The new ingredient is a harvested Euglena algae that delivers more than 65 percent 1,3 beta-glucan by weight. As a result, IMMUNUM PRO is whole food ingredient for immune support. Algaeon, Inc. (Indianapolis, IN) will produce IMMUNUM PRO exclusively for Valensa, and Valensa will formulate IMMUNUM PRO as an immune support component in a range of human health formulations. The formulations will also include other proprietary ingredients, targeting condition-specific applications and general well-being. As part of market support for this new ingredient, Valensa will create marketing materials, formulation guidelines and carry out a series of human clinical studies to demonstrate efficacy.
According to Rudi E. Moerck, president and CEO of Valensa, the efficacy and product form of IMMUNUM PRO is what drew the company to market and formulate with this immune support product.
“Immune support is obviously an extremely important human need," Moerck said. “However, many of the ingredients that are currently being marketed have drawbacks – they are heavily processed and mostly less effective than pure 1,3 beta-glucan. IMMUNUM PRO addresses these issues to deliver what people are looking for in immune support, namely minimal processing and high potency."
Beta-glucan is one of nature’s most documented immunomodulators supporting both innate and adaptive immunity. Importantly, it has been shown that beta-glucans efficiently enter the circulatory system and activate immune cells throughout the body. Mixed beta-glucans are mostly derived from natural sources such as yeast, fungi and bacteria, and cereal grains like oat and barley.
There are, however, significant structural variations in the beta-glucan family of compounds from these different sources, which influences their physiological functioning and potency. The 1,3 beta-glucan in IMMUNUM Pro consists exclusively of a linear, unbranched chain of glucose units - the form that is believed to be the most effective immune modulator of this class of beta-glucans. Fungal-, yeast- and grain-based beta-glucans contain less effective 1,3/1,4 and 1,3/1,6 beta-glucan mixtures. IMMUNUM PRO has a beta-glucan structural configuration known as paramylon, derived from Euglena gracilis. The linearity of the paramylon 1,3 beta-glucan molecule and its higher molecular weight contribute to its heightened ability to stimulate the immune system. Valensa plans to conduct a series of clinical studies with IMMUNUM PRO.
IMMUNUM PRO harvesting is conducted via a proprietary closed-reactor technology for growing Euglena algae with a high 1,3 beta content, without the need for intense chemical or physical techniques for purification. This process offers safety, product quality and cost advantages. The commercially available product is more than 65 percent 1,3 beta-glucan by weight, with the remainder being small amounts of 58 naturally occurring minerals, vitamins and amino acids.