Bioenergy Ribose is the company’s branded form of D-ribose, a 5-carbon monosaccharide that regulates the body’s natural energy synthesis on a cellular level. The company says it has data showing the ingredient’s ability to replenish glycogen stores in the muscles and attenuate exercise-associated muscle soreness.
Early success in sports nutrition
One of the company’s sponsored athletes was Katherine Reutter, an Olympic short track speed skater. Reutter credited the silver medal she won in the 2010 Winter Olympics in Vancouver in part to her use of Bioenergy Ribose, which she said helped her maintain high energy levels through a punishing set of heats to reach the finals in the 1,000 meter event.
That led to the incorporation of the ingredient into many sports nutrition formulations, especially those aimed at maintaining energy rather than those purporting to support muscle protein synthesis.
But the company, which is based in Ham Lake, MN, has been seeking to expand the ingredient’s reach, and has now paired the ingredient with a coated nicotinamide ingredient. The pairing, branded as RiaGev, has been shown to have an effect on the NAD pathway, according to Penny Portner, Bioenergy’s director of marketing.
NAD production linked to cellular aging
NAD, or nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide, is a key part of the ATP energy production machinery with the mitochondria. It has been shown that NAD production decreases with age, as well as being associated with certain conditions such as cardiovascular disease. This erosion in cellular energy production is postulated as one of the mechanisms of cellular senescence.
“We currently have three animal studies that all show NAD levels are increased by 50%,” Portner told NutraIngredients-USA. “We are starting a human study right now and will have the data by the end of the summer.”
A paper published last year in the journal Advances in Bioscience and Clinical Medicine written by researchers at the University of Kansas laid out the key part D-ribose plays in mitochondrial function.
“When mitochondrial function is compromised, there can be a reduced efficiency of cellular respiration and thus a loss of ATP production. D-ribose is an ATP substrate naturally occurring within cells. When nucleotides are reduced, supplemental D-ribose has been shown to be useful in enhancing the recovery of these energy molecules. Thus, D-ribose supplementation may help to return adenine nucleotides to the cell and thereby serve as a potential therapeutic option for various pathophysiologic conditions,” they wrote.
Portner said there has been an uptick in interest in ingredients that affect mitochondrial function recently, and for this reason she feels RiaGev is hitting the market at an auspicious time.