And we thought we might have found the ideal solution to those upcoming physical and mental problems: a supplement from Live Cell Research that goes by the name of Midogen.
Midogen, Live Cell Research tells us on the single web page devoted to this product, contains PQQ, ‘a coenzyme with the potential to reverse cellular aging by activating genes that induce mitochondrial biogenesis’ which sounds like something out of a popular movie series. Whether that series was Star Trek or the Terminator we weren’t quite sure, so we looked a little deeper into Midogen to find out more about it – and maybe what that movie series was.
The three main ingredients of Live Cell Research’s Midogen are:
NADH, which although safe in its dosage here has been shown to be ineffective for most conditions while ‘mildly beneficial’ in increasing short-term athletic performance.
Trans Resveratrol, which is indeed written up in studies as claimed, but unfortunately, the resveratrol here is derived from Japanese Knotweed – classified as one of the most invasive plants on the planet – and the studies referred to by Live Cell Research were all about the resveratrol found in something much more pleasant: red wine.
PQQ – or Pyrroloquinoline Quinone to give it its proper name, has also been researched and written up, however, only under laboratory conditions and on animal cells. Instead of the promised improvement at cellular level, PQQ testing on humans can only confirm its antioxidation effects.
So all in all, even though the ingredients of Midogen might sound and look impressive, there’s not a lot of evidence that they’re as impressive as they appear.
This is a difficult question to answer, because although reference sources such as WebMD don’t list any adverse effects, we’ve got to remember that both NADH and PQQ are fairly new on the scene, meaning both side effects and safety in the long term have yet to be established.
How much do you want to pay? You could try a single month’s supply – one bottle – for $46.99 + $3.95 shipping… but if you want to save on shipping and get 3 bottles at a lower unit price, the price per bottle comes down to $39.00. And if you’re planning on buying a six-month supply, the price per bottle goes down to $35.71.
According to the Midogen website, in answer to the question, ‘How many bottles should I order?’ we’re told, ‘The average order for new customers is 3 bottles and that’s what we recommend to start. But we do have many repeat customers, so you can enjoy our best pricing on the 6 bottle package.’
OK, so you can call us picky if you want, but we always look at the fine print. Sometimes we rather wish we hadn’t and this is one of those times. With phrases in there that read ‘These products and services are not intended for this with preexisting medical conditions’, ‘Consult with your Physician’ and from the terms and conditions page: ‘THESES LIVING CELL RESEARCH, LLC. TERMS AND CONDITIONS’ we tend to wonder two things.
1) How accurate the cutting and pasting is in the Live Cell Research marketing department … and, along those lines…
2) How accurate the measuring and mixing is in the Live Cell Research manufacturing department.
The word that springs to mind here can’t be anything other than ‘sloppy’. And the phrase that certainly doesn’t spring to mind here is ‘confidence inspiring’.
And the same goes for the studies Live Cell Research use to promote Midogen: we might just forgive them for maintaining the resveratrol in Japanese Knotweed isn’t any different from the resveratrol in red wine (and we know which of those we prefer).
But it’s difficult to trust claims about the effects on users of another ingredient – PQQ – which has been tested not on human users, but in a glass dish in a laboratory on mouse liver cells.
That’s just plain dishonest.
So on the basis of definite inaccuracy online, potential inaccuracy in the factory and the lack of honesty regarding at least one of its ingredients, we’re sorry, but we’re going to have to reject Midogen.
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When arriving at the single-page sales website for Midogen, visitors are treated to very little information about the product, with none of the end benefits like ‘YOU’LL FEEL AMAZING!’ usually found on other supplement sites.
In fact, just glancing at the text gives the impression Live Cell Research has a two-pronged sales strategy – one of them being fear, as in, from their web page: ‘You may be facing unique age-related health concerns. And things are only going to get harder as your body grows older.’ (Thanks, guys).
And then they go all scientific on us, as in: ‘a coenzyme with the potential to reverse cellular aging by activating genes that induce mitochondrial biogenesis, or the spontaneous formation of new mitochondria in aging cells’. (Huh? We now think that movie series we were wondering about would be the original Star Trek because of that ‘biogenesis’, but we could be wrong. After all, there’s always ‘Terminator: Genisys’, isn’t there?).
At present, all we have to go on is that you’re supposed to take one capsule a day – but there’s nothing on the label we can find – or on the web – that lets you know whether you’re supposed to take it before, during or after meals.
And then the small print and terms and conditions look like they’ve been inexpertly cut from elsewhere and pasted here. (And as for how they spell ‘capsule’ – capsule, indeed!).
All in all, hardly a website that inspires confidence in the product, even though the rave reviews towards the end might just indicate otherwise.
Unfortunately, rave reviews are all we’ve got to go on, even though other websites we’ve managed to find aren’t exactly complimentary about the dosage amounts (20 mg/day for PQQ is recommended, apparently, but Midogen only contains 5 mg).
So, still blinded by science, we discover Midogen is a ‘mitochondrial enhancer’, aiming to improve energy and longevity by acting at the mitochondrial level of cells.
In plain English, we’re also told on the sales website that ingredient NADH ‘is known to reverse the signs of aging that come with declining cellular function’ … ingredient PQQ is linked to, ‘new mitochondrial growth in cells’ … and Trans-Resveratrol, quote: ‘offers a next-generation solution to the advance toxins and containment we face today’.
What a containment is, we have no idea, but we’re sure glad we’ve got a next-generation solution for it.
Well, according to all those testimonials on that single-page sales website, of course, it does! Although if you look closely at some of the most enthusiastic of enthusiastic reviews there, you’ll notice they’re from people combining Midogen with another one of Live Cell Research’s supplements. Surely they’re not hinting we should invest in two products instead of just the one. They wouldn’t do that … would they? Especially since there’s no link to any other of their products on that web page.
Midogen contains only three main ingredients, listed as:
NADH (or ‘nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide (NAD) + hydrogen (H)’ – vital to the production of NAD+, which ‘supports cellular activity by promoting communication within the cell, and is known to reverse the signs of aging that come with declining cellular function’.
PQQ (or ‘Pyrroloquinoline Quinone’) – which ‘has the potential to reverse cellular aging’. Has the potential, indeed.
Trans-Resveratrol – found in the root of Japanese Knotweed, one of the planet’s most invasive plant species. It’s an antioxidant which can also, thankfully, be found in red wine, which is where we’d much rather find ours, thank you very much.
WebMD thinks Trans-Resveratrol is ‘LIKELY SAFE’ (their words) when taken by mouth in doses up to 250 mg daily for up to 3 months. Since each serving of Midogen contains 300 mg of Japanese Knotweed (50% Trans-Resveratrol) users should be OK.
NADH also seems safe with its dosage of 10 mg a day, for up to 12 weeks.
PQQ, on the other hand, is something WebMD hasn’t listed yet, but elsewhere we did find using PQQ for up to twelve weeks is OK, but long-term use ‘could cause toxicity in the kidneys and liver’.
This from the Midogen website: “As such, it is completely safe for most people, with little risk of side effects. Just be sure to read and follow the instructions on the label. We also recommend that you talk to your doctor if you’re currently taking any prescription medication before using Midogen™, or any other vitamin supplement.”
Oh, heavens, yes! Many, many positive reviews – and all of them on the Midogen web page, surprise, surprise. Not a single even slightly negative one there, though. And among all those six-stars-out-of-five reviews are a few subtle suggestions that Midogen should be taken in conjunction with another company product (so buy them both, already!)
Then again, looking elsewhere on the web, we found Rose’s story, some of which we’re quoting here: “When I purchased the Active Stem Cell I was on Facebook and out of nowhere this advertisement appears. They don’t mention prices just the guarantee.
Before I knew what was going on I was conned into buying the three-month supply. Since it takes more than a month before you feel it working. Then a salesman calls me back to tell me about Midogen. How it piggy back the Active Stem Cell. Now that’s another 3-month supply. When I called to speak to one of the agents. I asked her so what can I expect to happen. Her reply was I don’t know we sell other products here. I asked her well am I going to see a difference in my skin. Her reply was I don’t know.
We found this on the Midogen website: ‘At Live Cell Research, we take great pride in our products. We use only the best ingredients. We proudly keep all of our manufacturing and customer service in Southern California. We maintain the highest manufacturing standards in the industry, exceeding cGMP guidelines. As such, all of our products come with a 90-day money-back guarantee. You can return your order for any reason. We will gladly refund your money, no questions asked.’
We think we’ve found only one way of buying Midogen – and that’s online, through its dedicated single web page. It’s not featured on any other online marketplace anywhere, at least not that we can see.