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Research Probiotics: new natural ingredients


Probiotics: new natural ingredients

Publié le : 07-09-2012

The use of live probiotics instead of cell extracts opens a new pathway for product development. These germs are actually known for their beneficial effects on human health. In cosmetics, they can contribute to an improved protection of the skin barrier.


Probiotics are live microorganisms that present viability problems during the entire duration of use of products.

Food manufacturers, to overcome these difficulties, have either freezedried the strains or prepared products
with a shorter shelf life and to be kept in a cold place.


Although cosmetic companies have understood the significant advantage offered by these actives, they were so far only able to use probiotics through their extracts which are easier to stabilize in complex formulations mixtures.


Formulations to stabilize probiotics


To overcome these issues, the EBInnov® team of the École de Biologie Industrielle, in association with the Kloarys Développement company, has proposed a reasoned approach which was awarded the Cosmetic Valley label: Ecosmetic project.


It consists in the selection of ingredients enabling the survival of anaerobic germs during several months at room temperature and for at least 18 months at +4°C.


To evaluate the survival of bacteria, the acquisition of a Bactron anaerobic chamber (photo 1) enabled to
select the germ of interest, a strain of Lactobacillus plantarum (Fig. 2), and reduce time and costs associated
with counts.


The screening stages for compatible ingredients being long – given the low decrease in viability of probiotics in these innovative formulations – the team developed an accelerated stability approach by design of experiments.


With this approach, compatible ingredients (oils, gelling agents, emulsifiers...) were identified and enabled the development of a first cosmetic product.


This innovative device contains the strain of L. plantarum in a gelled apolar oily phase.


Upon application, this oil is extemporaneously mixed with an emulsion thanks to a suitable packaging.


The developed product enables improved sensory acceptance and efficiency, especially in the protection of mucous membranes.


With these results, it was possible to file a European patent.


Research and applications dedicated to cosmetics


The objective of EBI’s EBInnov® research laboratory is to develop innovation through the pooling of researchers’ complementary skills and the transfer of knowledge from one industry to another.


The laboratory is organized around four areas of expertise: Molecular Biology to screen proteins of interest,
Formulation and Sensory to design a product suiting the company, Process engineering to innovate in more eco-friendly processes, and Microbiology to ensure and validate the preservation of products.

EBInnov® has facilities dedicated to each of its R&D activities organized in technology platforms and labs.


This thematic organization around main techniques within scientific centres enables the creation of ad hoc teams for each deployed project.


Any type of means like sensory panels or pilot equipments can be made available to partners to support
product innovation.

Hence, the EBInnov® expertise on the micro-organisms/formula/ preservation interaction is of particular
value for research and development work in cosmetics.



Florence Dufour, Christine Mielcarek, Anne‑Marie Pensé‑Lhéritier
Ecole de Biologie Industrielle (EBI), Cergy‑Pontoise


Patrice Malard / Kloarys Développement


Christophe MASSON
Cosmetic Valley/Research and Innovation Manager

Cosmectic Valley version mobile



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