Kyowa Hakko launches new amino acid blend, revamps quality message
The new ingredient is a combination of Kyowa’s time tested Setria product with L-citrulline and aims to supply the demand for ingredients that purport to boost nitric oxide (NO) production. This has been a not topic in sports nutrition lately. Increased NO production is postulated to dilate blood vessels and boost circulation with benefits for working muscles.
Data on NO production
Setria is Kyowa’s branded form of glutathione, often referred to as the body’s ‘master antioxidant.’ The company has done studies proving the ingredient’s ability to boost blood glutathione levels as well as its capacity to support the immune system. With the combination of l-citrulline, often used by itself by formulators as an NO boosting ingredient, Kyowa discovered a synergistic effect, said Karen Todd, RD, Kyowa's global director of brand marketing.
“It is a patent pending blend for sustained nitric oxide production,” Todd told NutraIngredients-USA.
Among the development tasks for the new ingredient was to figure out the best ratios of the amino acids, which is part of the patent application, Todd said. Kyowa has preliminary data that supports the synergy claim. An in vitro study measuring nitrate levels in human umbilical cord vein cells, L-citrulline by itself had no statistically relevant effect in comparison to the control. Setria alone boosted nitrate levels a small amount, but used together, the blend boosted levels by more than 25%. The company also claims its data shows the blend sustains NO levels in the bloodstream twice as long as comparable doses of l-arginine or l-citrulline.
New focus on quality
The launch of the new ingredient coincides with a revamp of Kyowa’s communication about quality with its customers and with end users. Todd said the company has been bombarded in recent years with inquiries direct from customers about ingredients, which to her signals an increasing sophistication in the market. She said end users were interested in the ingredients themselves and the science behind them, as well as wanting to know where they could buy them. So she said Kyowa decided to be completely transparent about where the ingredients show up in the marketplace. The new ingredients website, called kyowaquality.com, has a search function for finding finished products featuring each ingredient.
“We get requests from consumers all the time about where they can find the products. People want to know where the ingredients come from. In Europe and especially in Asia there is a halo of high quality for products coming from Japan,” she said.
Upcoming online event
NutraIngredients-USA is hosting an online event in sports nutrition on May 18th. Three online seminars will focus on science, branding and overall market considerations. For more information or to register, click here.