For some, it is the most important scientific discovery in human medicine in recent decades: the microbiome in the human gut. Study after study is bringing to light new connections about how microorganisms in the human gut influence physical and psychological well-being. The microbiome thus makes an important contribution to the balance of inflammatory processes, to the tolerance of food components such as gluten, and to cardiovascular and mental health.
This is where Creavis comes in, developing synbiotic preparations from Evonik's own microorganisms that can specifically convert ingredients in the human intestine into bioactive substances. We transport these beneficial microorganisms, isolated in our own screenings, in combination with the ingredients required for their positive effect, to the optimal site of action in the digestive tract in a targeted and undamaged manner. This allows the synergistically acting combinations to produce bioactive health-promoting substances on site, i.e. in the intestine itself, or to initiate certain metabolic processes on site. In this way, they have the optimal effect that we have also been able to demonstrate in human studies.
Energy for the gut
The first Creavis development of such a synbiotic preparation exclusively for B2B customers is already on the market. It modulates the production of butyrate. This short-chain fatty acid is normally produced in the healthy colon during the microbial breakdown of dietary fiber. Butyrate is the most important source of energy for intestinal cells. However, it also has a systemic effect, for example via the gut-brain axis.
Butyrate is scientifically well known for its physiological roles in metabolic and mental health, and in strengthening the intestinal barrier and immune system. If it is lacking, the entire organism becomes more susceptible to disease. However, microbial butyrate production can decrease due to health and nutritional factors. This can be counteracted. Our synbiotics researchers have identified a specific bacterial strain that, in combination with a dipeptide, modulates the microbiota in the intestine in such a way that butyrate production is stimulated. An appropriately pH-controlled capsule coating releases the bacterium and dipeptide undigested at the beginning of the colon, which is a prerequisite for the positive effect on the microbiota.
Next Generation Omega-3
Another Creavis development is dedicated to omega-3 fatty acids. Their health-promoting effect is well known. Omega-3 is converted in the human body into anti-inflammatory messenger substances known as resolvins. However, this conversion is not equally effective in all people. Our synbiotic solution is a combination preparation of omega-3 fatty acids and a special strain of the bacterium Bacillus megaterium, which occurs naturally in the intestine. The special strain is able to convert omega-3 fatty acids to resolvins already in the intestine and thus to compensate for a lack of conversion. Through targeted release in the colon, with the aid of a functional capsule coating developed by Evonik, this complementation takes place in a controlled manner at the site of action. This has been proven to increase the bioavailability and conversion of omega-3 to resolvin.
Gluten without fear
Celiac disease and gluten intolerance are very stressful for those affected. Depending on the region and the severity, between 0.5 and 13 percent of the population are affected, sometimes with painful symptoms and lifelong restrictions. We have identified synergistically acting microorganisms that produce the entire spectrum of enzymes required for complete gluten degradation in the intestine itself. We have already been able to demonstrate this effect in model systems. As with all of our Creavis synbiotic solutions, the market launch now requires that we also prove the effectiveness in human studies.
Hope for millions
As the business incubator of the specialty chemicals group, we at Creavis develop the idea of synbiotic product concepts from the initial idea through scientific evaluation to the finished evidence-based product. To this end, our team in Marl, Essen and Hanau links the Group's biotechnological know-how with the formulation, market and application expertise of the Health Care Business Line. All in order to develop safe, market-ready and scientifically sound synbiotics for our B2B customers under the IN VIVO BIOTICS™ brand, which specifically strengthen the body's own healthy metabolic processes and thus potentially improve the quality of life for millions of people around the world.