Mitochondria provide energy as adenosine triphosphate (ATP), the form of energy our cells can use to grow and divide. Mitochondria use molecular oxygen to extract a lot of energy that would otherwise be lost, and foodstuff is eventually converted to low energy water and carbon dioxide.
This great energy-converting efficiency comes at a cost: mitochondria produce strong oxidants like hydrogen peroxide and the superoxide and hydroxyl radicals as by-products. All of the cell sophisticated antioxidant mechanisms (including vitamin C, glutathione and vitamin E) can’t completely protect mitochondria from slow but persistent damage. This oxidative stress makes mitochondria age at a faster pace than the rest of the cell, because oxidation of lipids, proteins, RNA, and DNA is faster. Indeed, oxidative damage to mitochondrial DNA (the only organelle with its own DNA outside the nucleus) is 8 to 10-fold higher than the damage found in nuclear DNA. Oxidative damage also adversely affects the inner mitochondrial membrane, where the crucial enzyme ATPase is located and where ATP is produced. The phospholipids of the inner mitochondrial membrane change and become even more sensitive to oxidative damage. These changes are bound to affect membrane fluidity and permeability and will certainly impair the ability of mitochondria to meet cellular energy demands.
Up to now, this information has been translated into the topical application of alpha lipoic acid, acetyl carnitine and various antioxidants in anti-age skin care products. We isolate the mitochondrial fraction from fresh cauliflower florets using proprietary methods.