Zembrin is the world’s leading researched and clinically studied extract of Sceletium developed over more than a decade by an international team of scientists and physicians.
Zembrin is an evidence-based botanical supplement that has been thoroughly studied for safety and efficacy in comprehensive preclinical as well as clinical studies.
Zembrin is experiential – It has mood-enhancing, anxiety-reducing and cognitive function enhancing activities, all of which can be of benefit to healthy people suffering from stress.
The history of Zembrin
A convergence of historical, anecdotal, in vitro, in vivo, clinical case studies, and clinical trial data support Zembrin’s experiential stress-reducing benefits.
The history of Sceletium tortuosum has been reviewed in various publications, and describes over 300 years of documented use by the indigenous people of South Africa, who know Sceletium as “Kanna.” This plant has been and continues to be used as a masticatory and a tea for well-being and to relieve physical and emotional stress.
Zembrin is the result of many years of research into the botany, chemistry, selection and cultivation of Sceletium tortuosum. Initial field work as far back as 1995 found that indigenous people could point out localities where traditionally used Sceletium plants were considered ‘strong’ and potentially euphoria-inducing (known as “sterk” or wild plants in the vernacular) and adjacent localities where identical looking traditionally used Sceletium plants were considered ‘mild’ and used for stress (known as “mak” plants in the vernacular). Analytical work determined that the potentially intoxicating plants had high total alkaloid content and the alkaloid composition were particularly high in the alkaloid mesembrine. These plants are typically fermented traditionally to enhance even further the euphoriant potential. Analytical work determined that the mild (‘mak’) plants had a lower total alkaloid content and the alkaloid composition was low in the alkaloid mesembrine. In the interests of having a safe, reproducible, mild product suitable for functional foods and supplements, seed stock for cultivation of Zembrin was taken from the traditionally used plants with low alkaloid content and low mesembrine composition. All subsequent work was aimed at maintaining a large gene pool of plants of this responsible alkaloid content and composition, giving a reproducible raw material suitable for producing a consistent and safe extract for applications in the nutraceutical industry.
Despite long term daily use, Sceletium was shown to not have addictive properties, and screening for central nervous system targets associated with addiction support this.
The science behind Zembrin
Zembrin is the world’s leading researched and clinically studied extract of Sceletium tortuosum developed over more than a decade by an international team of scientists and physicians.
With self-affirmed Generally-Recognized-As-Safe (GRAS) status in USA, Zembrin is an evidence-based botanical supplement that has been thoroughly studied for safety and efficacy in comprehensive preclinical as well as clinical studies.
In Canada, Zembrin has been approved for sale to “support cognitive function in adults”.
Zembrin has a patented, dual mechanism of action, that includes phosphodiesterase-4 (PDE4) and serotonin (5-HT) re-uptake inhibition. In addition to discovering the molecular mechanisms of action for this ingredient, the Zembrin scientific team has thoroughly studied the safety of Zembrin through in vitro, acute and sub-chronic in-vivo studies.
Zembrin is experiential – its effects can be felt. It has mood-enhancing, anxiety-reducing and cognitive function enhancing activities, all of which can be of benefit to healthy people suffering from stress. The unique signature of Zembrin is ‘alert serenity’.
The first standardized extract to have been made from Sceletium, Zembrin is manufactured to the highest international standards at a certified EU-GMP manufacturer. It is produced from a proprietary elite naturally occurring chemotype of Sceletium – the first large-scale commercial cultivation of a Sceletium chemotype.
The product has been patented, with granted patents and new patent applications, and is the only Sceletium extract with published pharmacology.
Zembrin has major advantages over other dietary supplements and nutraceuticals, including very rapid onset of action, experiential efficacy (most users can experience an effect within one to two days of taking it), and exceptional safety and tolerability.
Zembrin is derived from a naturally occurring and traditionally used selection of Sceletium, and trough the careful control of cultivation there is full traceability from seed stock to the individual batches of extract, to ensure consistency with the desired chemical profile.
Due to its unique chemical composition, selected from highly variable naturally occurring plants, all clinical and preclinical safety and efficacy research on Zembrin applies only to this proprietary standardized Sceletium extract, and not to other Sceletium-based products.
Full access to peer-reviewed, published articles on safety and efficacy trials with Zembrin can be found here.
Sustainability and social responsibility
Zembrin is a socially responsible, ecologically sustainable, vertically integrated and fully traceable botanical ingredient.
When HG&H Pharmaceuticals set out to develop Zembrin they were determined to formally acknowledge and reward the contribution of the San people who had originally discovered and used the South African plant Sceletium. This has been achieved through a formal benefit-sharing agreement with the South African San Council: Africa’s first prior-informed consent benefit-sharing agreement. As a result, Zembrin is the only Sceletium product to carry the logo of its indigenous beneficiaries, the South African San Council.
Sceletium tortuosum is a protected species and wild-harvesting is not sustainable for commercial products. The company committed at the outset to only use cultivated plant material in the production of Zembrin to avoid depleting threatened wild plant stocks, and to ensure consistent product quality. We have achieved this by investing in a highly successful new crop development programme, and annually cultivate our own selection of Sceletium on a large commercial scale.
The high standard for responsible commercialization of indigenous knowledge set by the company was highlighted as a model at the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) held in Nagoya, Japan during October 2010.
In 2013 Zembrin was awarded the Nutraingredient Editor’s Award for the most sustainable ingredient at Natural Products Expo West held in Anaheim, USA.
Also in 2013 Dr Nigel Gericke was awarded the South African Indigenous Plant Use Forum (IPUF) Best Product Award for the innovative development work on Zembrin, taking an indigenous plant from concept to clinical study.