Dilip Ghosh, PhD, FACN Nutriconnect, Sydney, Australia
The health effects of cGP-PRO (a combination of blackcurrant powder and hydrolysed bovine collagen) focuses on supporting cognitive function of the ageing brain and vascular health. Several human studies demonstrated that supplementation with cGP-PRO increases cGP concentration in circulation and supports the health and function of our body and mind by maintaining the homeostasis of the IGF-1 function. Supplementation with cGP-PRO can be beneficial in reversing symptoms of age-related cognitive decline and supporting the management of symptoms in patients with vascular diseases, like stroke, hypertension and dementia, potentially slowing its progress.
The brain is a complex organ that neuroscientists are still attempting to understand. This is unique because of its high metabolism and high turnover of nutrients, and this makes it a high-maintenance organ in terms of optimal nutrient intake. Moreover, the brain is highly prone to oxidative stress owing to high fatty acid content (especially polyunsaturated fatty acids, which contributes to 10 per cent of total dry brain weight), high oxygen consumption and redox signalling (about 20 per cent basal oxygen for ATP production), low antioxidant content with higher neurotransmitter auto-oxidation. Due to the multifactorial nature, the role of nutrition and nutritional products in cognitive neuroscience is complex. In addition, a myriad of nutrient-specific transport systems and physiological mechanisms add more complexities in the nutrient-gut-brain interaction.
As people live longer, dysfunction of the brain is becoming a predominant issue for the healthcare system. Cognitive decline, particularly in elderly people, often derives from the interaction between age-related changes and age-related diseases, and covers a wide spectrum of clinical manifestations, from intact cognition through mild cognitive impairment and dementia.
Age-related changes in cognitive function vary considerably across individuals and lifecycle stages, with some cognitive functions appearing to be more susceptible than others to the effects of ageing. The brain undergoes tremendous age-associated structural and functional changes. Like age-related changes in brain structure and function, age-related changes in cognition are not uniform across all cognitive domains, or across all older individuals. The basic cognitive functions most affected by age are attention and memory. Older adults show significant impairments in attention tasks, particularly on multitasking platforms. General knowledge, vocabulary and verbal ability do not significantly decline throughout the lifecycle.
Vascular health is critical for maintaining normal cognition in humans. Poor cerebral vascular function contributes to age-related cognitive impairment. Vascular degeneration has been reported in the brain regions of Parkinson’s disease and other neurodegenerative cases. The decline of Insulin Growth Factor-1 (IGF-1) with age contributes to vascular degeneration and cognitive impairment associated with neurodegeneration.
Cyclic glycine-proline (cGP)
Cyclic glycine-proline (cGP) is a cyclic form of dipeptide that is found in foods and also in several matrices of foods including various plants, fungi, marine and animal products. Research shows that cGP is endogenous to the human body and has been detected in human plasma, breast milk and brain tissue. Clinical observations show that endogenous cGP increases to promote Insulin Growth Factor-1 (IGF-1) function only when IGF-1 function is insufficient. For example, old people with higher cGP in circulation show better cognitive retention. When the body’s self-made response becomes insufficient people can develop mild cognitive impairment and the decline of cGP is associated with vascular diseases, like hypertension, stroke and dementia. These observations are supported by experimental tests, in which cGP administration improves cognitive function, reduces blood pressure and improves stroke recovery. The research outcome reveals the role of cGP in regulating the function of IGF-1.
Insulin Growth Factor-1 (IGF-1)
As a double-edged sword, IGF-1 is an endogenous growth factor and plays an important role in development, wound healing, metabolism, cognition, and tumour growth. Free and bioavailable IGF-1 is not enzymatically stable and forms a linear tripeptide, Glycine-Proline-Glutamate (GPE) in plasma and brain tissue which further gets metabolized into cGP. Collective data from experimental studies demonstrate that cGP can alter IGF-1 binding to its binding protein and increase the amount of unbound/bioavailable IGF-1 in the system.
Use of cGP-IGF-1 axis in pharmaceuticals
Structural analogues of cGP and cGP-related peptides (such as trofinetide, Noopept) have been used for pharmaceutical developments, and some of them have been approved by the FDA and EMA, as orphan drugs for treating developmental neurological conditions. These outcomes of clinical observations and clinical trials support that cGP is safe and efficacious to use for supporting human health.
Additionally, research over the years has demonstrated the efficacy of cGP in facilitating vascularisation and microcirculation in vascular diseases through normalisation of IGF-1 function. The body’s demand for cGP increases with age, during recovery from stroke injuries and when people suffer from sub-optimal health conditions.
cGP-PRO: A natural alternative of cGP supplementation
The health effects of cGP-PRO (a combination of blackcurrant powder and hydrolysed bovine collagen) focuses on supporting cognitive function of the ageing brain and vascular health. Several human studies demonstrated that supplementation with cGP-PRO increases cGP concentration in circulation and supports the health and function of our body and mind by maintaining the homeostasis of the IGF-1 function. Research into the pharmacology of cGP, clinical observational studies and open label human trials collectively suggest that cGP-supplementation increases cGP levels in the circulation and supports the health and function of the body. Supplementation with cGP-PRO can be beneficial in reversing symptoms of age-related cognitive decline and supporting the management of symptoms in patients with vascular diseases, like stroke, hypertension and dementia, potentially slowing its progress. These studies collectively demonstrated the efficacy of cGP in facilitating vascularisation and microcirculation in vascular diseases through normalisation of IGF-1 function. The health effects of cGP-PRO described here have a focus of supporting cognitive function of ageing brain, vascular brain diseases and during brain development.