Ribose, sometimes call D-ribose on labels, is a 5-carbon monosaccharide that is present in the body and is part of both DNA molecules and the body’s cellular energy pathway that includes ATP. Bioenergy has been manufacturing its branded form of the molecule for more than a decade and has marketed it on its sports nutrition and heart health benefits.
According to a recent review article in the journal Advances in Bioscience and Clinical Medicine, D-ribose is a key part of healthy mitochondrial function. “D-ribose is a naturally occurring monosaccharide found in the cells and particularly in the mitochondria is essential in energy production. Without sufficient energy, cells cannot maintain integrity and function. Supplemental D-ribose has been shown to improve cellular processes when there is mitochondrial dysfunction,” the authors wrote.
The ingredient has been extensively studied. The company says there are more than 110 studies that support the ingredient’s effects. A search on ‘D-ribose’ on the PubMed database brings up almost 1,400 studies mentioning the ingredient.
Marianne McDonagh, Bioenergy’s vice president of sales, said the new approval will boost the market for the ingredient. McDonagh said the company is forecasting that the market for the ingredient in Europe will grow by as much as 20% with the new applications that the approval makes possible.
“Before EFSA took over for all Novel Applications, Bioenergy Ribose has been sold in Europe for dietary supplement applications only. With the success of Bioenergy Ribose in dietary supplements, we as a company made the decision to broaden our market to food & beverage in Europe, and our approval process began,” she said.
D-ribose is a common ingredient in many dietary supplements positioned in the sports and energy categories. But not all of the products on the shelf with this ingredient on the label are sourcing the ingredient from Bioenergy. McDonagh said Bioenergy, which is based in Ham Lake, MN, has taken an approach of education rather than litigation to deal with this knockoff ingredient problem.
“Most of the products out there contain Bioenergy Ribose, but there are still some products that contain the non-branded material, and unfortunately, are putting out inferior ribose products on the market. We have done a great job at identifying who is infringing on our patents. Since we don’t believe in being confrontational in the industry, we have chosen to show the facts and simply point out why our product is better. This approach has worked out quite well for us over the years, and shows our strong commitment to transparency as a company and in our Bioenergy Ribose brand,” she said.