AI meets sports nutrition: BASF-Nuritas collaboration yields plant-based peptide ingredient to modulate inflammation

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06 Nov 2018 --- BASF has launched a sports nutrition ingredient containing a unique set of plant-based peptides identified using artificial intelligence (AI), for regulating inflammation. Coined PeptAIde, the ingredient was developed as part of a collaboration between BASF and biotech company Nuritas to discover new bioactive peptides to meet evolving consumer needs. Peptides are biologically occurring short chains of amino acids, with some acting as potent signaling molecules in the body.

With industrial-scale production in Germany, PeptAIde is now available in the US, while commercialization is set to follow in Asia Pacific and Europe by 2019. BASF is also currently performing regulatory clearance to allow access to other key markets.

Click to EnlargeThe collaboration between the two companies was announced in January 2017. Under the agreement, Nuritas used AI to identify PeptAIde’s new generation of peptides unlocked from rice protein. BASF has reportedly been granted an exclusive license to commercialize these peptides.

Inflammation is a key concern of active people as it may restrain their ability to continue with physical activity. Initiated by feelings of discomfort, inflammation is regulated by the secretion of a complex network of cytokines, which contributes to a fundamental response to injury and regulates recovery in the body.

BASF research indicates that consumption of PeptAIde affects cytokine release and has immune-modulating properties in consumers, potentially supporting physiological benefits after exercise. PeptAIde is vegan and does not use allergen materials. It also delivers a natural taste profile for flexible use in various sports nutrition formats.

“Exercise-induced muscle damage stimulates important inflammationmarkers including cytokines interleukin (IL)-6 and IL-10, and C-reactive protein (CRP). IL-6 increases rapidly during exercise whereas CRP responds much slower. Although the precise biological action of musclederived cytokines is still uncertain, IL-6 released from contracting muscle is important in regeneration,” Dietrich Rein, Scientific Marketing at BASF Human Nutrition, tells NutritionInsight.
 
“With PeptAIde we introduce a unique plant-based protein hydrolysate containing a set of peptides that specifically help modulate inflammation. To verify the biological significance, we performed in silico and cell culture tests. Both systems indicated promising effects in modulating inflammation markers relevant to regeneration after physical exercise,” he adds.
 
PeptAIde was also assessed in a 24-hour kinetic study in healthy volunteers. The results showed that PeptAIde was “well accepted” by the volunteers, the company reports. A single dose of 20g PeptAIde was found to transiently affect selected immune and inflammation markers assessed in blood plasma. These initial results indicate beneficial effects towards support of muscle stress response.

“Our research has shown that consumers today are seeking innovative, plant-based solutions to help them better manage sports-related inflammation,” says Tina Low, Vice President, Business Management BASF Human Nutrition. “PeptAIde’s unique properties will resonate very well with active consumers and enable our customers to take sports nutrition to the next level.”

PeptAIde will be presented at SupplySide West in Las Vegas this week.

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