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Hydrocolloids as functional food ingredients for gut health

Objective

The overall aim of the project is to realize a commercial opportunity to produce low molecular weight polysaccharides (LMWP) from alginate- and agar-bearing seaweeds for applications in food & health, and wellness products by a group of SMEs. The aim will be addressed by an integrated workplan comprising 1 management activity 5 interlinked RTD workpackages, and a dissemination and exploitation activity. In the RTD programme, Cybercolloids (CC) will produce and characterize 8 novel, LMWPs from alginate and agar raw materials provided by 2 SMEs - ROKO (RO) and Hebridean Seaweed (HS). The LMWPs will be screened using batch culture fermentations with human faecal bacteria, for prebiotic activity (i.e. ability to modulate beneficially the gut microflora) by University of Reading (UREAD). The 2 most effective agar and alginate LMWPs will be selected and bulk produced by CC for validation of prebiotic activity in a feeding trial in human volunteers (University of Ulster)). The end points to be assessed will be stimulation of beneficial bacteria (bifidogenic effects), increased short chain fatty acid production, beneficial effects on stool formation, and improvements in gut barrier function (assessed by an in vitro method). Additionally, benefits of the LMWPs towards plasma lipid profiles and blood glucose levels will be assessed. Alongside the human study, a detailed investigation of the effects of the selected LMWPs in an in vitro model of the human colon will be conducted by UREAD to provide supporting evidence for beneficial effects on bacterial types and activities in the colon. RO and HS in conjunction with CC will implement LMWP technology transfer and scale-up to facilitate production at an industrial scale. Subsequently, another SME Marigot Ltd, will provide a route to market and in conjunction with RO, HS and CC will exploit, with respect to the health and wellness sector, the relevant knowledge provided on the efficacy of novel LMWPs from alginate and agar.

Field of science

  • /natural sciences/biological sciences/biochemistry/biomolecules/lipids
  • /social sciences/economics and business/business and management/commerce
  • /natural sciences/biological sciences/biochemistry/biomolecules/carbohydrates
  • /engineering and technology/industrial biotechnology/bioprocessing technologies/fermentation

Call for proposal

FP7-SME-2007-1
See other projects for this call

Funding Scheme

BSG-SME - Research for SMEs

Coordinator

THE UNIVERSITY OF READING
Address
Whiteknights Campus Whiteknights House
RG6 6AH Reading
United Kingdom
Activity type
Higher or Secondary Education Establishments
EU contribution
€ 64 462
Administrative Contact
Adam Bell (Mr.)

Participants (5)

Marigot Ltd
Ireland
EU contribution
€ 328 323
Address
Strand Farm Currabinny
000 Carrigaline
Activity type
Private for-profit entities (excluding Higher or Secondary Education Establishments)
Administrative Contact
David O' Leary (Mr.)
Industrias Roko S.A.
Spain
EU contribution
€ 307 019
Address
Rua Os Regos 27
15173 Oleiros
Activity type
Private for-profit entities (excluding Higher or Secondary Education Establishments)
Administrative Contact
Pedro Sanchez (Mr.)
HEBRIDEAN SEAWEED COMPANY LIMITED
United Kingdom
EU contribution
€ 236 771
Address
Arnish Point Industrial Estate 1.3
HS2 9JY Stornoway
Activity type
Private for-profit entities (excluding Higher or Secondary Education Establishments)
Administrative Contact
Martin Macleod (Mr.)
CYBERCOLLOIDS LIMITED
Ireland
Address
Strandhaven
CORK Carrigaline
Activity type
Private for-profit entities (excluding Higher or Secondary Education Establishments)
Administrative Contact
Ross Campbell (Mr.)
UNIVERSITY OF ULSTER
United Kingdom
Address
Cromore Road
BT52 1SA Coleraine
Activity type
Higher or Secondary Education Establishments
Administrative Contact
Chris Gill (Dr.)