Health E-Insights: What is Cerebelle and how is it used?
Ms. Cascella: Cerebelle is a unique blend of extracts from two potent polyphenol-rich fruit, grape and wild blueberry, clinically proven to prevent age-related cognitive decline in healthy older adults. More precisely, each of these extracts contribute specific polyphenols with neuroprotective properties. Six-month supplementation with Cerebelle (600 mg/day) demonstrated improved episodic memory in healthy senior people. Cerebelle complements a broad variety of consumer productsranging from traditional dietary supplements to functional foods and beverages.
Health E-Insights: How does it work?
Ms. Cascella: Primary cognitive decline is a normal, non-pathological impairment of cognitive functions that develops with age. Data from recent studies show the prevalence of mild cognitive impairment in the population of 70 to 75 years of age to be between 15 to 20%. Existing preclinical studies demonstrate that grape polyphenols, as well as blueberry ones, can cross the brain-blood barrier after oral ingestion. More convincingly, today there is a full spectrum of evidence in the literature, including epidemiological studies, demonstrating the link between polyphenol consumption from different sources including raw fruit, juice or polyphenolic extracts from berries and grape, and cognitive improvement. Based on this literature, a French-Canadian consortium was created, combining leading companies in the extraction of natural polyphenols and academic experts. The consortium joined forces to develop and market innovative natural products to support neurocognitive health. This research program led to the development of Cerebelle, a synergistic and proprietary blend of polyphenols from grape and blueberry, supported by a full range of pre-clinical studies as well as a large-scale human intervention study. The bioavailability of the different components in Cerebelle was studied with consistent results showing that the combination of wild blueberry and grape extracts increased specific flavonoid bioavailability, which explained the unique efficacy of Cerebelle.
Health E-Insights: What have clinical studies shown?
Ms. Cascella: The clinical study recently published in the Journals of Gerontology by researchers from the Institute of Nutrition and Functional Foods (INAF) in Canada and the University of Bordeaux in France showed that six-month supplementation with Cerebelle improved memory in healthy older adults. In a bicentric, double-blind, randomized, placebo-controlled study, 215 healthy subjects from 60 to 70 years of age received for 24 weeks either a placebo or 600 mg/d of Cerebelle. Subjects in both groups performed a series of cognitive tests, designed by CANTAB to assess visuospatial learning, and episodic memory (Paired Associate Learning, PAL), verbal recognition memory (VRM), and working memory (SSP). Supplementation with Cerebelle improved VRM free recall across the entire group. It was further noted that, within the subgroup with advanced cognitive decline at baseline, six-month supplementation with Cerebelle showed improvement of both PAL and VRM. These results infer that Cerebelle improves verbal memory in healthy elderly people. The study also demonstrated that Cerebelle improves episodic memory, or the ability to recall previous events, emotions, and places, in healthy senior people with a lower level of memory performance.
Health E-Insights: How do you see the grape and blueberry polyphenols in your ingredient helping to fight brain aging?
Ms. Cascella: On the one hand, oxidation occurs with the development of cognitive-related defects, and polyphenols have widely been studied for their potent antioxidant capabilities. While we cannot rule out that the decrease of oxidation-related parameters by Cerebelle explain part of the results, preclinical data suggest that the action of Cerebelle is broader than that. Preclinical data have shown that polyphenols from Cerebelle can decrease the production of pro-inflammatory compounds in the brain. Moreover, the published preclinical study demonstrated that these polyphenols stimulate the production of nerve growth factor in the brain with an increase in synaptic plasticity, leading to an improvement of memory. These three different pathways strengthen our understanding of the capability of Cerebelle to protect against the memory decline associated with aging. We look forward to additional studies to further unveil the mechanistic effects correlated with supplementation with Cerebelle. Of course, delivering these benefits relies heavily on the sourcing of the best natural ingredients and the standardization of the product with the tightest specifications. Diana Food has built this expertise over the past 25 years.
Health E-Insights: What are the top two metrics to which Diana Food pays the closest attention?
Ms. Cascella: Science with a dedication to understanding how polyphenols and other natural fruit and vegetable derived health actives help consumers live a healthy life, whatever their age and condition, and our passion for building a natural solutions portfolio that answers consumer needs and exceeds customer requirements.
Health E-Insights: Where will the most significant growth occur in the company in the next few years?
Ms. Cascella: Diana Food sees strong growth across all the market segments it serves, as the need for natural products, trust, and sustainability solutions increase in the industry. More specifically, we see tremendous growth coming from our consumer health category where Diana Food provides natural health solutions that are supported by robust science, like Cerebelle. We also see a growing need for innovative solutions that combine actives for a synergistic action on human health, such as combining probiotics with botanical extracts. Diana Food is pioneering research on the prebiotic role of polyphenols with the creation of an industrial research chair at INAF-Laval University in Canada. Leading experts on probiotics and polyphenols are now starting a five-year research program to better understand gut microbiota modulation and its impact on human health.
Health E-Insights: What is your company’s competitive advantage?
Ms. Cascella: Unquestionably it is trust in the authenticity and quality of our products, and confidence in the support we provide to our customers. Thanks to our team of agronomists, we are able to select the best sources of fruit and vegetables, harvested at the perfect time when their nutritional composition is optimum. This unique sourcing combined with our know-how in extraction processes and our ability to work with leading scientists, enabled us to develop a ground-breaking product like Cerebelle.
Health E-Insights: What do you envision for future development of brain health products?
Ms. Cascella: Cerebelle is absolutely an exciting product and the learnings we gathered during its development lead us to believe there is more to discover about the role of polyphenols in brain health, across different populations, including young adults. In addition, we are investigating the gut-brain axis as part of the INAF-Laval University research program.
Health E-Insights: As Cerebelle is a relatively new ingredient, what are your marketing strategies to garner industry attention?
Ms. Cascella: We are excited to launch a major product introduction for our newly branded, proprietary Cerebelle blended polyphenol, at SupplySide West in November. We will feature a wide-range of scientific literature and information about our recent clinical studies, as well as numerous activities that attendees are invited to experience for themselves.Furthermore, part of the nutrition division of the Symrise group, Diana Food offers consumer well-being solutions for the food and consumer health industry. Well-being has become of foremost importance to consumers all over the world. We are committed to empower them to be active participants of their own wellness by bringing them innovative, natural ingredient solutions which provide health, pleasure, and trust. To do so, we carefully select raw materials, fruit, vegetables, and meat, and apply sustainable agricultural practices and processes. By applying these same principles for the past 25 years, Diana Food has become the natural provider of high value clean label ingredients and standardized nutritional actives. Counting on our strong expertise in agronomy and industrial processes, we guarantee food safety, transparency, and authenticity on all our products.
Sheldon Baker is CEO of the Baker Dillon Group LLC and has created numerous nutraceutical marketing communications and public relations campaigns for many well-known companies and brands. For Health E-Insights interview consideration or brand marketing consulting, contact Sheldon at SBaker@BakerDillon.com.