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Systematic (IUPAC) name
CAS number 58186-27-9
ATC code N06BX13
PubChem 3686
Chemical data
Formula C 19H30O5  
Mol. mass 338.439 g/mol
Pharmacokinetic data
Bioavailability  ?
Metabolism  ?
Half life 18 hours
Excretion urine and feces
Therapeutic considerations
Pregnancy cat.  ?
Legal status
Routes  ?

Idebenone (pronounced eye-deb-eh-known) is an organic compound of the quinone family and promoted commercially as a synthetic analog of coenzyme Q10 (CoQ10).

Idebenone is claimed to have properties similar to CoQ10 in its antioxidant properties. Idebenone is a synthetic analogue of coenzyme Q10 used in Europe in the treatment of vascular and degenerative diseases of the central nervous system.

Research on idebenone as a potential therapy of Alzheimer's disease have been inconsistent, but there may be a trend for a slight benefit. Idebenone may benefit those with Friedreich's ataxia.

It inhibits lipoperoxide formation.[1]



Preliminary testing has been done in humans, to see if idebenone could be a safe and effective treatment for Friedreich's ataxia.[2][3] In a different experiment, a one-year test on eight patients, idebenone reduced the rate of deterioration of cardiac function in patients with Friedreich's ataxia, but without halting the progression of ataxia.[4]

There is insufficient clinical evidence to say whether idebenone is a treatment for Friedreich's Ataxia, and therefore no government agency has approved the marketing of idebenone for this purpose (but see information about Canadian "approval with conditions" below).

Idebenone has also been used in topical applications to treat wrinkles.[5]


On July 23, 2008, Health Canada issued a Notice of Compliance under the Notice of Compliance with Conditions (NOC/c) Policy to Santhera Pharmaceuticals (Switzerland) Ltd. for the drug product Catena. The product was authorized under the NOC/c Policy on the basis of the promising nature of the clinical evidence, and the need for a confirmatory study to verify its clinical benefit. Patients should be advised of the fact that the market authorization was issued with conditions.

See also


  1. ^ Suno M, Nagaoka A (May 1988). "[Effect of idebenone and various nootropic drugs on lipid peroxidation in rat brain homogenate in the presence of succinate]" (in Japanese). Nippon Yakurigaku Zasshi 91 (5): 295–9. PMID 3410376.  
  2. ^ Di Prospero NA, Baker A, Jeffries N, Fischbeck KH (October 2007). "Neurological effects of high-dose idebenone in patients with Friedreich's ataxia: a randomised, placebo-controlled trial". Lancet Neurol 6 (10): 878–86. doi:10.1016/S1474-4422(07)70220-X. PMID 17826341.  
  3. ^ Tonon C, Lodi R (September 2008). "Idebenone in Friedreich's ataxia". Expert Opin Pharmacother 9 (13): 2327–37. doi:10.1517/14656566.9.13.2327. PMID 18710357.  
  4. ^ Buyse G, Mertens L, Di Salvo G, et al. (May 2003). "Idebenone treatment in Friedreich's ataxia: neurological, cardiac, and biochemical monitoring". Neurology 60 (10): 1679–81. PMID 12771265.  
  5. ^ McDaniel D, Neudecker B, Dinardo J, Lewis J, Maibach H (September 2005). "Clinical efficacy assessment in photodamaged skin of 0.5% and 1.0% idebenone". J Cosmet Dermatol 4 (3): 167–73. doi:10.1111/j.1473-2165.2005.00305.x. PMID 17129261.  

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