Alimentary Health

If you’ve noticed that your friends or colleagues seem pretty chilled out lately, perhaps it’s because they’ve been sampling Zenflore®, a ground-breaking new product recently launched by Alimentary Health.

Seroba’s portfolio company, Alimentary Health, based in Cork in Ireland is a global pioneer in the discovery, development and commercialisation of proprietary microbiome-based and pharmabiotic treatments.

The human gut is teeming with many different species of bacteria. These bacteria have co-evolved with the human immune system over millions of years. Just like us humans, bacterial cultures are unique. However, some are more specialised than others. The benefits of bacterial cultures depend on the type (or strain) of bacteria present.

Zen Man 30 40 Calm

One of Alimentary Health’s core skills is matching different strains of these bacteria to target specific benefits that those strains provide within the human body. They call this PrecisionBiotics. For instance, the Alimentary Health product Alflorex®, with the 35624® culture, part of the Bifidobacterium longum family, provides a benefit for people who suffer from Irritable Bowel Syndrome and has been voted the number one gastrointestinal product in the Irish Pharmacy Awards two years in a row. The product is also sold under license in North America by Proctor & Gamble under the Align® brand and is the #1 Gastroenterologist-recommended probiotic in the US & Canada.

Alflorex Zenflore V2

Zenflore® with the special 1714 Serenitas culture is Alimentary Health’s latest PrecisionBiotic. It was discovered in partnership with scientists from APC Microbiome-Ireland, one of the world’s leading centres of research in the gut microbiome. Zenflore® takes advantage of the gut-brain axis to provide stress-reducing benefits.

The Gut-Brain Axis

A key link between the gut and the brain is the vagus nerve. After the spinal cord, it's the biggest nerve in the body and it makes it possible for your brain and your gut to talk to each other. The gut nervous system is so active and important that it is sometimes called the second brain. Scientists call this connection 'the gut-brain axis'. It's a two-way dialogue between the two organs.

In fact 80-90% of nerve fibres in the vagus nerve are going from the gut to the brain.

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What role can gut bacteria play in the brain?

Your gut can produce more than 90% of the serotonin found in your body. This key brain chemical can affect moods and feelings of happiness and pleasure.

The 1714-Serenitas culture in Zenflore®; has been shown in clinical studies to activate your stress coping centres and reduce levels of your stress hormones. It acts by becoming part of the gut microbiota that are involved in the gut-brain axis.

Watch the short video on the right (1.41 mins) to learn more.

Alimentary Health

Seroba's portfolio company 'Alimentary Health' is recognised around the world as being at the cutting edge of discovery and application in an exciting and growing field of science. Their mission is to develop clinically-supported microbiome-based healthcare and nutritional products that health professionals can believe in.

From its base in Cork and in collaboration with experts worldwide, the team at Alimentary Health are steadily unlocking the promise of the human microbiome and Seroba is proud to continue to support them in that endeavour.

Read more about Alimentary Health and its unique approach to developing innovative products like Zenflore® and Alflorex® here.

Book Recommendation - A Little Light Reading.

If you are interested in reading more about the gut-brain axis and the role that microbiome bacteria in your gut are playing in your life, we recommend this book which is written by American science author Scott C. Anderson and Irish experts John F. Cryan and Ted Dinan.

John Cryan is chair of Anatomy and Neuroscience and Ted Dinan is head of the Department of Psychiatry, both at University College Cork, Ireland (UCC). Together they are the principal investigators at UCC’s APC Microbiome- Ireland, where they manage a team of young, bright investigators who have come from all over the world to join them in this ground-breaking research.

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Book Reviews:

Reviews for 'The Psychobiotic Revolution':

“Although decidedly aimed at the lay reader, the tone throughout is very humorous; I found myself swiftly turning pages, excitedly anticipating the next witty joke. Overall, this is a great book that encourages you to 'take charge of your gut to optimize your mind and your mood'. This is a book that you would reluctantly lend to friends, in the fear that they might not return it.” –Lancet

"The hope is that it may one day be possible to diagnose some brain diseases and mental health problems by analysing gut bacteria, and to treat them – or at least augment the effects of drug treatments – with specific bacteria. Cryan and his colleague Ted Dinan call these mood-altering germs “psychobiotics”, and have co-written a book with the American science writer Scott C Anderson called The Psychobiotic Revolution." —The Guardian

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