Both nicotinamide mononucleotide (NMN) and nicotinamide riboside (NR) effectively revitalize cells of human blood vessels by halting oxidative stress, a key contributor to aging. They reinstate vital nitric oxide necessary for optimal blood vessel health. SARS-CoV-2 infects human artery cells. It causes a reduction in NAD+ and nitric oxide (NO) levels, alongside heightened levels of reactive oxygen species (ROS), signaling the presence of oxidative stress. NR safeguards against the decline in nitric oxide production and the increase in ROS. NMN halts the rise of ROS and nearly eliminates the loss of nitric oxide production. The battle against COVID-19 was long and hard. However, amid this seemingly never-ending fight, an unexpected source of support came to the surface. It came in the form of NAD+ precursors – nicotinamide mononucleotide and nicotinamide riboside. Researchers at the University of Colorado Boulder have revealed the capacity of these compounds to address the cardiovascular vulnerabilities linked to the virus. These NAD+ precursors, crucial for generating cellular energy, seem to possess the potential to revitalize cells of blood vessels impacted by SARS-CoV-2. COVID-19 and Cardiovascular Disease The deadly COVID-19 pandemic escalated quickly into a worldwide emergency. Not only did it result in numerous fatalities across the globe, but it also exposed survivors to increased susceptibility to cardiovascular disease (CVD). Scientists have firmly linked the seriousness of the infection with the later emergence of CVD. To confront this escalating issue, researchers at the University of Colorado Boulder ventured into exploring NAD+ precursors as potential remedies. NMN and NR: Restoring Vitality to Blood Vessel Cells During their research, the focus of the study was on human aorta endothelial cells (HAECs). These are found in the innermost layer of the body’s largest artery, the aorta. HAECs make nitric oxide (NO), a crucial signaling molecule that is responsible for blood vessel dilation. Infection with SARS-CoV-2 triggered a series of detrimental changes in these cells. Thus, COVID-19-afflicted HAECs exhibited increased production of reactive oxygen species (ROS), leading to oxidative stress, a cellular damage phenomenon. Additionally, they displayed reduced NO levels as well as low levels of NAD+. This indicated a link between diminished NAD+ and COVID-19-induced blood vessel dysfunction. NMN and NR: A Potential Solution The researchers wanted to find out whether replenishing NAD+ could rejuvenate these compromised HAECs. For this, the scientists treated the HAECs with two different NAD+ precursors: nicotinamide riboside (NR) and nicotinamide mononucleotide (NMN). The NR treatment effectively restored levels of NO and ROS to normal, suggesting that it can rejuvenate HAECs affected by COVID-19. On the other hand, NMN supplement intake not only elevated the production of NO to near-normal levels but also significantly reduced the production of ROS. These findings indicate that NMN, like NR, has the potential to rejuvenate blood vessel cells impacted by the COVID-19 virus. The NMN vs. NR Debate While both NMN and NR displayed remarkable abilities to rejuvenate HAECs, it’s worth noting that NMN anti-aging supplement intake came quite close to achieving statistically normal NO levels. The difference observed could be attributed to the cell count tested for each of the NAD+ precursors, with NMN having a larger sample size. Further studies comparing NMN and NR are warranted to conclusively determine which, if either, is superior. To date, there have been limited studies directly comparing the effects of NMN and NR in humans. Some studies have suggested that both precursors have similar effects on metabolism in healthy adults. Anecdotal evidence, such as Bryan Johnson’s experiences in a longevity experiment, has also indicated comparable results between NMN and NR. Until more comprehensive studies take place, it appears that neither of the two compounds holds a clear advantage over the other. NAD+ Precursors and COVID-19 In the ongoing fight against COVID-19, the potential role of NAD+ precursors, NMN and NR, in rejuvenating blood vessel cells offers a glimmer of hope. These precursors have shown promise in preventing oxidative stress and NO depletion. Both of which are closely linked to cardiovascular dysfunction and disease in COVID-19 patients. As the world continues to face the repercussions of the devastating virus, the pursuit of effective treatments shall continue. The study of NAD+ precursors like NMN and NR may ultimately provide a new avenue for mitigating the long-term cardiovascular risks faced by COVID-19 survivors. Until then, further research will showcase the full extent of their potential in this critical battle.