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This startup has just made the world’s first edible vegan collagen. That’s how they did it

This week, the biodesign startup Geltor announced the summer launch of the world’s first edible vegan collagen under the PrimaColl brand in the food and nutrition sector. Made by microbial fermentation with a range of “designer” functional proteins, Geltor’s development is the first true collagen to be made without cruelly produced animal ingredients.

Geltor, founded by Alex Lorestani, Ph.D. and Nick Ouzounov, Ph.D., makes high performing consumer proteins that are completely animal and GMO free. The vegan collagen “provides greater potency in less volume and does not contain secondary components common to animal collagens that can compromise solubility and pose formulation challenges,” the company said Food navigator. The first development from Geltor is an exact replica of type 21 collagen, which is known for its ability to induce increased collagen production in cells. “From the 28 different types of collagen, we selected type 21 because of its multiplier effect in signaling the cells to produce additional collagen. Type 21 is not only exceptional in this regard, it is extremely rare in nature, making up only a tiny percentage – less than 1 percent – of all collagen found in the body, ”said Lorestani.

What is vegan collagen?

Unlike animal collagen, which is cruelly extracted from animal bones, skin, and cartilage, Geltor’s Type 21 collagen starts off with a range of microbes that naturally produce proteins. A DNA sequence is then inserted that programs the microbes to produce the collagen protein.

While products labeled as vegan collagen are easily available in the market today in nutritional supplements and beauty products, they do not provide a source of real collagen. Instead, the vegan collagen currently available – commonly known as collagen builders or boosters – provides the body with nutrients that are known to increase the production of collagen in the body.

With a third-party clinical trial on PrimaColl ongoing, Geltor’s Vice President of Business Development notes the startup’s customers’ interest in adding the vegan collagen to a variety of products from baked goods to gums.

Photo credit: Audrey Fretz

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