Higher rates of serious illness and death from coronavirus SARS-CoV-2 (COVID-19) infection among older people and those who have comorbidities suggest that age- and disease-related biological processes make such individuals more sensitive to environmental stress factors including infectious agents like coronavirus SARS-CoV-2. Specifically, impaired redox homeostasis and associated oxidative stress appear to be important biological processes that may account for increased individual susceptibility to diverse environmental insults. The aim of this Viewpoint is to justify (1) the crucial roles of glutathione in determining individual responsiveness to COVID-19 infection and disease pathogenesis and (2) the feasibility of using glutathione as a means for the treatment and prevention of COVID-19 illness. The hypothesis that glutathione deficiency is the most plausible explanation for serious manifestation and death in COVID-19 patients was proposed on the basis of an exhaustive literature analysis and observations. The hypothesis unravels the mysteries of epidemiological data on the risk factors determining serious manifestations of COVID-19 infection and the high risk of death and opens real opportunities for effective treatment and prevention of the disease….
Melatonin plays several major roles in maintaining a healthy immune system: sleep regulation, powerful and unique antioxidant, and its effectiveness at raising Glutathione. This page will also provide information on where this hormone is produced, how much naturally occurs in our bodies, how it is depleted, what foods have it, and considerations for supplementation.
Melatonin, known chemically as N-acetyl-5-methoxytryptamine, is a hormone secreted by the pineal gland located at the base of the brain that helps regulate sleep and wake cycles. This hormone is a derivative of the neurotransmitter serotonin and the amino acid tryptophan.
ROLE AS A SLEEP REGULATOR
Our bodies have their own internal clocks that help regulate the natural cycle of sleeping and waking hours (circadian rhythm) by controlling the production of melatonin. Usually, the levels of this hormone begin to rise in the mid- to late evening, remain high for most of the night, and then decline in the early morning hours. According to the Society for Light Treatment and Biological Rhythms, approximately 5-25 mcg of melatonin are secreted into the blood stream of healthy young and middle-aged men at night time.
Natural production is greatly affected by light. That is why during the shorter days of the fall and winter months, melatonin production may start earlier in the day. This change can lead to symptoms of seasonal affective disorder (SAD), or winter depression, when some people feel more tired and they need more sleep. Natural melatonin levels decline gradually after the age of thirty. Some elderly people produce very small amounts of it or none at all.
ROLE AS AN ANTIOXIDANT
Melatonin is a powerful antioxidant that can cross cell membranes, cross the blood-brain barrier, and it plays a role in stimulating other antioxidants – this makes it a truely unique antioxidant. It is considered more powerful than vitamins C, E and A, because it is soluble in both fat and water and can enter cells that vitamins cannot. Unlike other antioxidants, it does not undergo redox cycling, which is the ability of a molecule to undergo repeated reduction and oxidation and regain its antioxidant properties (in other words, it cannot be recycled). That is why it is referred to as a terminal antioxidant.
Melatonin has been shown to effectively raise Glutathione levels in many tissues, such as the brain, liver, blood serum and muscles.
Each antioxidant plays specific roles within our bodies. One of the roles melatonin plays is in the protection of nuclear and mitochondrial DNA. …