Filiale de valorisation - Université Grenoble Alpes

Natural detox food supplements

Cereal aleurone fractions as food supplements to protect from the adverse effects of chemicals contaminated food intakes


Avantages concurrentiels

  • Scientifically evidenced and natural solution to prevent cellular damages induced by pollutants (eg: pesticides, heavy metals) ingested by food consumption
  • Various active doses and compositions aleurone fractions as food supplements (nutraceuticals or functionnal foods)

Opportunités de marché

Food contamination is a world-wide problem as most of chemical pollutants are persistent and travel long-distance from their production sites. Although the governments agreed to take action to decrease and ban the use of twelve priority substances under the Stockholm Convention (2004), POPs are still a threat to the wildlife and human health. The French Agency for Food, Environmental and Occupational Health & Safety (ANSES) estimates that 20 to 28% of the French population exceed the tolerable daily intake in PCBs and some other POPs (except dioxins) due to contaminated food. Around the world, people whose diet mostly relies on fishery products are at particular risk of POPs exposure.

Stade de développement

Whole or partial fractions  of the aleurone layer of cereal isolated

Results of the essays on POPs- and heavy metal-contaminated rats : aleurone fractions helped hepatic and cerebral cells recover form alterations


Partenariat recherché

UGA is looking for a private partner willing to whether acquire a license of the technology or develop the potentialities of aleurone fractions active detox supplements through research collaboration

Propriété intellectuelle

The results and application are patent pending (WO2016/034828 A1; priority date: 05/09/2014)

Chercheur / Laboratoire

Christine Demeilliers / TIMC


Past and present human activities have led to the production or use of chemical and mineral compounds that are now persistent in the environment, accumulate in the ecosystems and contaminate our food.

Among them, Persistent Organic Pollutants (POPs) such as pesticides (e.g. DDT), chemical additives (e.g. polychlorinated biphenyls or PCBs), or unintentionally produced chemicals resulting from industrial processes (e.g. dioxins) are well-known for their negative effects on the environment, wildlife and human health: long-term exposure to low-level of POPs can lead to increased cancer risk, reproductive disorders, neurobehavioural impairment, increased birth defects among other effects. Heavy metals (arsenic, lead, mercury, cadmium) contamination is also a concern: chronic exposure to these elements induces multiple organ damages and cancers, even at lower levels of exposure. Although the production of these substances is now banned, they remain a concern as they still enter the food chain and negatively impact our health.

Researchers at the University of Grenoble-Alpes (UGA) have discovered that specific cereal seed extracts can protect rats against the deleterious effects of a long-term exposition to POPs or heavy metals. Such extracts could advantageously constitute or be part of food supplements to protect from contaminated food long-term exposure induced damages.


Researchers at the University of Grenoble-Alpes (UGA) isolated fractions of the aleurone layer of cereal seeds and demonstrated they helped hepatic and cerebral cells recover from alterations caused by POPs or heavy metals in contaminated rats. The aleurone layer is the outermost layer of the endosperm, and an important storage organ of different macro- and micronutrients in the plant. It is often removed from grains during the milling process and discarded, except from whole grain products like brans. Aleurone intakes, provided as food supplements, were shown to reduce the physiological and cellular damages caused by a chronic ingestion of PCBs whether these alterations resulted from an oxidative mechanism or not and prevented the hepatic and cerebral toxicity of chronic exposures to PCBs. Aleurone fractions from various cereals (wheat, rye, oats, rice, maize and barley) could therefore be used as food supplements to protect from the adverse effects of chemicals (POPs, heavy metals) contaminated food intakes.




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