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Safety of zinc l‐carnosine as a Novel food pursuant to Regulation (EU) 2015/2283 and the bioavailability of zinc from this source in the context of Directive 2002/46/EC on food supplements

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Metadata

Panel members at the time of adoption

Dominique Turck, Torsten Bohn, Jacqueline Castenmiller, Stefaan De Henauw, Karen Ildico Hirsch‐Ernst, Helle Katrine Knutsen, Alexandre Maciuk, Inge Mangelsdorf, Harry J McArdle, Androniki Naska, Carmen Pelaez, Kristina Pentieva, Alfonso Siani, Frank Thies, Sophia Tsabouri and Marco Vinceti.

Abstract

Following a request from the European Commission, the EFSA Panel on Nutrition, Novel Foods and Food Allergens (NDA) was asked to deliver an opinion on zinc l‐carnosine as a novel food (NF) pursuant to Regulation (EU) 2015/2283 and as a source of zinc for use in food supplements. The NF is produced by chemical synthesis and is proposed to be used in food supplements as a source of zinc. The target population proposed by the applicant is individuals above the age of 12, excluding pregnant and lactating women. The NF which is the subject of the application is a chelate‐complex, formed between Zn2+ and l‐carnosine and is present as a mixture of a monomer and a dimer. The material is a powder with particulate nature and is insoluble in water at neutral pH. No relevant data using an existing zinc source as comparator have been made available by the applicant and the actual bioavailability of the zinc provided by the NF at the proposed use levels remains uncharacterised. Owing to the lack of a correct characterisation of the fraction of small particles, including nanoparticles of the NF, the Panel is not in the position to evaluate specification limits for the size of the constituent particles in the NF. Owing to the lack of information on the size distribution and the physico‐chemical properties of the particles constituting the NF, the Panel is not in the position to confirm whether the ADME studies and the toxicological studies provided by the applicant are appropriate to assess the safety of the NF. The Panel concludes that the NF is absorbed and provides zinc, but as it is in an insufficiently characterised particulate form, its safety has not been established and the bioavailability has not been determined.