PL Thomas & Company (PLT) of Morristown, NJ and Natto Pharma, Norway today announced new findings for the dietary supplement MenaQ7 with significant potential benefits for bone health in postmenopausal women. Vitamin K2 supplementation was shown completely preserve hip bone strength during the 3-year intervention period, whereas in the placebo group bone strength decreased significantly in the study published in the journal Osteoporosis International.
In the study, scientists at VitaK and the Cardiovascular Research Institute (CARIM), both at Maastricht University, The Netherlands, tested whether high vitamin K2 intake promoted bone mineral density and bone strength. The double-blind, placebo controlled design followed 325 apparently healthy, non-osteoporotic women for three years and tested bone mineral content, femoral neck width (the most common location for fracture) and bone mineral density at the beginning and at the end of each year.
Results showed that supplemental vitamin K2 improved bone mineral content and femoral neck width, but not bone mineral density. The researchers concluded that vitamin K2 intake may contribute to preventing postmenopausal bone loss.
"These findings are quite exciting," said lead author Leon J. Schurgers, Ph.D. "Research has shown many indications that vitamin K contributes to the maintenance of bone strength. Besides various population-based studies and a number of clinical intervention trials investigating the effects of increased vitamin K intake, it has also been reported that subjects receiving vitamin K antagonists (oral anticoagulant therapy) have lower bone mineral density and increased fracture risk. Vitamin K2 has significant potential to benefit bone health."
This study was conducted using menatetrenone, synthetic vitamin K2 as MK-4. According to the authors, It should be realized, however, that MK-4 has a very short biological half-life time (1–2 h), which required that it was given three times daily in a dose of 15 mg per helping. Even at this regimen its short half-life will result in fluctuating K2 serum levels, which may explain the requirement of a high dose. At this time no data are available on the efficacy of MK-4 at lower doses, for instance in the range between 100–500 micrograms per day. A possible alternative to MK-4 might be using natural menaquinone-7 (MK-7), the K2 vitamin most abundantly found in the Japanese food natto (fermented soy beans). MK-7 has probably a comparable effect as MK-4, but it has a halflife in the circulation of 3 days, resulting in more constant plasma levels and accumulation in the blood and various tissues. Therefore, MK-7 is the most logical choice for use as a low-dose food supplement, because even at low intake relatively high blood and tissue levels can be obtained.
Natural Vitamin K2 as menaquinone-7 (Mk-7) has been shown to be the most absorbed, have the longest plasma half-life time and greatest bioactivity throughout the whole body of any form of vitamin K. As a result, and based upon population studies of vitamin K intake, it is believed that just 45 mcg of menaquinone-7 (MK-7) daily will provide optimal vitamin K status.
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PLT offers the Natural Vitamin K2 as menaquinone-7 (Mk-7) under the trade name MenaQ7™ in alliance with Natto Pharma, Norway. www.plthomas.com/menaq7.htm (click here)
MenaQ7 provides Natural Vitamin K2 as an extract of natto, a fermented soy food from Japan. Natto is particularly rich in the highly bio-available form of vitamin K2 called menaquinone-7 (MK-7). Natural Vitamin K2 also may provide significant benefit to skeletal and cardiovascular health due to its roles in calcium utilization via the promotion of vitamin K-dependant proteins.
About PL Thomas
PL Thomas, a New Jersey-based ingredient supplier, offers fifty years of innovation in securing reliable, high quality raw materials for the food/functional food and nutrition industries. PLT is a one-stop resource for application solutions, current industry information and technical service, and specializes in water-soluble gums and clinically-supported botanical extracts.
About Natto Pharma
NattoPharma, Norway is the exclusive international supplier of MenaQ7 Natural Vitamin K2 (Mk-7) NattoPharma has entered into a multi-year Research and Development program to substantiate and discover the health benefits of Natural Vitamin K2 for applications in the exciting marketplace for functional food and health food supplements.
For more information, contact Eric Anderson at 973-984-0900, x215 or email [email protected].