Introduction: We report previously unpublished, early pilot studies performed with a brain-health food supplement containing a proprietary blend of 100 mg phosphatidylserine (PS) and 80 mg phosphatidic acid (PA) produced from soy lecithin.
Methods: Serum analysis after single PS+PA ingestion was performed in healthy volunteers. A 3-month double-blind, placebo-controlled study assessed the influence of three PS+PA capsules/day, (300 mg PS + 240 mg PA/day) or placebo on memory and mood in functioning, non-depressive elderly people with memory problems, using the Wechsler Memory Scale and the List of Depressive Symptoms. Furthermore, a 2-month randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial assessed the effect of three PS+PA capsules/day (300 mg PS + 240 mg PA/day) or placebo on daily functioning, mental health, emotional state, and self-reported general condition in patients with Alzheimer's disease (AD).
Results: Serum PS peaked 90 min after ingestion, returning to baseline after 180 min. In the elderly, PS+PA [per protocol (PP) n = 31], unlike placebo (PP n = 26), significantly improved memory and prevented "winter blues" in a pre-post comparison. In the patients with AD, daily functioning (i.e., 7 activities of daily living) under PS+PA (PP n = 53) remained unchanged, but declined from 5.62 to 4.90 under placebo (PP n = 39; P = 0.035), with significant group difference (P = 0.021). The PS+PA group had 3.8% deterioration and 90.6% stability in daily functioning, compared to 17.9% and 79.5% under placebo, respectively (P = 0.066). Forty-nine percent of the PS+PA patients reported an improved general condition, compared to 26.3% under placebo (P = 0.084). Approximately, 43% of the PS+PA patients, but none under placebo, continued post-trial supplementation (while double-blinded). No negative side effects were observed.
Conclusion: PS is efficiently absorbed after oral consumption. A positive influence of PS+PA on memory, mood, and cognition was demonstrated among elderly test subjects. Short-term supplementation with PS+PA in patients with AD showed a stabilizing effect on daily functioning, emotional state and self-reported general condition. The data encourage long-term studies with PS+PA in AD patients and other elderly with memory or cognition problems.