The ingredient – branded as Magtein and distributed by AIDP, Inc. – is covered for all food and beverage formats by US patent 8,178,132 .
Magtein – which is self-affirmed GRAS, soluble in water, odorless, tasteless and colorless - has already attracted a lot of interest in the dietary supplements and food sector following the publication of studies the journal Neuron and The Journal of Neuroscience.
The former study showed that Magtein could increase learning ability, working memory, and short- and long-term memory in young and aged rats. It also showed that common magnesium compounds do not effectively improve brain magnesium levels (Neuron. Vol. 65, pp. 165-177).
The latter study suggested that the ingredient could elevate magnesium levels in the brain and offer a “novel approach for enhancing synaptic plasticity in a regional-specific manner leading to enhancing the efficacy of extinction without enhancing or impairing fear memory formation”.
The ingredient was discovered by Guosong Liu, MD, PhD, and a group of scientists at Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), and Tsinghua University in Beijing, China.
“We truly believe Magtein is a game changing ingredient that will benefit millions of busy and stressed consumers by helping to improve their quality of life,” says Edward Lee Ph.D., AIDP president.
Magnesium supplement sales are rising sharply
According to data from SPINS, sales of vitamins and supplements with magnesium as a primary ingredient were up 19% to $11.87m in the natural retail channel (excluding Whole Foods Market) and up 24.6% to $18.61m in the conventional retail channel (excluding Walmart) in the 52 weeks to August 6.
To put this into context, total sales of vitamins and dietary supplements over the same period across both channels were up 7.5% to $3.2bn.