Algalif, Icelandic Producer of Pure, High-Grade, Natural Astaxanthin from Microalgae https://algalif.is/ Algalif hf is a leading supplier of high-grade natural astaxanthin from microalgae, produced at its state-of-the-art facility in Iceland. Fri, 07 Jun 2024 11:41:02 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=6.2.5 https://algalif.is/wp-content/uploads/2021/05/Logo-Algaif-25032021-100x100.png Algalif, Icelandic Producer of Pure, High-Grade, Natural Astaxanthin from Microalgae https://algalif.is/ 32 32 Astaxanthin for muscle recovery  https://algalif.is/astaxanthin-for-muscle-recovery/ Tue, 04 Jun 2024 10:14:37 +0000 https://algalif.is/?p=3289 Intense physical activity resulting from heavy exercise leads to increased oxidative stress, inflammation, and muscle damage. Astaxanthin’s unique antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties suggest that it may support the body’s recovery...

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Intense physical activity resulting from heavy exercise leads to increased oxidative stress, inflammation, and muscle damage. Astaxanthin’s unique antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties suggest that it may support the body’s recovery processes after intense exercise. 

  • Oxidative stress: Strenuous physical exercise can lead to an overproduction of reactive oxygen species (ROS), leading to oxidative stress. ROS can damage cellular structures and contribute to inflammation, fatigue, and reduced physical performance. Astaxanthin is a powerful antioxidant, which can turn off singlet oxygen (a specific ROS). In addition, in the context of inflammation, astaxanthin has been shown to suppress cytokines and inflammatory mediators, which are elevated after exercise. 
  • Muscle damage: Strenuous exercise can lead to muscle damage, leading to delayed onset muscle soreness (DOMS). Studies have shown that astaxanthin supplementation improved muscle recovery, reduced pain, and increased strength in subjects with DOMS. The anti-inflammatory properties of astaxanthin could play a role in this context, inflammation being one of the mechanisms underlying DOMS. 
  • Endurance and Fatigue: The effects of astaxanthin are not limited to post-exercise recovery. It was also examined for its potential role during the exercise. Some studies have shown that astaxanthin supplementation increased the time to exhaustion in mice, suggesting a potential role in improving endurance and reducing fatigue. The proposed mechanism is that astaxanthin improves lipid metabolism during exercise by improving the body’s use of fatty acids, sparing muscle glycogen and thus delaying fatigue. 
  • Mitochondrial Protection: Mitochondria, the cell’s powerhouses, are essential for sustained physical performance. Due to their role in energy production, they can also be an important source of ROS during exercise. Astaxanthin can localize in the mitochondrial membrane, providing protection against oxidative damage and potentially improving the efficiency of energy production. 
  • Immune response: Intense training without adequate recovery can weaken the immune system, increasing susceptibility to infections. By modulating inflammation and supporting antioxidant defences, astaxanthin may also help to maintain a robust immune response in athletes. 

In conclusion, astaxanthin’s powerful antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties hold promise for those who engage in intense exercise. Whether it’s speeding up muscle recovery, improving endurance, protecting mitochondria, or supporting the immune system, astaxanthin has a full range of benefits for athletes and fitness enthusiasts alike. While preliminary research results are promising, larger human trials are essential to establish an optimal dosage and provide further evidence of these benefits. 

The benefits of astaxanthin for humans will be explored in future blogs – keep up to date by following us at www.algalif.com.

Learn more by going to the Algalif Knowledge Center. 

An Algalif Blog by Silja Dögg Gunnarsdóttir, Key Account Manager – Europe.

silja@algalif.com

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Astalíf™ is now certified Vegan® https://algalif.is/astalif-is-now-certified-vegan/ Thu, 18 Apr 2024 10:42:29 +0000 https://algalif.is/?p=3276 The Astalíf™ microalgae astaxanthin biomass and all Astalíf™ astaxanthin oleoresins products are now certified Vegan® by the Vegan Society. The certificate can be found here. All Algalif´s astaxanthin products are...

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The Astalíf™ microalgae astaxanthin biomass and all Astalíf™ astaxanthin oleoresins products are now certified Vegan® by the Vegan Society. The certificate can be found here.

All Algalif´s astaxanthin products are derived from the Haematococcus Pluvialis microalgae, which makes them all vegan, but this certification ensures that all production processes are within the framework of The Vegan Society for a Vegan® certification.

 

The Vegan Society is the oldest vegan organization in the world. The Vegan® trademark is an internationally recognized product certification, established in 1990 by the Vegan Society. There are about 65.000 vegan products from about 30.000 companies certified by the Vegan Society around the world.

Astalíf™ is a brand name by Algalíf Iceland for astaxanthin products from microalgae. Algalif is an industry leader in the production of high-quality sustainable natural astaxanthin from microalgae. The company is the biggest producer of natural astaxanthin in Europe and one of the biggest in the world.

All astaxanthin products from Algalíf Iceland are also Carbon Neutral, Non-GMO, Halal, and Kosher certified. All Algalif certifications can be found here. Algalif Iceland and its production processes are regularly inspected by local authorities as well as the European Food Safety Authority and USA Food and Drug Administration.

All Algalif certifications can be found here.

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Pictures https://algalif.is/pictures/ Tue, 16 Apr 2024 14:37:12 +0000 https://algalif.is/?p=3239 The post Pictures appeared first on Algalif, Icelandic Producer of Pure, High-Grade, Natural Astaxanthin from Microalgae.

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Algalif awarded the best astaxanthin producer for four consecutive years. https://algalif.is/algalif-awarded-the-best-astaxanthin-producer-for-four-consecutive-years/ Fri, 29 Mar 2024 06:24:45 +0000 https://algalif.is/?p=3186 Algalif has been awarded the Global Health and Pharma Biotechnology Awards 2024 as the Best Natural Astaxanthin Products Supplier. Algalif got the same award in 2021, 2022 and 2023. This...

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Algalif has been awarded the Global Health and Pharma Biotechnology Awards 2024 as the Best Natural Astaxanthin Products Supplier. Algalif got the same award in 2021, 2022 and 2023.

This is the ninth time the UK-based Global Health & Pharma magazine has given out the international Biotechnology Awards. The magazine is a part of AI Global Media publishing house.  Please go here to read the magazine.

“We are extremely honored by receiving these esteemed awards for the fourth time,” says Svavar Halldorsson, Algalif´s Head of Sales and Marketing. “But we need to be mindful that the real honor belongs to our dedicated teams in science, production and sales. Without their hard work, we would not be receiving any awards of any kind.”

Algalif is Europes’s biggest producer of sustainable natural astaxanthin. Algalif was the first and only Icelandic Company to be awarded the GHP Pharma Biotechnology Awards in 2022 and therefore also the first Icelandic company to win it four times.

Further information:

Further information about Global Health and Pharma and AI Global Media:

www.ghp-news.com

GHP Q2 2024 (ghp-news.com)

Further information about Algalif:

www.algalif.com

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The Killer in the Air – Free radicals https://algalif.is/the-killer-in-the-air/ Fri, 15 Mar 2024 09:42:46 +0000 https://algalif.is/?p=3154 When a car rusts, an apple rots, or skin wrinkles, it is always due to “free radicals”. Free radicals are unstable oxygen molecules that attack the body’s 100 trillion cells...

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When a car rusts, an apple rots, or skin wrinkles, it is always due to “free radicals”. Free radicals are unstable oxygen molecules that attack the body’s 100 trillion cells every day, triggering a destructive chain reaction that can manifest itself in a wide variety of diseases. However, we can protect ourselves from this with certain radical scavengers called “antioxidants”. One such radical scavenger, Astaxanthin, a highly potent carotenoid, is one of the strongest antioxidants. This substance can protect the body´s cells from the attacks of free radicals.

Natural astaxanthin is the strongest antioxidant

You cannot see them, cannot hear them, cannot smell them, and cannot feel them. But they are there! The Killer in the Air. Their name: “Free radicals”. This is simply oxygen molecules.

Oxygen is vital to us humans. But how can a vital element be capable of such destruction? On one hand, oxygen sustains, promotes, and fuels life – on the other hand, it causes stress and damage to our proteins and even DNA, impairing our health and well-being in multiple ways. The reason: Not all oxygen molecules are made equal.

Negative influence of oxygen molecules

The majority of respirated oxygen is stable and indispensable for life. But there are also unstable oxygen molecules, including the free radicals. Radical and non-radical oxygen molecules differ in their molecular structure. Radical oxygen species have an unpaired – unstable – electron, and this excess of energy can only be stabilized by stealing electrons from other nearby molecules, such as our proteins or DNA. This is how free radicals can quickly develop into killer substances. The radical oxygen molecules can influence our organism very negatively.

The apple and the lemon juice

So free radicals react chemically with important parts of our body and oxidize them— cause them to “rust”, so to speak. Visible signs of this oxidative stress include, for example, age-related pigmentation marks (age spots), wrinkles, and grey hair.

There are certain natural substances, however, which calm the overenergetic free radicals. These substances are called “antioxidants”. You can easily test the power of antioxidants yourself: Cut an apple in two, coat the cut surface of one half with lemon juice, and wait. You will see that the untreated half will quickly become brown. The reason for this is the attack by oxygen—the attack of free radicals. You are witnessing the effects of oxidative stress on an apple. The half coated with lemon juice will not become brown so quickly, because it is protected by the power of the antioxidants; lemon juice contains vitamin C, another powerful antioxidant.

Astaxanthin – the super radical catcher

The antioxidants, or “radical catchers”, have the unique ability to stabilize the radical oxygen molecule by donating electrons, without becoming unstable themselves. This neutralizes the radical without damaging neighbouring molecules or cells, and stops the destructive chain reaction, as the antioxidant remains undisturbed from its electron loss. Thus, antioxidants help to ensure a balance within our bodies.
The antioxidants’ “special forces” is Astaxanthin. This carotenoid from the green algae Haematococcus pluvialis is renowned worldwide as the strongest natural antioxidant at all. As radical catcher, it is 6000 times stronger than vitamin C, 800 times stronger than coenzyme Q10, and 550 times stronger as vitamin E. In addition to this superpower, Astaxanthin has a decisive advantage over other antioxidants: it is active in both the hydrosoluble and liposoluble milieu and can therefore protect the whole cell from external influences. Its molecular structure is perfectly suited to strengthen the cell surface and protect it from oxidative damage.

Beneficial for skin protection

In dermatologic research, Astaxanthin is considered a great success. Scientific studies have shown that pure, naturally extracted Astaxanthin can, among other effects, slow down the oxidative aging of the skin by free radicals, promote regenerative processes of the collagen tissue, and protect from UV radiation, irritations, and sunburn.

This mighty antioxidant not only protects the skin— Astaxanthin as a hydrosoluble and liposoluble antioxidant protects all 100 trillion cells in our body.

The benefits of astaxanthin for humans will be explored in future blogs – keep up to date by following us at www.algalif.com.

Learn more by going to the Algalif Knowledge Center. 

An Algalif Blog by Silja Dögg Gunnarsdóttir, Key Account Manager – Europe.

silja@algalif.com

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Why does environmental impact play a role for microalgae-derived astaxanthin production? https://algalif.is/why-does-environmental-impact-play-a-role-for-microalgae-derived-astaxanthin-production/ Fri, 01 Mar 2024 13:00:26 +0000 https://algalif.is/?p=3165 Although microalgae certainly represent a novel, promising source of several bioactive compounds such as astaxanthin, fucoxanthin, EPA/DHA, and phycocyanin, less attention has been paid to the difference between potential cultivation...

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Although microalgae certainly represent a novel, promising source of several bioactive compounds such as astaxanthin, fucoxanthin, EPA/DHA, and phycocyanin, less attention has been paid to the difference between potential cultivation techniques and their associated environmental and sustainability footprint. Here, location, water availability and quality, cultivation technique, energy source, energy requirements, volumetric productivity, downstream approach, and carbon footprint are key factors in the overall sustainability profile of a given approach. Let’s take a closer look at two of those factors: location and water source.

 

Location

Location in this context can refer to both geographical location, but also the distinction between cultivation that takes place outdoors and cultivation that takes place indoors. In both cases though, access to a sustainable, stable, and renewable energy source is of critical importance.

 

Outdoor operations are usually located in warm, sunny climates and have the general sustainability advantage of using natural sunlight to drive the photosynthesis and thereby requiring less energy overall. The disadvantages include increased contamination risk and bioburden, low productivity, limited light utilization and a stronger need for external temperature adjustments – all of which can increase the environmental footprint substantially.

 

Indoor operations are usually more energy intensive as the process is often driven by artificial high-energy lighting. The advantages however include full parameter control (temperature, pH etc.), enhanced productivity (partly due to being able to cultivate both day and night), lower contamination risk and lower energy requirements for temperature adjustment. Locations with stable, low-temperature climates, low bioburden and access to renewable energy are therefore best suited for indoor microalgae cultivation.

 

Water availability & quality

Water is the single most important ingredient in microalgae cultivation. Microalgae cultures are predominantly made up of water (biomass density rarely exceeds 10 g/L and is often around 1-4 g/L), so it goes without saying that water availability and quality are critical factors. Sustainability and environmental considerations are tightly linked to the water source in many ways;

  • Sustainable, steady water access is of primary importance and water usage must not be at the expense of other industries or general usage.
  • Chemical pre-treatment of the water is needed in locations with poor water quality, and this has a negative impact on the overall sustainability and environmental profile.
  • The suitability of the local water profile needs to be aligned with the intended culture medium to be used and the microalgae species in question. If the profile is not suitable, adjustments need to be made and these can have negative environmental impacts.
  • Controlling water use by ensuring that evaporation rates are minimized is a sustainable step to take. Evaporation rates in open pond, outdoor systems can exceed 20% per day but in closed, indoor systems the evaporation rates can be maintained well below 1%

 

Overall, this discussion demonstrates that although microalgae cultivation for the production of bioactive compounds is an inherently environmentally friendly process, many details have to be taken into consideration to assess the overall sustainability profile and to compare products produced by different cultivation techniques and in different locations.

An Algalif Blog by Dr. Tryggvi Stefansson, CChief Operating Officer of Algalif

tryggvi@algalif.com

The benefits of astaxanthin for humans will be explored in future blogs – keep up to date by following us at www.algalif.com.

 

 

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studies https://algalif.is/studies/ Tue, 27 Feb 2024 12:45:56 +0000 https://algalif.is/?p=3163 The post studies appeared first on Algalif, Icelandic Producer of Pure, High-Grade, Natural Astaxanthin from Microalgae.

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The importance of high productivity https://algalif.is/the-importance-of-high-productivity/ Mon, 19 Feb 2024 09:41:46 +0000 https://algalif.is/?p=3150 Haematococcus pluvialis is a microalgae that has relatively mild optimal growth conditions. The optimal temperature is very close to room temperature, the optimal pH is almost neutral, and as a...

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Haematococcus pluvialis is a microalgae that has relatively mild optimal growth conditions. The optimal temperature is very close to room temperature, the optimal pH is almost neutral, and as a freshwater microalgae, the medium has almost no salinity.

In general, the neutraceutical market for astaxanthin does not tolerate the use of pesticides, antibiotics, or genetic modifications to H. Pluvialis. If we also take into account that H. pluvialis grows relatively slowly compared to many eukaryotic and prokaryotic organisms that thrive under the same cultivation conditions – it becomes clear that the cultivation of H. pluvialis for astaxanthin production is quite challenging.

 

Challenges of contamination

Everyone who has cultivated microalgae in photobioreactors under mild conditions knows that contamination of H. pluvialis cultures by other undesirable algae species is among the most significant issues of the process. Once a contaminant has gained ground in a photobioreactor, it is very hard to get completely rid of the contaminant – even when various methods to clean the system are combined!

So what is the best way to deal with the challenge of contamination? Algalíf has identified that the key factor to maintaining high culture quality and staying away from contamination issues is: Productivity!

Cultivation conditions

Algalíf has now been cultivating Haematococcus pluvialis for astaxanthin production for more than 10 years. One of the most significant takeaways from our extensive experince is that high productivity is not only important to gain as much astaxanthin from the cultivation as possible – but is also a key factor in minimizing the risk of contamination in the cultures. Coupled with early detection by contamination screening, high productivity means that any potential contaminant has less time to establish and take over the culture.

Algalíf has put a lot of effort into optimizing every single detail of the cultivation conditions at all culture stages to maximize the productivity of the photobioreactor systems. The success Algalíf has had in reaching high productivity means that Algalíf has less contamination issues than most other companies cultivating H. pluvialis, and is thus able to provide products of very high quality.

Jan Eric Jessen

An Algalif Blog by Jan Eric Jessen, M.Sc., Head of R&D.

jan@algalif.com

 

The benefits of astaxanthin for humans will be explored in future blogs – keep up to date by following us at www.algalif.com.

 

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Radiant skin with astaxanthin https://algalif.is/radiant-skin-with-astaxanthin/ Thu, 11 Jan 2024 12:56:17 +0000 https://algalif.is/?p=3138 In the ever-evolving world of skincare, one ingredient has emerged as a game-changer, promising radiant and healthy skin without the compromise of toxic chemicals. Astaxanthin, a powerful antioxidant derived from...

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In the ever-evolving world of skincare, one ingredient has emerged as a game-changer, promising radiant and healthy skin without the compromise of toxic chemicals. Astaxanthin, a powerful antioxidant derived from microalgae, has taken center stage in the beauty industry.

Astaxanthin can protect the skin from harmful UV rays which cause sunburn and speed up healing after sun damage. It also improves the overall condition and appearance of the skin. According to scientific studies, the best result is achieved by combining internal use with external application.

Clinical studies show that Astaxanthin increased skin hydration, reduced the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles, and reduced the appearance and formation of age spots as well. Comparing the benefits of astaxanthin versus vitamin E and vitamin C, studies have also shown that astaxanthin has more ROS scavenging capacity than either vitamin C or vitamin E. In addition to free radical scavenging, astaxanthin appears to exert its benefits on the skin through photoprotective and anti-inflammatory effects, as well as playing a role in DNA repair.

People who have eczema and are highly sensitive to sunlight can benefit from astaxanthin. If you are planning a sunny vacation, you can expect to get some benefits from that intake of astaxanthin in 4-8 weeks. For some people, results are noticeable in as little as two weeks. Natural astaxanthin is healthy, even if it takes longer to see results.

This potent antioxidant goes beyond aesthetics; it offers a range of benefits for the skin:

  1. Antioxidant protection:

Astaxanthin is approximately 6000 times more potent than vitamin C in its ability to neutralize free radicals, protecting the skin from oxidative stress and premature aging.

  1. Enhanced skin hydration:

It helps to lock in moisture, reducing water loss from the skin, and maintaining a plump, hydrated complexion.

  1. Reduction in fine lines and wrinkles:

Astaxanthin aids in improving skin elasticity and reducing the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles.

  1. Sun damage mitigation:

With its natural sun-blocking properties, Astaxanthin can help shield the skin from UV damage, making it an excellent addition to your daily skincare routine.

Learn more by going to the Algalif Knowledge Center. 

 

An Algalif Blog by Silja Dögg Gunnarsdóttir.

silja@algalif.com

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Summary of the ongoing seismic activities in Iceland. https://algalif.is/summary-of-the-ongoing-seismic-activities-in-iceland/ Tue, 14 Nov 2023 17:24:53 +0000 https://algalif.is/?p=3091 The ongoing volcanic eruption, that started on December 18th, and seismic activity near the town of Grindavik in the Reykjanes peninsula, do not affect the production capabilities or product delivery...

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The ongoing volcanic eruption, that started on December 18th, and seismic activity near the town of Grindavik in the Reykjanes peninsula, do not affect the production capabilities or product delivery abilities of Algalif Iceland. All Algalif employees are safe and there is no danger to any Algalif facilities.

Algalif is located in a safe area next to the Keflavik International Airport about 25 km from the active area. Both the airport and all other businesses in the area are safe and open.

The geology of Iceland.

Iceland is a volcanic island and very young in a geological context. The island of Iceland is the result of slow lava buildup for the past 20 million years. It is located on the Mid-Atlantic ridge where the North American and Eurasian tectonic plates meet. The plates move away from each other by a few centimeters every year. That means that earthquakes are quite common and there are volcanic eruptions on average every five years for as long as there is historical data.

Picture from Wikipedia.

Picture from Wikipedia.

The Icelandic power grid.

The Reykjanes Peninsula is partly an active volcanic area. That is one of the reasons some of Iceland´s geothermal power plants are located there. It has seen a lot of activity in recent years after being inactive for almost 800 years. This activity is located in a relatively small part of the peninsula near the town of Grindavik and east of that area. The international airport and Algalif are in another part of the peninsula, west of Grindavik in a non-active area.

About 2/3 of all electricity produced in Iceland comes from hydro sources and about 1/3 from geothermal sources. The Icelandic power grid is a circular one and all the major power plants are connected to the same grid. This means that even if something happens to the power lines or any other part of the grid, there is redundancy and always another route to get electricity to users. Therefore there is no reason for Algalif to make any special arrangements as enough green electricity for its continuous production of microalgae will be available.

Picture from Landsnet

Picture from Landsnet

Most of the island is a safe area.

The volcanically active area in Iceland stretches from the southwest corner to the northeast corner of the country, as seen in the picture. There are some rural towns in Iceland, that are located on, or very near, active volcanic areas. The main reason is that these towns developed before the active areas could be mapped out with modern scientific methods.

All major urban areas are located outside the active area. The same goes for the international airport in Keflavik and Algalif´s facilities. The airport is strategically based exactly where it is for several reasons, one of them being that it is a safe area regarding volcanic activities. This is also the reason why the area was chosen by the US government and NATO to build a military base a few decades ago.

Geothermal energy.

As Iceland is one of the most active volcanic areas on Earth, it is also an area where geothermal heat, with geysers and hot springs, is quite common. This gives Iceland a big advantage when it comes to central heating for homes and businesses, using hot water during the cold winter season. The production of green geothermal-based electric energy is a substantial part of the country’s electricity production. Only hydropower production is larger. This both increases the quality of life for the normal Icelander who can enjoy long showers and regular trips to the local public swimming pool and helps companies like Algalif to produce top-quality products in a sustainable way.

Picture from HS Orka

Picture from HS Orka

An eruption every other year for the last century.

At the same time, it requires constant management of the inherent risks of living on a volcanic island. The twentieth century saw more than 50 eruptions. One of them was in 1973 when a third of the town of Vestmannaeyjar was destroyed. Fortunately, only one person was lost from gas poisoning during that incident. In another instance in 1947 a scientist, doing measurements near the volcano Hekla, died.

In recent years there has been a lot of volcanic activity in Iceland. So far in the 21st century, there have been 13 eruptions. The most famous of them was in 2010 when the Volcano Eyjafjallajökull stopped air traffic for a few days in Northern Europe due to ash disbursement. Nobody has been lost in any of these 21st century events. This is largely because Icelanders have learned to live with the harsh nature on their island of fire and ice.

The current events.

The ongoing seismic and volcanic activity near the town of Grindavik in the Reykjanes peninsula looks to be a relatively small incident on the measurement of the potential scale of such events. However, it is situated very close to the old fishing village. There have been thousands of earthquakes there in the last few months, most of them small but some of them up to 4 in size. When this is written, a volcanic eruption started last night. It was powerful for the first few hours but has already slowed down a bit, even though it is still ongoing.  All inhabitants have been moved away from the area and the authorities are analyzing all available data with some of the world’s most experienced scientists to secure the safety of people. These are of course dramatic events and there has already been damage to roads and houses, but nobody has been injured.

In summary, Algalif is in a safe area near the Keflavik International Airport, about 25 km from the active area. Both the airport and all other businesses in that area are safe and open. The ongoing geological activity does not affect the production capabilities or product delivery abilities of Algalif Iceland. All Algalif employees are safe and there is no danger to any Algalif facilities.

This article was updated on December 19th.

By Svavar Halldorsson.

svavar@algalif.com

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