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High Glutamate Keeps Cysteine Levels Low?

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15,786
Another potential vicious cycle:

In rhesus macaques, cysteine levels decrease already within 1-2 weeks after infection with the closely related virus SIVmac. HIV-infected persons and SIV-infected rhesus macaques have also, on the average, substantially increased plasma glutamate levels. Increased glutamate levels aggravate the cysteine deficiency by inhibiting the membrane transport of cystine. Even moderately elevated extracellular glutamate levels as they occur in HIV-infected persons cause a substantial decrease of intracellular cysteine levels.

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/8441757

Glutamate gets high, inhibits cystine transport, less cysteine available for glutathione, more glutamate hanging around with nowhere to go ...

I'm starting to see ME/CFS as a compelling argument for the theory of Intelligent Design :p
 

aaron_c

Senior Member
Messages
691
Ancient thread, I know...but this may have answered a question I have.

I just started taking NAC because I think I might be deficient in cysteine. It has helped to some degree with memory/focus and sleep issues. Unfortunately, those issues seem to benefit from a higher dose of NAC than my guts can take. I tried to fix this by adding glutamine, which sort of fixed the diarrhea. Unfortunately, the NAC appears to have become less helpful around the same time I added more glutamine. Perhaps this is because enough of the glutamine becomes glutamate, and that is interfering with cysteine transport?
 

Gondwanaland

Senior Member
Messages
5,077
No matter what variables, I frequently read testimonials saying that NAC benefits fade out pretty quickly. So it is in my personal experience as well.
 

aaron_c

Senior Member
Messages
691
What benefits are you referring to @Gondwanaland ? I ask partly because I haven't really read about people taking NAC to help with concentration.
 

Gondwanaland

Senior Member
Messages
5,077
What benefits are you referring to @Gondwanaland ? I ask partly because I haven't really read about people taking NAC to help with concentration.
Against inflammation (pain). But it gave me massive BP drops in BP about 2h after lunch.

Also I read that it raises glutathione (good) but glutathione in its turn can convert to glutamate (bad).
It's worked consistently for me over several years now.
I felt its good effects :thumbsup:, but couldn't bear the sides :thumbdown:
 
Messages
15,786
Also I read that it raises glutathione (good) but glutathione in its turn can convert to glutamate (bad).
This wouldn't really qualify as bad (if it actually can happen) since it would be releasing glutamate that was already on the loose before it combined to form glutathione. It wouldn't result in any net increase in glutamate, except (theoretically) if supplementing glutathione instead of NAC.