“The Duocap technology led to an approximately 2-fold increase in viable cells in the small intestine when ingested with a meal,” wrote researchers led by Prof. Koen Venema from the Centre for Healthy Eating & Food Innovation (HEFI) at Maastricht University’s School of Nutrition and Translational Research in Metabolism (NUTRIM) in the journal Beneficial Microbes.
“This fold increase seems insignificant, but may biologically just be a tipping point between an efficacious and non-functional product.”
"Investing in science"
The study investigated how a blend of five probiotic strains (Bifidobacterium lactis UM-B1, B. longum UM-B2, Lactobacillus acidophilus UM-L1, L. plantarum UM-L2, and L. brevis UM-L3) survived in a capsule-within-capsule (Duocap) containing Ahiflower oil, compared to the strains as a powder (with or without Ahiflower oil), or the strains in the inner capsule only (no Ahiflower oil).
Speaking with NutraIngredients-USA, Caroline Beckman, founder and CEO of Nouri and co-author on the paper, said: “This study is significant because it’s our first, and it speaks to our commitment to science. There are not many year-one companies investing in science.
“We’re aiming for one or so publications every year as we move forward, and we’re very passionate about gut and immune health. This study is a first good step for us.”
Nouri offers a range of products that are capsules within capsules – the inner capsules contains probiotics, and this is surrounded by plant-based omega-rich oils (Ahiflower).
“The reason we went with Ahiflower is that it’s a highly sustainable product with omega-3, 6 and 9 without the challenges of fish oil,” explained Beckman.
The new study used the validated, dynamic in vitro model of the stomach and small intestine called TIM-1 at Maastricht University in the Netherlands.
The researchers performed experiments in both the gastric compartment of the model and the complete stomach plus small intestine system.
The results showed that survival of the strains after transit through the complete gastrointestinal tract was 2-fold higher for the strains within the Duocap capsule with Ahiflower oil present, compared to the strains within the inner capsule or the powder.
“In these experiments, Ahiflower oil did have an additional benefit,” wrote the researchers. “… the presence of the polyunsaturated fatty acids contained in the outer capsule … protected the blend of probiotics in the small intestine.”
Source: Beneficial Microbes
Published online ahead of print, doi: 10.3920/BM2019.0209
“Survival of a probiotic-containing product using capsule-within-capsule technology in an in vitro model of the stomach and small intestine (TIM-1)”
Authora: K. Venema, J. Verhoeven, C. Beckman, D. Keller