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Acyclovir - Also Reduces Lipid Peroxidation and Necrosis of Hippocampal Neurons....

Um, what!? Yep, Acyclovir, "inhibits the lipid peroxidation after in vitro and in vivo exposure to quinolinic acid" and , "Reduces necrosis of hippocampal neurons". [1, 2]

Dang, isn't lipid peroxidation behind what happens down stream from TNFA up regulation ? Yep

Doesn't it destroy cell membranes? Yep

Isn't the hippocampus implicated in CFS ? Yes. Doesn't it shrink when we are caught in continual flight or fight due to platelet activation and low oxygen delivery to the brain and tissues? Yes.

Importantly, if acyclovir has helped you - it may not be only from its anti viral effects, but also the intervention against excess quinolinic acid.........worthy of exploration. Quinolinic acid is a metabolite measure on most all Organic Acids tests (Genova, GPL/Mosaic, Vibrant). See my post on Magnesium for other ways to support the reduction of quinolinic acid.

Inhibits Quinolinic Acid Induced Lipid Peroxidation:

AIDS-related encephalopathy, including AIDS dementia complex (ADC) and the opportunistic disease, herpes simplex encephalitis (HSE), are postulated to arise due to the release of neurotoxic products, such as quinolinic acid (QUIN), by activated microglial cells in the brain. QUIN causes a cascade of events to occur, which leads to the production of reactive oxygen species (ROS), these being ultimately responsible for oxidative neurotoxicity. The antiherpes antiviral aciclovir has been reported to protect against neuron loss in HSE, but the mechanism for this neuroprotection is unknown. Therefore, this study was conducted to investigate whether aciclovir has the ability to inhibit QUIN-induced lipid peroxidation in rat brain homogenates, after in-vitro and in-vivo exposure to QUIN and aciclovir. The thiobarbituric acid (TBA) assay was the method used to analyse lipid peroxidation. Rat brains were also examined histologically after in-vivo exposure to visually assess whether neuron loss was suppressed. The results show that aciclovir inhibits the QUIN-induced lipid peroxidation, in a dose-dependent manner. Furthermore, aciclovir reduced necrosis of hippocampal neurons and retained the characteristic morphology, integrity and arrangement of these cells. Thus, it appears that aciclovir has neuroprotective properties, which could possibly be useful in the treatment of AIDS-related encephalopathy. [2]


[1] Quinolinic Acid: An Endogenous Neurotoxin with Multiple Targets. Rafael Lugo-Huitrón;

Oxid Med Cell Longev. 2013; 2013: 104024. Published online 2013 Sep 5. doi: 10.1155/2013/104024 PMCID: PMC3780648. PMID: 24089628

[2] Müller AC, Maharaj H, Maharaj DS, Daya S. Aciclovir protects against quinolinic-acid-induced oxidative neurotoxicity. Journal of Pharmacy and Pharmacology. 2005;57(7):883–888.

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