SaraPEPP Nu is a natural ingredient which aims to improve cerebral blood flow, cognitive function, working memory and attention.
The oil soluble liquid, which has a grapefruit-like taste and odour, is being marketed as being suitable for dietary supplements, MCT-oil-based functional foods and food-grade emulsions.
The acute and chronic effects of SaraPEPP Nu on cognitive performance and cerebral blood flow (CBF) were tested in a randomised, double blind, placebo controlled study with 81 healthy men and women with an average age of 42.4 years.
The study results noted the effects of acute supplementation were: Significantly faster performance on the reaction times of all attention tasks; Improved accuracy of RVIP (Rapid Visual Information Processing) performance; Improvement of neural efficacy demonstrated
Effects of chronic supplementation were: Significantly faster performance across all cognition tasks; Reduced ratings of mental fatigue; and Improvement of neural efficacy demonstrated in the CBF study arm in response to task performance.
Dr. Torsten Grothe, portfolio manager food & health, explains that what sets this ingredient ahead of other brain enhancers on the market, is the speed with which its been proven to start having an effect.
“Thanks to the superb bioavailability of the lead compound 'hydroxy-α-sanshool' we are able to measure improvement of cognitive performance just only one hour after intake. Additionally the long term data looks very promising too.
“Furthermore the product is suitable for many popular application forms. Beside softgel caps it could be easily formulated into dairy products, bars and especially beverages and shots, without any crucial off-taste properties. That suites perfectly to the trend towards attractive application forms.”
Grothe adds that the rising categories of nootropic beverages and shots with MCT oil fits perfectly for the new ingredient with the expectation for use within products targeted towards the young, middle aged and the elderly.
With a recommended daily dosage of 1400 mg – 2800 mg, it can also be blended with other lipid-soluble nutrients such as carotenoids, Omegas and Vitamins A & E.
Many factors are involved in brain ageing like a reduced release of neurotransmitters, a decrease in receptor density and sensitivity and a reduced cardiovascular function in the brain.
Hydroxy-α-sanshool and Zanthoxylum-extracts have been reported to exert potential mechanisms to improve brain activity, such as increased acetylcholine and gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA) release (Nakamura, T., et al, 2006).
Hydroxy-α-sanshool also shows structural similarities to some of the native receptor ligands and to monoamine neurotransmitters like serotonin and dopamine.
The influence of the supplement was tested using the Computerized Mental Performance Assessment System (COMPASS) and quantitative Near Infrared Spectroscopy (qNIRS). COMPASS allows assessments across major cognitive abilities like attention, alertness, executive function and memory.
A total quantity of 2800 mg of SaraPEPP Nu was taken on a twice-daily basis over a period of 57 days. Cognitive performance was assessed post-dose on day 1 (acute effects) and day 57 (chronic effects).
No signs of potential side effects were reported.
The company — founded in 1991 as a business unit of Switzerland's largest cosmetics manufacturer, Mibelle Cosmetics — had been developing ingredients exclusively for use in beauty and skincare products before making its move into the nutricosmetics segment.
The firm recently revealed its move into the beauty from within supplements space with its new ingedients for hair loss, collagen production, and skin stem cell vitalisation: AnaGain Nu, DracoBelle Nu and PhytoCellTec Md Nu,
But now it is delving further into the supplements arena.
Dr. Fred Zülli, Managing Director at Mibelle Biochemistry, says: “Of course, 'beauty from within' is one of our core expertise as we have been successfully in the international cosmetic ingredient business for over 25 years.
“Beside a portfolio for beauty applications we would like to offer a broader range of product applications. We have ingredients for cardiovascular support and slimming in our pipeline too, planned to be launched within 2020.”
Zülli adds that it’s expected that the global Cognition Supplements Market will grow at a CAGR of 13.9% during the period 2018-2022 (Infiniti Research Limited).
“We consider cognition as one of the big topics in the nutrition & health arena. Everybody needs to deliver today a very high cognitive performance, in every daily situation.”