An Australian biotech claims to be patenting the world’s first low-GI sugar

A cake eating content. Ralph Orlowski/Getty Images

(Editor’s note: The claims made by the company in the statement to the ASX on which this article were based have been retracted following a court ruling.)

Holista CollTech, a Perth-based biotech, announced it had filed a patent for the world’s first low-GI sugar made out of all-natural ingredients.

A short time ago, its shares were up 38% to $0.145.

The company says the new sugar is the result a collaboration with 2017 Nobel Prize nominee and emerging thought leader in carbohydrate chemistry, Daryl Thompson.

Thompson and Rajen Manicka, CEO of Holista, are both listed as co-inventors.

Manicka says the low-GI product mimics how nature adds sugars found in fruits and vegetables.

“Sugar in nature is low-GI and our formula is based on this insight,” he says.

“It satisfies all the sensory requirements of sugar. It also can replace sugar in its many industrial applications with minimal formulation challenges.”

Holista’s natural low-GI sugar, unlike other sugar alternatives which are usually only used in beverages, can be melted, baked and caramelised for use in cooking.

A 2012 study in the journal Nature argued that sugar be considered as toxic as other substances harmful to health, such as alcohol or tobacco.

High-GI foods are rapidly and easily converted by he body to sugar, causing spikes in blood sugar levels that can lead to heart disease, diabetes and obesity.

Holista says the low-GI sugar formula is being refined before testing at GI Labs in Toronto, Canada.

The company expects to launch the product by June this year.

The impact on the food industry could be significant.

Holista says says consumer surveys repeatedly show people don’t want to see “sugar” on the label of their foods.

Until now, the only alternative is chemical-based.

Holista CollTech Ltd is the result of the merger between Holista Biotech of Malaysia and CollTech Australia.

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