October 1, 2005
A monthly digest of research on company ingredients published in peer-reviewed journals
Study Claim: Infants of mothers who supplemented with Martek DHA while breastfeeding had improved psychomotor skills at 2 1/2 years of age.
Published: Jensen CL, et al. Effects of maternal docosahexaenoic acid intake on visual function and neurodevelopment in breastfed term infants. Am J Clin Nutr 2005; 82(1):125-32.
Abstract: Brain and visual development requires exogenous docosahexaenoic acid (DHA; 22:6n-3) intake, but the amount needed is debatable. Because the supplementation of breastfeeding mothers with DHA increases the DHA content of their infants? plasma lipids, researchers hypothesised it might improve brain or visual function.
A total of 227 women received capsules containing either a high-DHA algal oil (200mg DHA/day) or a vegetable oil (no DHA) for four months after delivery; 115 infants aged 4-8 months and 12-30 months participated.
Milk lipid and infant plasma phospholipid DHA contents of the supplemented and control groups were approximately 75 per cent and 35 per cent higher, respectively, at 4 months postpartum. However, neither the neurodevelopmental indexes of the infants at 12 months nor the visual function at 4 or 8 months differed significantly between groups. In contrast, the Bayley Psychomotor Development Index — which assesses both fine and gross motor development — of the supplemented group was higher at 30 months of age.
DHA supplementation of breastfeeding mothers results in higher infant plasma phospholipid DHA during supplementation and a higher Bayley Psychomotor Development Index at 30 months.
Potential applications: Martek DHA is available in prenatal and nursing supplements as well as eggs and nutritional bars.
More info: www.martekbio.com
+1 410 740 0081
Study claim: Astaxanthin can aid protection against hypertension and stroke and aid memory in vascular dementia.
Published: Hussein G, et al. Antihypertensive and neuroprotective effects of astaxanthin in experimental animals. Biol Pharm Bull 2005; Jan; 28(1):47-52.
Abstract: Researchers investigated the antihypertensive effects of astaxanthin (ASX-O), a natural antioxidant carotenoid, in spontaneously hypertensive rats (SHR). Oral administration of ASX-O for 14 days induced a significant reduction in the arterial blood pressure in SHR but not in normotensive Wistar Kyoto strain. The administration of ASX-O (50mg/kg) for five weeks in stroke-prone SHR (SHR-SP) induced a significant reduction in the BP. It also delayed the incidence of stroke in the SHR-SP.
The effects on PGF2 a-induced contractions of rat aorta treated with NG-nitro-l-arginine methyl ester were studied in vitro. ASX-O (1 to 10mM) induced vasorelaxation mediated by nitric oxide. The results suggest that the antihypertensive effect of ASX-O may be due to a nitric oxide-related mechanism. ASX-O also showed significant neuroprotective effects in ischemic mice. Pretreatment of the mice with ASX-O significantly shortened the latency of escaping onto the platform in the Morris water maze learning performance test.
Potential applications: BioAstin astaxanthin is sold in dietary supplements.
More info: www.cyanotech.com
+1 808 326 1353
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