates/2008/press.html). Also, “all natural” molecules are not necessarily “better” than synthetic ones. For example, there is no difference between “natural” table salt (sodium chloride) and sodium chloride made synthetically in a chemistry beaker. It’s the same compound! Also, ricin and Bacillus anthracis are two examples of things that are 100% all natural but extremely deadly. Anything touted as “all natural” is simply another marketing ploy and used to justify higher cost. Scientists do not use these terms.
By the way, Don is correct about apoaequorin being digested. According to a review (PMID: 23030514), oral apoaequorin has not yet been shown to survive digestion, cross the blood-brain barrier, or enter the human central nervous system. In fact, apoaequorin is immediately digested within seconds using in vitro simulations of digestion (PMID: 23470325). Also, even if it reached brain cells, it seems likely that it would be degraded by the endosome/lysosome system (PMID: 23030514). A likely scam indeed.
I tried prevagen for 90 days. 60 days with the small dose and 30 days with the ‘extra strength’ dose.
After 70 days it seemed that where I had a ‘senior moment’ , after a second or two I could regain the thought that was lost. For the first 69 days, I could not regain the lost thought. I also noticed two possible side effects……minor tremor about once a week that was not there before and uncomfortable feeling in the chest. Maybe its all psychological, and maybe not. But I gave it a try for a bunch of $$. Have stopped using it as the cost effectiveness doesn’t seem to be there.
Good luck with the email since you require it and I don’t have one.