Yeast Beta Glucan for a Better Immune System

By Murniati Abu Karim
Photo Izwan Azman

Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia (UKM) and Mead Johnson Nutrition (Malaysia) inked a Memorandum of Agreement (MoA) to conduct a study on the efficacy of yeast beta glucan supplementation in adults to strengthen the immune system, improve fatigue, and gut health.

According to a co-researcher Dr Munirah Ismail, yeast beta glucan is one of the immunomodulators that has immune stimulating properties which may be a useful tool to prime the host immune system and increase resistance against invading pathogens.

“Most clinical studies look at the effectiveness of yeast beta glucan at high doses, but this study will look at the impact on gut health in adult populations using a low dose of yeast beta glucan.

“This is the first well-designed human clinical trial study which includes a comprehensive marker to investigate the effect of immunonutrition on respiratory tract infection, fatigue, immune response and its impact on gut microbiome.

“The clinical trial will include over 100 working adults who will be supplemented with yeast beta glucan-containing milk twice a day for three months.

“There will be three groups in total, with two receiving 100g and 200g yeast beta glucan, respectively, and one serving as a control group,” she said.

The research team expect that the findings of this study will provide a positive effect on the value of immunonutrition supplementation using yeast beta glucan at a lower dosage on upper respiratory tract infection, fatigue, immune response health outcome and be able to generate new insights about the mechanism of action of yeast beta glucan in the microbiota immune axis.

Representing UKM at the MoA signing ceremony was Deputy Vice-Chancellor Research and Innovation, Prof. Dato’ Dr. Wan Kamal Mujani. According to him, this collaboration not only fulfils UKM’s mission as a university that contributes to society by imparting scientific knowledge, but also as a community member committed to improving the health of Malaysians.

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