Skip to Content

VAYA Pharma: New Research Highlights the Importance of Lipids for Memory Function

Vayacog®, a lipid based prescription medical food for the management of lipid imbalance associated with early memory impairment

GREENVILLE, S.C.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Mar 1, 2012 - About 20 million people in the United States aged 65 years or older suffer from early memory impairment disturbing their daily life as they struggle to remember the "right" word, faces and places. Of upmost concern are the findings that reveal an increased risk (up to 10-fold) in this population for further developing dementia, including Alzheimer's disease.

"Lipids, such as phospholipids and omega-3 fatty acids, are essential for proper brain development and function. Decreased brain levels of omega-3 fatty acids, particularly Docosahexaenoic acid (DHA), have been associated with increased risk of Alzheimer's disease (AD) and cognitive impairment," Says Dr. Yael Richter, R&D Director of VAYA Pharma. "Researchers have recently reported that in AD brains, compared to mild cognitive impairment (MCI), there is significantly lower percentage of DHA specifically in phosphatidylserine. Interestingly, no other differences in brain fatty acid composition were observed across the groups."

A study recently published in the Journal of Alzheimer's Disease, describes plasma and brain fatty acid compositions in MCI and AD brains with its main observation demonstrating how decreased DHA levels in phosphatidylserine in AD brains may represent a key biochemical modification underlying losses in brain function. Interestingly, phosphatidylserine containing DHA has been previously shown to increase DHA bioavailability to the brain in a pre-clinical trial. Therefore, Vayacog®, which is a phosphatidylserine-omega 3 compound, DHA enriched, may provide the protective lipids needed to preserve proper brain functions.

Vayacog® is a patent protected prescription medical food regulated by the FDA under the Orphan Drug Act and represents a new approach to help manage lipid imbalance associated with early memory impairment. Vayacog's recommended dose is one capsule daily or as directed by a physician.

Vayacog® efficacy was evaluated in a double-blind, randomized, placebo-controlled study, followed by an open-label extension. Study results, published in Dementia and Geriatric Cognitive Disorders journal, showed significant benefits for Vayacog® compared to the placebo group, in short and long-term memory, as well as in learning skills, specifically among participants with a relatively good cognitive performance prior to treatment.

Vayacog® has been successfully marketed in the last year throughout Texas, North Carolina and South Carolina. “Since we have launched Vayacog, we are getting a lot of positive feedback from physicians and consumers” says Dr. Ariel Katz, Enzymotec's President and CEO. “The role of lipids in our health is neglected by the medical community although it's known that about 60% of our brain is composed of lipids. This new research is consistent with previous reports supporting the association between lipid imbalance and memory problems.” Dr. Katz added.

VAYA Pharma is a specialty pharmaceutical division of Enzymotec Ltd. addressing disorders that are impacted by nutritional imbalances through the delivery of molecules familiar to the human body. VAYA Pharma specializes in prescription medical foods and last year alone launched products addressing three therapeutic segments: ADHD (Vayarin®), Hypertriglyceridemia (Vayarol®) and Memory impairment (Vayacog®).

Photos/Multimedia Gallery Available:


Contact: VAYA Pharma
Dr. Gali Artzi, +972-74-7177143


Posted: March 2012