The cell needs ATP in order to keep functioning well, and NAD+ supports the continued manufacture of ATP inside the mitochondria. That’s the direct mechanism at play, and there are consequences when cells have reduced NAD+ levels across the board. MetroBiochem elaborates:
“[R]educed levels of NAD+ are linked to aging and numerous diseases, including mitochondrial dysfunction, inflammation and a variety of associated diseases. These levels decline as humans age and remain depleted during disease states.”
The mitochondrial diseases that MetroBiochem seeks to treat are devastating, but they’re also rare and specific—not treating otherwise healthy people with a substance that will allegedly slow the effects of aging, period. That could go a long way to explaining why SOCOM is calling this a “nutraceutical” project rather than a prescription drug.