Community Research and Development Information Service - CORDIS

H2020

ProteinPlus Report Summary

Project ID: 726797

Periodic Reporting for period 1 - ProteinPlus (Let's give the world appetite for health)

Reporting period: 2016-09-01 to 2017-12-31

Summary of the context and overall objectives of the project

Disease-related malnutrition affects 33 million Europeans and a burden of 170bn€ for the EU. Oral Nutritional Supplements (ONS) are specially formulated foods designed to meet patients’ nutritional deficiencies during illness. However, large portion sizes and bad taste in ONS induce very low levels of treatment compliance (50%), dramatically limiting effectiveness. Manufacturers face a technological barrier that prevents them from increasing protein density and thus reducing volume.

The aim of the project is to bring to the market a disruptive hyperproteinic ingredient – Protein Plus - for ONS manufacturers, that overcomes this technology gap. The Protein Plus project therefore involves applying our technical know-how to create a disruptive new ingredient for the medical food market - providing the opportunity to create high-value innovation from our technology.

The project has two major aims: developing the Protein Plus ingredient and obtaining scientific proof of its effectiveness via a clinical trial. The project is composed 4 major work packages:
- Finalizing the Protein Plus ingredient in the lab (WP1)
- Creating a generic ONS product containing Protein Plus that can be used during the clinical trial (WP2)
- Validating the Protein Plus production chain at an industrial level (WP3)
- Implementing the clinical trial (WP4).
WPs 5 & 6 are dedicated to project management and ethics management respectively.

Work performed from the beginning of the project to the end of the period covered by the report and main results achieved so far

The project commenced on the 1st September 2016 and significant progress has been made during the first reporting period.

WP1 is largely complete, including the development of the process, machine and finalized formula of the ingredient in the lab. WP2 has made good progress, as we investigated the standard composition of ONS formula and identified external suppliers for the development of the ONS that will be used during the clinical study. We have also made significant progress on the preparation of the clinical study (WP4), including the choice of CRO, investigating hospital and the study protocol. Finally, work on commercial preparation (WP5) has made good progress, as we continue to nurture our relationships with our target client base – ONS manufacturers.

Progress beyond the state of the art and expected potential impact (including the socio-economic impact and the wider societal implications of the project so far)

Work on WP1 has demonstrated that, with the Protein Plus ingredient, we can achieve a palatable protein content that is much higher than current market standards for ONS. This will make it possible to improve the nutritional content of ONS, while providing a more compact product that is easier for a patient to consume.

The expected impact of the project is progressing through continued contact with ONS manufacturers, who demonstrate clear interest in the project results. We have also generated interest from manufacturers in the wider functional food market (sports nutrition, diet…).

Since the beginning of the project, Emulsar has hired 9 additional staff (engineers, technicians, apprentices…) who are largely dedicated to the implementation of the Protein Plus project, and moved to larger premises to prepare for upscaled production. Multiple dissemination activities have been implemented, including both the promotion of the project results and of the SME Instrument.

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