Plasmalogens are crucial lipids in the body and can be found in all human tissue, especially the brain, heart, lungs, eyes, and kidneys. They play a role in neurotransmission and impact various cellular functions. When plasmalogen levels drop, several physiological and biochemical processes are affected. Our bodies naturally produce plasmalogen for a limited time and its production decreases with age.
Plasmalogen levels begin to increase in the fetal stage and start to decline after 30, and significantly decrease after age 60. As they are prominent in key organs, their decline can lead to deterioration of these tissues as we age. Low plasmalogen levels may indicate disease severity. Recent studies suggest that individuals with the APOE4 gene, who may have a higher risk of dementia or Alzheimer's, have lipid dysfunction including reduced plasmalogen levels.