EAGAN, MN — February 27, 2012 — The EU is investing 6M Euros in an international research project evaluating the immune health effects of Wellmune WGP® and several other functional food ingredients.
The FibeBiotics project is a consortium of four European universities, five research institutions and several private companies thatwill study the effect of food fibers on the human immune system. Wageningen UR Food & Biobased Research, The Netherlands, is coordinating the 4.5-year project.
Wellmune WGP is gluco polysaccharide that is clinically proven to safely prime key immune cells that help keep the body healthy. Derived from a proprietary strain of yeast, Wellmune WGP mobilizes neutrophils, which are the largest population of immune cells in the body and part of the body’s first line of defense.
“We are pleased that Wellmune WGP is part of this important scientific research project,” said Rich Mueller, Biothera president and chief executive officer. “It will be complementary to our internal research program that is designed to expand understanding of our unique technology and its global immune health benefits.”
According to a FibeBiotics statement: “It is known for a long time that polysaccharides (other than easy digestible starch) and the immune system are connected. The immune response towards invading pathogens like bacteria, fungi and yeast is often initiated by therecognition of the intruder via the sugar chains that are located on the outside of the pathogen. After this recognition the immune system is activated and attempts to remove the pathogen as fast as possible.
“Research indicated that some specific polysaccharides, for example those from the cell wall of yeast or those that are present in various plant products, can activate the immune system starting from the intestine,even when no intruders are present. Various polysaccharides have been shown to activate macrophages, which can ‘digest’ pathogens and unwanted cells. An activated, warned or primed first layer of defence can help to improve the overall resistance of humans.”
Biothera is a U.S. biotechnology company dedicated to improving immune health. It manufactures and markets patented, natural ingredients for functional foods, beverages and nutritional supplements worldwide. Its flagship ingredient, Wellmune WGP, is the culmination of more than $300 million in research with leading university and government institutions. Wellmune WGP is formulated in food, beverage and supplement products in more than 35 countries. It has broad regulatory approval worldwide including GRAS status in the U.S. and novel foods approval in Europe and China. Wellmune is a recipient of an IFT Innovation Award, a 2011 SupplySide West Scientific Excellence Award and a Frost & Sullivan Excellence in Research Award. More information is available at www.wellmune.com.