Pharmaceutical firm partners psychobiotic startup for first foray into microbiome modulation

By Nikki Cutler

- Last updated on GMT

Getty | ChrisChrisW
Getty | ChrisChrisW
Neuraxpharm Group, a pharmaceutical firm focused on the central nervous system (CNS), has announced its first foray in the probiotics category after signing a European distribution deal with startup firm Bened Biomedical Co.

Bened Biomedical, a 2015 spin-out from Taiwan-based National Yang-Ming University, has given Neuraxpharm exclusive rights to market its probiotic Lactobacillus plantarum​ PS128 which works to alleviate mental disorders by exploiting the gut-brain axis.

The new product will be manufactured in Europe and will first be launched in the Italian market, followed by other countries.

Dr. Jörg-Thomas Dierks, CEO at Neuraxpharm, said: "We are delighted to launch our first probiotic into the European market.​ 

"Our mission is to raise the standards of mental health care, and we continue to be committed to offering diversified and affordable products. We are deeply aware of the substantial unmet need in this area, and our goal is to make a proven and positive difference in the lives of millions of people struggling with mental health.”

Several studies​ have shown that probiotics can help modulate the gut microbiome, allowing it to produce metabolites which interact with the enteric nervous system and the central nervous system.

Judit Pont, corporate communication at Neuraxpharm, adds that the firm believes microbiome modulation could play an important role in the future of healthcare.

"Looking at several studies that have shown a cross-talk within the brain-gut-microbiome axis and the way gut and brain communicate, it quickly became apparent that gut-brain health would be the most promising target for a probiotic product."

Bened's psychobiotic is already distributed in China, Taiwan, Honk Kong, the US, Malaysia and Singapore. 

Mr. Frankie Cheng, CEO of Bened Biomedical, said: “I am enthusiastic to bring PS128 to the European market. We look forward to implementing this agreement with Neuraxpharm as it offers a unique approach to the support of people battling CNS disorders, which we believe will be welcomed by doctors and patients alike.”

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