Synutra International (Nasdaq: SYUT) President Weiguo Zhang and noted chondroitin testing method expert Jana Hildreth, director of technology and scientific affairs of Synutra Pure, are inviting colleagues to their booth at SupplySide West to advise the industry on the effective ingredient testing methods to separate adulterants and ensure chondroitin purity and quality.
“As the largest supplier of chondroitin it is in our best interest for every consumer experience with chondroitin be one where they realize benefits, which requires pure ingredients,” Zhang said. “While we are gratified that the industry is talking about increased chondroitin testing, we want to make sure the tests being done will identify the range of common adulterants as well as abnormalities that can indicate something new, which is how we identified a recent mystery adulterant as sodium hexametaphosphate earlier this year.”
“We’ve seen industry trade news reports of a supplier increasing the number of tests they do specifically to spot this most recent adulterant our team identified, yet the methods they listed would not separate sodium hexametaphosphate,” said Hildreth. “We want to make absolutely sure that the industry is doing the right tests for assessing the purity and strength of their incoming raw materials, and are happy to personally discuss the pros and cons of the current methods available with colleagues and competitors.”
Because the most commonly used chondroitin assay method, cetylpyridinium chloride (CPC) titration, can be fooled by various known adulterants, Synutra advocates using CPC after cellulose acetate membrane electrophoresis (CAME), a complementary methodology to CPC that has been in the USP monograph for years and was designed to screen out ingredient material impurities and keep the CPC assay true. Most companies in the industry have used only CPC, with few using CAME in their routine screening of incoming raw materials.
Utilizing CAME as a qualitative, raw material screening tool before running quantitative methods such as CPC for assay, or other specific methods such as enzymatic HPLC, is the testing protocol Synutra has learned most effective through extensive research and experience. CAME is an inexpensive, simple, and effective procedure that can serve well in effectively deterring the practice of adulterating chondroitin ingredients with both known and unknown adulterants.
Synutra launched the first branded chondroitin ingredients, ChondroGold and ChondroCal, in 2013 specifically to highlight the need for pure ingredients. ChondroGold materials come in various grade levels of chondroitin assay content to meet diversified customer needs. Choice of source material varieties is also offered in bovine, porcine, avian, and combinations thereof. ChondroGold materials feature not more than 1% electrophoretic impurities, and ultra-low heavy metal breakdown guarantees. All ChondroGold materials meet United States Pharmacopoeia (USP) Dietary Supplement Compendium's documentary standards on Chondroitin Sulfate Sodium.
Synutra Ingredients has developed proprietary processes to extract and produce chondroitin calcium in a low-sodium form from common source materials. This chondroitin calcium product is offered in Synutra Ingredients’ ChondroCal. This low-sodium or sodium-free alternative chondroitin material provides consumers with benefits of long-term supplementation without the harmful impact of unwanted sodium in-take with conventional joint health products.