Enzymotec comes up with high purity brain ingredient

By Alex McNally

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags: Nutrition

Enzymotec has said it can produce a 99 per cent pure form of its
brain health nutrient phosphatidylserine (PS), which will make the
product more attractive to manufacturers.

The Israeli biotech company said PS will be available globally and forms part of its Sharp PS line of products. The high level will mean more ingredients can be added to a supplement capsule. The news marks the latest step of expansion as the firm continues to roll-out its products into different markets. Enzymotec's brain health line currently has four products available, three of which contain the nutrient PS, called Sharp PS, Sharp PS Gold and Sharp PS Silver. The highest purity level available is 70 per cent. PS is present in all biological membranes but in animals is most concentrated in the brain. PS is said to regulate many metabolic processes including neuronal signaling. However the body cannot synthesize it and changes in the western diet over recent years have led to a decline in dietary uptake of the nutrient. ​The supplement, derived from soybeans, has been shown to enhance memory and cognitive performance, and is targeted at both the elderly and young adults under stress. ​These high grades allow manufacturers to produce smaller capsules or save space for additional ingredients, the firm said. The high purity also makes PS better suitable to pharmaceutical applications. A spokesperson said Enzymotec has the technology and the "know how​" to achieve these high purities, but declined to discuss what prompted development of the high grade, adding: "We do not talk about specific issues. We check the cognitive market in general; we want to be the leaders."​ Enzymotec offers PS in liquid form at 20 per cent, and in powder form between 10 to 70 per cent. In America the Food and Drug Administration allows the health claim that PS may reduce the risk of cognitive dysfunction and also that it may reduce the risk of dementia in the elderly. Expansion​ Over the past few years the firm has been developing solutions to improve the stability of phosphatidylserine for use in nutraceuticals and functional foods. ​The Israeli firm has been stretching out into new markets with its Cardiabeat sterol esters and Sharp PS gold. In the last couple of years it has announced plans to extend its marketing into India, Australia, Sweden, South Korea and the US. It also achieved novel foods approval for Cardiabeat in Europe. Enzymotec will also be taking its ingredients into the Japanese market through a deal with Itochu Chemical Frontier (ICF). Japan represents the largest single country in terms of functional food and dietary supplements. According to Euromonitor, the Japanese functional foods market is worth some $8.4bn (905bn yen), and the functional drinks market $8.1bn (959bn yen). Last year the company expanded into the Russian market with PS containing brain health products.

Related topics: Cognitive function, Botanicals, Suppliers

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