Liposomal formulations of curcumin studied for lung cancer management

In Curcumin-loaded liposomes modulating the synergistic role of EpCAM and estrogen receptor alpha in lung cancer management, researchers investigated the in vitro potential of liposomal therapeutics utilizing curcumin-loaded PlexoZome (CUR-PLXZ) in targeting EpCAM/TROP1 and Estrogen Receptor Alpha (ERα) signalling pathways for lung cancer (LC) management. The researchers reported: "In conclusion, our findings show CUR-PLXZ's potential as a promising treatment drug for LC. CUR-PLXZ suppresses the expression of essential proteins implicated in LC growth, such as EpCAM and ER-α, at substantially lower quantities than previously reported. The improved physicochemical features of CUR-PLXZ, which could be due to higher cellular absorption, highlight the drug's versatility and potential for therapeutic use...Overall, our study contributes to the growing body of evidence supporting the potential of liposomal formulations of CUR (CUR-PLXZ) as effective anti-cancer agents." Pharmako Biotechnologies PlexoZome Curcumin was used in the study.

Precision prebiotic benefits gut microbiota health 

Clinical data published in Biomedicine & Pharmacotherapy confirms prior research demonstrating the effectiveness of Benicaros (a soluble prebiotic carrot fiber known as Rhamnogalacturonan-I or cRG-I from NutriLeads BV) in promoting a healthy gut microbiota. Daily servings as low as 300 mg of Benicaros were shown to promote growth of beneficial gut bacteria in healthy subjects. Benicaros increased the relative abundance of common beneficial bacteria, including Bifidobacterium spp. (mainly B. adolescentis and B. longum), independent of varying baseline gut microbiota compositions. “The increase in abundance of other beneficial bacterial species known for their short chain fatty acid production indicates that Benicaros increases the metabolic capacity of the gut microbiota,” said Willem M. de Vos, Ph.D., Professor of Human Microbiome at the University of Helsinki and Emeritus Distinguished Professor at Wageningen University and co-author of the study. “This suggests that Benicaros contributes to a healthy gut environment thereby supporting overall health.”

Joana Carneiro, Ph.D., NutriLeads Chief Executive Officer, added, “Benicaros consistently and predictably modulates the composition of the gut microbiota, despite the natural differences between individual gut microbiomes. The complex molecular structure of this prebiotic fiber selectively nourishes beneficial bacteria prevalent in most people. Remarkably, these beneficial effects were evident with daily servings of Benicaros as low as 300 mg.”

IBS-SSS Scores and Quality of Life on Adults with IBS

ADM announced the publication of a clinical trial on probiotic Bifidobacterium longum CECT 7347 (ES1) and postbiotic heat-treated Bifidobacterium longum CECT 7347 (HT-ES1) in Gut Microbes. The multi-center, randomized, double-blind placebo controlled human clinical trial, involved 200 adults from 18 to 65 years with IBS-D who received either 1 billion CFU of ES1 probiotic, 2.5 billion equivalent cells of heat-treated ES1 postbiotic (HT-ES1) or a placebo control over a period of 84 days. Researchers reported strong and consistent results for both the probiotic and postbiotic in a variety of outcomes, including IBS-Symptom Severity Scale (IBS-SSS) scores and quality of life.

“Digestive health can have a huge impact on everyday quality of life, and this study’s results are key to us delivering solutions that can help consumers focus on their daily activities instead of their abdominal discomfort,” said Dr. Richard Day, Vice President of Medical Affairs and Clinical Development, ADM. “This trial is the culmination of many years’ hard work, by different ADM teams, across multiple sites and countries.”

Dr. Day added: “The findings from this robust three-arm clinical trial build upon the growing body of evidence showing how supporting the health of the gut microbiome can address aspects of a person’s health and well-being, including digestive health. Taken together with the already extensive preclinical data generated for these two microbiome solution products, this manuscript adds to the already strong scientific dossier for ES1 and HT-ES1. And crucially, this is the first clinical trial to be published using the pioneering HT-ES1.”

Fruit extract blend studied for regularity and mood benefits 

NXT USA announced the publication of human clinical trial in the Journal of the American Nutrition Association that showcases the benefits of Digexin (a blend of Withania somnifera root and Abelmoschus esculentus fruit extracts) for digestive health and mood support.

The study authors reported: “Constipation, a prevalent gastrointestinal dysfunction, not only restricts social activities but also impairs both mental and physical health. Our latest research, a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled human clinical trial, confirms that Digexin stands out as a safe and effective supplement. It significantly enhances gut health by improving gastrointestinal transit times, as demonstrated by the innovative 'blue poo' test, which tracks digestion and bowel movement speeds.”

In the 60-day study, doses of 300 mg and 500 mg of Digexin were compared them against placebo. "People reported feeling better in terms of their digestive symptoms, overall quality of life, and even saw faster digestive transit times," said Eric Anderson, Managing Director, NXT USA. “Plus, they were going to the bathroom more regularly, which is always a good sign. But it wasn’t just about digestion. Sleep got better, and feelings of depression and anxiety eased up. And most importantly, the blood tests showed significant positive changes, validating that what people were reporting was supported by biomarker evidence.”

Digexin is available globally from NXT USA, Inc., and also in the U.S. and Europe through Freemen Nutra

Aronia melanocarpa supports cognitive function

Solabia Nutrition shared the news that a randomized, double‐blind, placebo‐controlled cross‐over study in healthy young adult shows Brainberry (a clinically validated extract of Aronia melanocarpa, standardized for cyanidin galactoside) supports cognitive function. The results show a significant improvement in psychomotor speed and a significant increase in BDNF after one week of supplementation. The findings have been published in the European Journal of Nutrition

In a prior double-blind placebo controlled trial, Brainberry intake resulted in significant improvement in focus and psycho-motor control and an increase in cognitive flexibility.

Solabia noted that the research demonstrates the potential of Brainberry in supporting brain fitness for all ages, and more specifically psychomotor speed and cognitive performance in young adults. 

New findings on Vitamin K2’s role in neurological health

A study led Andrea Fuso, Ph.D., a 15-year research collaborator with Gnosis by Lesaffre focusing on cognitive health, highlights vitamin K2’s role in neurological protection. Published in Cells, the research identifies a link between supplemental K2 and neurodegeneration and neuroinflammation, pointing to K2’s potential role as a supplement for support of healthy brain and cognitive function.

Dr. Fuso examined K2 as menaquinone-7 (in a reduced form) along with K2 menaquinone-4 on a model of neuroblastoma cells. The aim was to determine how forms of K2 affect the expression of genes involved in neurodegeneration and neuroinflammation, and Dr. Fuso found that K2 administration supports neurological function by creating a favorable balance of activity. K2 was shown to reduce the expression of genes associated with neurodegeneration (PSEN1 and BACE1) and neuroinflammation (IL-1β and IL-6), while simultaneously upregulating genes protecting against amyloid formation (ADAM10 and ADAM17). In addition, the researchers profiled the DNA methylation patterns of the genes and found a correlation between hypermethylation and the downregulation of PSEN1, IL-1β, and IL-6.

This new mechanistic study supports earlier work discussing K2’s roles in Alzheimer’s via gut dysbiosis.

Summarizing his research, Dr. Fuso commented, “Our earlier studies highlighted the role of B vitamins and SAMe as dietary factors connecting nutrition with the epigenetic modulation of brain disease. Now, we introduce research on a new compound crucial for cognition: Vitamin K2.”

Jean-François Jeanne, Substantiation and Applications Manager at Gnosis by Lesaffre, noted: “Our 15-year collaboration with Dr. Fuso and his team has resulted in a growing body of evidence demonstrating how ingredients of natural origin [e.g., SAMe and vitamin K2 (as MK-7)] significantly impact the function of the brain and cognitive activity. We are excited to continue our relationship and support Dr. Fuso’s further research exploring Vitamin K2 for cognitive benefits.”

GOED reports on the EPA and DHA omega-3 industry

The Global Organization for EPA and DHA Omega-3s (GOED) announced the publication of two reports on the EPA and DHA omega-3 industry.


1) The 2024 Finished Product Report, which offers a comprehensive overview of six key markets: dietary supplements, pharmaceuticals, food and beverage, pet nutrition, infant formula and clinical nutrition/medical foods. The main finding: These categories combined to reach $52.4 billion in sales in 2023, primarily influenced by inflation and higher prices. And looking more closely, the pet nutrition segment grew 8.8% annually, reaching $1.5 billion in sales in 2023; the supplement category grew, but the dollar increase was driven primarily by increased prices as a result of fish oil shortages; the DHA-fortified infant nutrition market grew 2.9% in 2023. Looking ahead, GOED said sales of EPA and DHA finished products are poised to increase an average of 3.3% annually through 2025. Request a sample of the report here.

2) A scientific report on Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) and omega-3s, which was created using GOED’s Clinical Study Database (CSD), a tool that catalogs all human clinical studies on EPA and DHA omega-3s. GOED noted that EPA+DHA have been suggested to play a potential role in reducing the symptoms associated with ADHD, and the report analyzes the studies conducted on people who have been diagnosed with ADHD, or those who have been assessed using ADHD criteria for symptoms. The report also provides key takeaways and suggests next steps for research. It is available for purchase on the GOED website for US$199. GOED members have free access to the report.

Fast help for mental wellbeing and sleep quality

Nektium’s new Vanizem botanical extract (rom the West African spice Aframomum melegueta) has been shown in a pilot study to significantly improve mood, reduce stress levels, and enhance sleep quality within just three days. The placebo-controlled crossover study, which is expected to be published in mid-2024, featured 30 healthy men and women aged 40-50 experiencing day-to-day stress and anxious feelings. All those consuming a dosage of at least 100-mg significantly reduced their Hamilton Anxiety Scale (HAM-A) scores below the threshold for anxiety by the end of the study. And using the Leeds Sleep Evaluation Questionnaire (LSEQ), which determines sleep quality based on self-reported ratings, Vanizem doses over 100mg were shown to improve sleep quality scores after the initial dose. After three days, ratings improved by more than 30% versus placebo.

Researchers also used the Profile of Mood States (POMs) measure to assess changes in tension, depression, vigor, and fatigue. The finding after three days of supplementation with a 150mg dose:

  • self-reported perceptions of tension reduced by 19%
  • fatigue reduced by 23%
  • depression reduced by 34%
  • vigor improved by 8%. 
  • total mood disturbance (TMD) scores, which are used to assess overall mood state, improved by 54% with a 100mg dosage and 77% with a 150mg dosage.

Nektium also carried out in vitro research on Vanizem (due for publication in mid-2024) that demonstrates that Aframomum melegueta targets the endocannabinoid system (ECS), a key regulator of stress and emotional responses. 

Investigating Glyphosate exposure in Europe

Concerns over health issues seen in the U.S. have prompted GCI Nutrients Europe BV to investigate Europe's Glyphosate exposure. The company aims to provide solutions to protect European consumers the widely used herbicide, which has infiltrated various aspects of the food supply chain. GCI Nutrients Europe BV reported that its initial investigations have confirmed glyphosate exposure in integrated animal farming feed supply and pre-harvest use in agro farming practices.

"Glyphosate exposure has emerged as a serious health threat, and it's imperative that we take proactive steps to mitigate its impact," said Richard Merriam, Founder at GCI Nutrients. "We are committed to leading the charge in Europe and offering effective solutions to safeguard consumers against glyphosate-related health risks."

As part of its efforts,GCI Nutrients is introducing its clinically proven Glyphosate Detox Formula to contract manufacturing and bespoke brand companies in Europe. The company said the formula provides an additional layer of defense against the known health dangers of glyphosate exposure.

"GCI Nutrients Europe BV is dedicated to promoting health and wellness by addressing the challenges posed by glyphosate exposure," added Merriam. "We believe that our Glyphosate Detox Formula will play a crucial role in protecting European consumers and ensuring the safety of our food supply."

Safety and efficacy of AlphaWave L-Theanine for stress-relief, mental focus

Ethical Naturals Inc. (ENI) shared the news that AlphaWave L-Theanine has been further substantiated by another published study supporting the ingredient’s safety and efficacy. Published in Neurology and Therapy, the randomized, double-blind, parallel clinical trial enrolled 30 adults, aged 18-65, who were supplemented with AlphaWave or placebo for 28 days. The finding: AlphaWave L-Theanine was safe, significantly decreased perceived stress, improved sleep quality, and enhanced cognitive attention in the studied population. ENI said the study confirms the key S/F claims that AlphaWave helps relax without drowsiness, promotes mental clarity and focus, and reduces nervous tension. 

In previous studies, a single 200-mg dose of AlphaWave has been shown to significantly increase alpha brainwave levels in moderately stressed adults, ENI reported.

“We've now been collecting clinical and use data on AlphaWave for about 10 years and this has supported its consistent growth in both supplements and beverages," said Cal Bewicke, CEO of Ethical Naturals. "Good clinical studies always involve a lot of time and work, but this new, longer-term study is another step forward in the development of AlphaWave and its contribution to stress relief.”