February 27, 2012
RHINEBECK, N.Y.The U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) issued a patent (no RE42645E) to Albert B. Crum, M.D., Ph.D., for a method describing the physiological synthesis of glutathione, a tripeptide that helps regulate the immune system . The patent, "Nutritional or Therapeutic Compositions and Methods to Increase Bodily Glutathione Levels" is the basis of the dietary supplement Immune Formulation 200® from the ProImmune Co. LLC.
The patent describes glutathione precursors so the "pleiotropic paradox" can function optimally, thereby allowing the antioxidant to be replenished within the cell. As Dr. Crum, chairman of the company, explained, glutathione is made up of three amino acids; one of these, L-cysteine, is the rate-limiting amino acid for glutathione synthesis. While L-cysteine is highly oxidizable and reactive, the pleiotropic paradox provides a delivery system for the unstable L-cysteine.
The pleiotropic paradox uses the amino acid L-cystine, the oxidized form of L-cysteine, as an L-cysteine carrier. The two molecules together create a disulfide bond, providing a safe carriage to get to the cell membrane.
Glutathione is synthesized in every cell of the body, and it is manufactured only intracellularly (inside of cells); a glutathione molecule itself cannot enter or re-enter the cell. Therefore, the proper precursors are required by the body in order for its cells to synthesize glutathione. Recent studies have shown a direct causal link between low glutathione, impaired defenses and cellular susceptibility in model systems.
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