Life Sciences and Energy

Alimentary Health launches new precision biotic in Ireland

By Business & Finance
20 February 2014
Dr Barry Kiely, CEO, Alimentary Health

Alimentary Health, a leading player in the development and commercialisation of precision probiotics and pharmabiotic technologies for gastrointestinal disorders has today announced the launch of a new precision biotic™ product ‘AlflorexTM’.

‘AlflorexTM’ is based on the science of a patented and well documented probiotic culture Bifidobacterium infantis 35624. First discovered in Cork, this culture has been demonstrated to be safe and effective in several published studies in patients suffering from irritable bowel syndrome (IBS); which is a condition estimated to affect between 10-15% of Irish adults.

Alimentary Health, founded in 1999, is a spin-out company from UCC and a founding member of the Alimentary Pharmabiotic Centre (APC). The APC at UCC has received global recognition as one of the world’s leading institutions in probiotic research.

Alimentary Health has already seen significant commercial success in other markets, as a result of strategic alliances with leading global healthcare players. Alimentary Health licensed the probiotic strain B. infantis 35624 to Procter & Gamble in 2005 who today market B.infantis 35624 under the brand name Align® in the US and Canada.  Align® is now the number one Gastroenterologist-recommended probiotic product in the US.

The company also has a strong technology pipeline of new probiotic cultures in addition to B. infantis 35264.  It has also developed a portfolio containing over 100 patents across multiple territories.

Speaking about the launch of Alflorex®, Minister Sean Sherlock TD said: “The launch of ‘Alflorex’ is an exciting development, not only for Alimentary Health, but also for the wider biopharmaceutical and healthcare sector.  Alimentary Health is an excellent example of an indigenous Irish company that has commercialised world class research from Irish universities and is competing in global markets. Alimentary Health has had a long standing close relationship with the APC, which I launched in June of last year, and has played a key role in commercialising the research undertaken in the Centre.”

Commenting on the launch of Alflorex in Ireland, Professor Eamonn Quigley, one of the early investigators and chief of division of gastroenterology and hepatology, Houston Methodist Hospital and Professor of Medicine, Weill Cornell College of Medicine, Houston, Texas, said: “Conventional management of IBS is often suboptimal often addressing only one of the several symptoms that comprise the syndrome.  In studies in IBS patients, B. infantis 35624 has been shown to improve all of the cardinal symptoms of the condition. This is one of the few probiotic products which has been truly developed on a scientific basis and tested in high quality clinical studies.”