NIU’s Global Round-up: DSM’s vitamin A-related patents, French authorities issue joint supplement warnings, and more

By Stephen Daniells

- Last updated on GMT

© Getty Images / bluebay2014
© Getty Images / bluebay2014
It’s a global industry and there’s a lot happening. We know it’s not always easy keeping up with everything that’s happening around the world that could impact the US dietary supplements industry. The answer? Our weekly round-up of key news from across the globe.


DSM files flurry of patents around vitamin A derivatives

Dutch ingredients giant DSM has filed a series of patents on enzymatic processes that enable an alternative way to produce vitamin A aldehyde and its derivatives.

In the patents, DSM outlines processes to produce vitamin A aldehyde (retinal), and the conversion of this into vitamin A alcohol, and then into retinyl esters, including long chain esters and acetate.

Maria Pavlidou, head of marketing communications at DSM, told NutraIngredients-LATAM​ that it was too early to comment in detail on the patent filings but said the publications reflected “important work that DSM Nutritional Products is doing on its core vitamins”.

Pavlidou said many countries suffered from vitamin A deficiency – a 2009 WHO report, for example, indicated the deficiency affected 190 million preschool children and 19.1 million pregnant women alone.

“So, vitamin A is a key nutrient and it is important to innovate and bring it to the market to the people who need it,”​ she said.


French authorities issue warning to avoid joint health supplements

The French Agency for Food, Environmental and Occupational Health & Safety (ANSES) has warned pregnant or breastfeeding women, children, diabetic or pre-diabetics, asthmatics, those with food allergies or on sodium, potassium or calcium-restricted diets, to refrain from consuming supplements containing glucosamine and/or chondroitin sulphate.

The warning came in response to a series of reported adverse events related to the supplements, ranging from digestive disorders and abdominal pain to skin rashes, itching, or hepatitis.

In response, Synadiet, a French-based national union for food supplements, said that ANSES mentions 74 reports of adverse effects in 9 years (from 2009 to 2018), and that, “only 9 are likely and 2 are very likely attributable to the intake of dietary supplements containing glucosamine and / or chondroitin”​.

“These dietary supplements have their place in the strategy of management of populations for which a pathology is not declared but whose discomfort is important enough to consider the use of anti-inflammatories with known adverse effects.”

For more on this, please click HERE​.


NZ nootropic firm wants to become 'world's most iconic brain health brand'

Brain health tests © Getty Images nevarpp
© Getty Images / nevarpp

According to a report on NutraIngredients-Asia​, New Zealand-based Ārepa has plans to become "the world's most iconic brain health brand"​, with its patented nootropic formula and science-backed claims.

The formula is based on four main ingredients: polyphenol- and flavonoid-rich Enzogenol (a pure New Zealand pine tree bark extract produced by Kiwi firm ENZO Nutraceuticals), antioxidant-rich New Zealand blackcurrant extract, and 100% pure L-theanine and green tea extract — both sourced from Japan.

Ārepa has partnered with the Centre for Brain Research at the University of Auckland, where the firm has undertaken two double-blind, crossover RCTs using its formula.

“Right now, there's a lot of interesting research emerging around the sports nutrition benefits of the NZ blackcurrant extract, and we are just at the tip of the iceberg of discovering its effects on cognitive performance,” ​said founder Angus Brown.

“Our goal is to become the world's most iconic brain health brand. We are in discussions with and open to new discussions with beverage and supplement MNCs that are interested in partnering with us for global expansion.”

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