Hacking Mitochondria with Methylene Blue

My Experiement Bio-hacking Mitochondria

So apart from helping others I also want to get more optimal. I am not one that goes for supplements and external forces to do this but there is one product that has been around for almost 200 years that no one is using for what I am using it for and that is Methylene Blue.

I usually look for ways to improve my environment before I start using chemicals for health effects. But I am telling your this is an antioxidant that you do not want to miss out on.

I am taking two doses daily once in the morning a few drops and once in the afternoon. When I take it I automatically feel full of energy. I am also really full and do not want to eat. I seem to be able to concentrate better and I have a feeling like I can do almost anything. Its different than coffee and there are no jitters. I have also lost weight. I am experimenting with it as a wrinkle reducer as I have put some in a face cream. so far I love the way I feel on it and I know it helping me be more optimal. 

Over the past 200 years it has been used for the following:

 Methylene Blue boosts mitochondrial energy, is anti-aging, and improves mood and memory

Methylene Blue (methylthioninium chloride) is a synthetic compound used as a nootropic to increase memory, mood and longevity.

Soon after Methylene Blue was synthesized as a textile dye in the late 1800’s, it became the first synthetic drug to be used in humans. It was used for the treatment of malaria.

methylene blue nootropicIn the early 20th century, psychiatrists were using Methylene Blue in the experimental treatment of schizophrenia.[i]

Methylene Blue is currently being studied as potential therapy for mild cognitive impairment, Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’sdisease, and other neurodegenerative disorders. All sharing a common problem with mitochondrial function.

Your brain’s neurons rely almost entirely on mitochondria-derived energy. Failure of mitochondrial function can affect the rest of your body. But it’s particularly detrimental to your brain.

This is where Methylene Blue steps in as possibly one of the most important anti-aging and neurological disease preventing nootropics we have available today.

As a nootropic, Methylene Blue quickly crosses the blood-brain barrier. It improves mitochondrial efficiency and respiration, acts as an antioxidant, and increases brain cell lifespan. Resulting in improved memory and mood.

Here we’ll dive into over 140 years of research on how Methylene Blue helps your brain.

Methylene Blue helps:

  • Neurotransmitters: Methylene Blue inhibits monoamine oxidaseand acetylcholinesterase activity which increases levels of catecholamines and acetylcholine. And boosts serotonin and norepinephrine affecting anxiety, depression and memory.
  • Mitochondrial Energy: Methylene Blue assists brain cell respiration by increasing oxygen. And donating electrons to the electron transport chain within mitochondria. This same process is used to feed mitochondrial ATP when you eat. So MB provides this fuel without you having to eat. Increasing cellular energy positively effects mood and memory.
  • Neuroprotectant: Methylene Blue is a potent antioxidant. Reactive oxygen species are produced inside mitochondria. The first free radical that is formed inside a cell is superoxide. MB will bind to superoxide and reduce it to water. It stops the oxidativecascade at its very beginning. Before it gets a chance to do damage.

Methylene Blue (methylthioninium chloride) was first synthesized in 1876 by German chemist Heinrich Caro at BASF as an aniline-based dye for cotton staining.

In 1891, German physician and Noble Prize recipient Paul Ehrlich pioneered the use of Methylene Blue in the treatment of malaria.[ii]

Ehrlich discovered that when MB was injected into animals in the lab, it would quickly concentrate in the brain. And had an uncanny ability to selectively target diseased tissues in the body.

It was Ehrlich who coined the term “Magic Bullet” for this unique action displayed by Methylene Blue. A term still in use today.

Methylene Blue has since been used to treat dementia, cancer chemotherapy, malaria, methemoglobinemia, urinary tract infections, cyanide and carbon monoxide poisoning.[iii]

As a nootropic, Methylene Blue is used to enhance mitochondrialfunction, increase cerebral blood flow, and acts as an antidepressant.

How does Methylene Blue work in the brain?

Methylene Blue boosts brain health and function in several ways. But two in particular stand out.

  1. Methylene Blue improves memory. Unlike other nootropics which often work by increasing neurotransmitter synthesis and neural signaling, MB improves memory by increasing brain cell respiration. Or how the brain cell utilizes oxygen.

Studies show dramatic increases of cellular oxygen consumption and glucose uptake when using Methylene Blue. MB increases CMRO2(cerebral metabolic rate) through increased activity in the mitochondrial electron transport chain.

Methylene Blue functions as an alternative electron carrier in the electron transport chain in mitochondria. It accepts electrons from NADH and transfers them to cytochrome c.[iv]

Cytochrome complex (cytochrome c) is a component of the electron transport chain in mitochondria. Playing a role in apoptosis and as an antioxidant.

Methylene Blue also stimulates glucose metabolism. Taken together, increases in CMRO2 and glucose uptake means that MB elevates oxygen consumption which helps glucose increase ATP production.

Increases in ATP production provides more cellular energy for better overall brain function including cognition, mood and memory.

  1. Methylene Blue is an antioxidant. MB has a unique mechanism of action that is fundamentally different from traditional antioxidants. During cellular respiration, the first free radicalformed inside a cell is superoxide (O2).

Methylene Blue binds to superoxide and reduces it to water. It stops the oxidative cascade at its very beginning. Before it gets a chance to do damage.[v]

So think of Methylene Blue as having a unique dual property. First, it increases cellular energy production which normally leads to oxidative stress. And second, it eliminates this oxidative stress. Making it a metabolic enhancer and an antioxidant.

Researchers tested Methylene Blue in animal models of neurological disease. First, researchers used rotenone (a potent pesticide) which causes severe dopamine depletion in the part of the brain associated with Parkinson’s.

Methylene Blue rescued brain cell mitochondria from the damaging effects of this toxin. By donating electrons in the electron transport chain broken by rotenone. Essentially bypassing the broken transport chain with donated electrons as an alternative electron carrier.

Methylene Blue also countered cerebral ischemia reperfusion damage. The tissue damage caused when blood supply returns to tissue after a lack of oxygen. As can occur with Traumatic Brain Injury. MB accomplished this by rerouting mitochondrial electron transfer.

This means that Methylene Blue dramatically countered the behavioral, neurochemical, and neuropathological impairment found in Parkinson’s disease.[vi]

Low dose Methylene Blue supplementation provides memory enhancing effects in animals and humans. It works as an antidepressant, is anti-aging, helps dementia, Huntington’s and Alzheimer’s.

Methylene Blue increases low blood pressure, improves cognition in healthy people, boosts mitochondrial function, is anti-microbial, can eliminate fear and even slow skin aging.

Methylene Blue boosts acetylcholine

Research shows that Methylene Blue is an acetylcholinesterase inhibitor with a preference for muscarinic acetylcholine receptors. Meaning MB prevents the breakdown of acetylcholine and making more available in your brain.[vii]

Methylene Blue is an antidepressant

Methylene Blue is a monoamine oxidase inhibitor (MAOI). It inhibits MAO-A more than MAO-B, but inhibits both at large doses.[viii]

One study in 1987 showed that 15 mg per day of Methylene Blue was a potent antidepressant in those with severe depression.[ix]

Another study with 31 bipolar disorder patients compared 300 mg per day of Methylene Blue with 15 mg per day. The patients were also on lithium treatment. The study showed that the 300 mg dose of Methylene Blue was a “useful addition to lithium in the long-term treatment of manic-depressive psychosis”. And patients were significantly less depressed.[x]

Methylene Blue resists Alzheimer’s Disease

Alzheimer’s disease and other forms of dementia are associated with a buildup of the protein Tau. Clinical trials show that Methylene Blue inhibits Tau formation. And is under consideration as a treatment for Alzheimer’s.[xi]

Methylene Blue has an inhibitory action on the cGMP pathway, and affects other molecular events closely related to the progression of Alzheimer’s.

Methylene Blue boosts neuron resistance to the formation of amyloid plaques and neurofibrillary tangles. And helps repair impairments in mitochondrial function and cellular metabolism.

Research also shows that cholinergic, serotonergic and glutamatergicsystems all play important roles in the development of Alzheimer’s and other cognitive disorders. Methylene Blue provides beneficial effects in mediating these pathways.[xii]

This is particularly significant because most existing treatments for Alzheimer’s can only prevent the disease before it is diagnosed. But Methylene Blue shows promise in delaying the effects of Alzheimer’s and dementia after it is diagnosed.

Methylene Blue is anti-aging

methylene blue usp gradeResearch shows that Methylene Blue is an effective anti-aging nootropic. MB increases mitochondrial complex IV by 30%, enhances cellular oxygen consumption by 37-70%, increases heme synthesis, and reverses premature senescence caused by H2O2 or cadmium.

Methylene Blue is considered a redox agent. Meaning it cycles between oxidized and reduced forms. This cycling by MB helps block oxidant production in brain cell mitochondria.[xiii]

Mitochondrial complex IV is the last enzyme in the respiratory electron transport chain of mitochondria. The last step in synthesizing ATP. Your cellular and mitochondrial source of energy.

Iron (heme) is an essential element and participates in oxygen transport, DNA synthesis and electron transport. Heme synthesisbegins in mitochondria. Every cell requires heme to function properly.[xiv]

Senescence or biological aging is the gradual deterioration of cellular function. And is caused by telomere shortening that triggers DNA damage in response to reactive oxygen species, hydrogen peroxide (H2O2), cadmium and other toxins. Methylene Blue helps prevent premature senescence or premature cell death.

Methylene Blue improves memory

Animal studies have shown that a single low dose of Methylene Blue enhances long-term contextual memory. This type of memory is the conscious recall of the source and circumstances of a specific memory.

Other studies show that Methylene Blue in low doses taken after the event helps memory retention of the event. A study done with rats revealed why this works.

In this study, rats received 1 mg/kg of MB post-training for 3 days. The researchers then measured cytochrome c oxidation in participants brains. The idea was to determine if an increase in metabolic energy was behind the memory enhancing qualities of MB.

The study found that in the Methylene Blue treated group, brain cytochrome oxidase activity was 70% higher than in the placebo-treated group.

The findings suggest that repeated post-training supplementation of Methylene Blue improves memory consolidation. And this memory boost is due to the increased metabolic capacity in brain regions that require more energy during discrimination learning.[xv]

How does Methylene Blue feel?

methylene blue side effectsMethylene Blue as a nootropic will likely feel different than any other supplement you’ve ever tried.

When reading or studying, once you’re done, you should feel like you fully understand the subject material. And you’ll be able to use what you learned in the future.

Methylene Blue seems to facilitate a full understanding of something on the first try.

Many neurohackers report the biggest nootropic effect they experience with Methylene Blue is “after the fact learning”. You take in the information. And it’s like your brain sorts through the material. Then stores it in a form you can easily access later.

Methylene Blue has this uncanny ability to rewire your brain to forget about any negative associations you have of a situation. And only retains the positive aspects of that memory.

Some report that Methylene Blue makes you “feel young again”. It eliminates social anxiety. You’ll feel focused and more confident.

Workouts seem easier because you have more energy. Your mitochondria are energized. And you may find that recovery from workouts is easier.

Methylene Blue helps eliminate stress. So you have more energy in any situation with a relaxed state of mind.

And one recurring theme from many is improved sleep while using Methylene Blue.

pharmaceutical grade methylene blue

The Research

Research into Methylene Blue for its therapeutic value goes back to the late 1800’s. But it’s only in the last couple of decades that scientists have been able to decode exactly how Methylene Blue works in the brain. All the way down to the molecular level in mitochondria.

A study in 2017 found that Alzheimer’s Disease could be caused by more than the accumulation of amyloid beta in the brain. The scientists looked into the two main components that produce energy in cells.

  1. Glycolysis is the mechanism used to convert glucose into fuel for consumption by mitochondria.
  2. Burning this fuel in mitochondria uses oxygen in a process called mitochondrial respiration.

The researchers found that as the brain ages, mitochondrial metabolism deteriorates. Resulting in a reduction in the molecules needed for energy production. And possibly the main culprit behind many neurological diseases including Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s.[xvi]


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