New Zealand blackcurrant specialist sets sights on China’s healthy ageing market

By Tingmin Koe contact

- Last updated on GMT

cGPMAX Brain Health capsules. ©The cGP Lab Ltd
cGPMAX Brain Health capsules. ©The cGP Lab Ltd

Related tags: Healthy ageing, blackcurrant, Npd

The cGP Lab Ltd, a New Zealand firm specialising in developing dietary supplements containing cyclic glycine-proline (cGP) – a molecule extracted from New Zealand grown blackcurrants – is eyeing China’s healthy ageing market with its products.

The cGP Lab Ltd has taken over from fellow New Zealand company Vitality Wellness which specialises in a range of products containing cGP. Examples include Brain Shield,​ as well as products for women’s health, muscle performance and an omega-3,6,9 product made using blackcurrant seed oil​.

Having taken over the business, the company has now rebranded the products and set in place new strategies.

For instance, it is now focusing on only selling cGPMAX Brain Health capsules – a dietary supplement that claims to support brain function.

It also aims to focus on developing new finished products with different functionalities containing cGP trademarked cGPMAX. The ingredient is also available to B2B customers.

According to the firm, cGP works by encouraging brain cells to make new blood vessels and increase blood circulation.

A study published in Nutrients​ showed that the supplementation of blackcurrant anthocyanins, in which cGP is found in, had led to an increase to cGP levels in the cerebrospinal fluid, suggesting oral availability and effective brain uptake of cGP.

Speaking to NutraIngredients-Asia, ​Jen Chan, global sales director at The cGP Lab Ltd, said she hoped to focus on leveraging the benefits of cGPMAX in the products.

The biggest shareholder of the firm, Chan has been in the travel retail sector before joining the firm since the COVID-19 lockdown began.

Since taking over the business, she said that the company would streamline the product range by utilising cGPMax as the hero ingredient for various health benefits.

“Our new product development plan is to develop a range of up to 10 supplements that specifically address health conditions affecting our consumers who are over the age of 45, including circulation, heart, liver, and joint health. Each product will include our hero ingredient, cGPMAX."

China’s healthy ageing market

The company has set its sights in the wider APAC region, including China’s healthy ageing market.

Chan revealed that the firm would be selling the products into China via cross-border e-commerce (CBEC) in Tmall Global store early next year.

As of July, cGPMAX Brain Health is only sold online in New Zealand. The company will also develop a powder version of the product.

China clinical trial 

The company is currently studying the effects of cGPMAX on patients diagnosed with metabolic syndromes, including obesity, high blood pressure, high cholesterol.

The study hypothesis is that supplementation of cGPMAX could help to reduce the complications associated with metabolic syndromes.

As such, participants diagnosed with metabolic syndrome and peripheral neuropathy – characterised by the loss of feet sensation – and high blood pressure are the targets of the study. 

The study, an open label one, will be conducted in Tianyou Hospital, which is affiliated with the Wuhan University of Science and Technology. 

Changes in the clinical symptoms will be assessed and clinical and biological analysis will be compared pre and post supplementation. 

The cGP molecule has been the subject of attention for Dr. Jian Guan – the associate professor at The University of Auckland who has also joined the company as the chief scientist since March last year – for over 30 years. 

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