Researchers to Take Probiotic Microencapsulation to Next Level

December 23, 2014

The goal is to create smaller particle sizes that do not require a capsule carrier.

Denmark-based probiotic ingredient supplier Bifodan A/S is working with the University of Copenhagen and the Danish Technical Institute to develop advanced technology for microencapsulating probiotic bacteria. Unlike existing probiotic encapsulation technologies, which achieve larger particle sizes or require a capsule to work, Bifodan says it is looking to create smaller particle sizes that do not require a capsule carrier.

“Today, the vast majority of probiotic protection technologies available are applied to either a capsule or a larger (1–2 mm) particle size,” says Susanne Andersen Baekgaard, marketing director for Bifodan. “This technology works fine when it comes to adults swallowing a capsule or taking a powder that can be crunchy and not necessarily good tasting,” but new technology is needed for those who do not want to take capsules, such as children or the elderly, or those who want better-tasting powders, she says.

The challenge will be to ensure the new microencapsulation barrier layer can adhere to a very small particle, without harming the live probiotic bacteria within, she says. If Bifodan and its partners can achieve the smaller particle size, it will “significantly expand the options for new and more convenient dosage forms for all users,” Baekgaard adds.

Following R&D, the next step will be to make this microencapsulation technology commercial-scale, which Baekgaard describes as a “major undertaking.”

The new joint venture is endorsed and co-funded by Innovation Fund Denmark.

 

Jennifer Grebow
Editor-in-Chief
Nutritional Outlook magazine jennifer.grebow@ubm.com

 

Photo © iStockphoto.com/David Marchal