Wednesday, December 20, 2006

Latest Hoodia supreme

It wasn’t just media news that caused supplement companies to begin looking for hoodia gordonii supplies. By researching hoodia Phytopharm, a British pharmaceutical company caused the initial stir of interest. Phytopharm continues to release hoodia info to the press, but details are limited.

Phytopharm has two operating divisions; a plant extract division and a pharmaceutical division. In June of 1997, Phytopharm released the first hoodia info to the press “a naturally occurring appetite suppressant is to be developed into a prescription medicine by Phytopharm”. They were talking about hoodia. Phytopharm sent supplement companies and those who needed to lose weight searching for this “naturally occurring appetite suppressant”. At that time, everyone expected the extract from hoodia Phytopharm would develop would be a prescription drug. This hoodia info was supported by Phytopharm’s collaboration with Pfizer, another pharmaceutical company, to research and develop a product made from hoodia. Phytopharm has now partnered with Unilever, since Pfizer returned the developmental and global marketing rights after closing their division which dealt with plant extracts. Unilever is not a pharmaceutical company. They sell food, dietary supplements and make the Slim Fast products. Now it is unclear what form the extract of hoodia Phytopharm is researching will take. The latest hoodia info from Phytopharm does mention that they are aware other companies are selling hoodia gordonii products, but they seem committed to the idea that theirs will be superior.

To start with hoodia, Phytopharm began proof of principle testing in March of 2001. This first phase was completed in December of 2001. The hoodia info released at that time stated that hoodia gordonii was a naturally occurring substance and there appeared to be no side effects associated with its use. After completing the initial clinical testing of hoodia, Phytopharm began the search for a partner company for “late stage development, sales and marketing”. This was how Pfizer and later Unilever became involved. Phytopharm is currently researching and investigating the possibility of a prescription drug to treat metabolic disorder and hoodia gordonii is the basis for this drug. So, when it comes to hoodia, Phytopharm seems busy, but this is not the only products they are currently investigating. In addition to hoodia info, Phytopharm’s press releases include info about two veterinary products, a treatment for Alzheimer’s disease, Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis and Parkinson’s disease.

The extract of hoodia Phytopharm’s is using for its research is patented, but they have had more than a little trouble keeping other manufacturers of natural products from selling their own hoodia gordonii products. In early May of 2006, they announced that they were aware that other companies were selling hoodia gordonii as an appetite suppressant and that they believed that this could be patent infringement. They said that they had contacted the appropriate authorities. Since then, the statement about patent infringement has been removed from their website. The problem is that a plant can not be patented. According to Phytopharm’s hoodia info, there product will be unique, stronger, safer and better than the hoodia products that are currently on the market. In a couple of years, after completing the clinical research of hoodia Phytopharm is expected to release its hoodia gordonii product and consumers will be able to judge for themselves. That's the latest hoodia supreme!