Vitamins are present in a lot of food like juices, dairy products, baby food, cereals, sweets, tablets and vitamin mixtures. R-Biopharm AG offers a wide portfolio of different test systems to the analysis of vitamins.

Definition of vitamins

Vitamins are present in foods and foodstuffs of plant and animal origin. Vitamins are divided into two basic groups: fat-soluble vitamins and water-soluble vitamins. The fat-soluble vitamins are stored in the body what can lead in the most favorable case to a stock storage and therefore a constant supply could be superfluous. However, this profit can lead to health problems. Water-soluble vitamins, on the other hand, generally are not stored in the body, but are eliminated soon after consumption. Consequently, a regular intake of these vitamins is necessary.

Only vitamin B12 can be stored in the liver. There are a total of 13 vitamins and four, A, D, E and K are fat-soluble and the others, vitamins of the B group and vitamin C, are water-soluble. Because the body is unable to synthesize most of these essential organic compounds, therefore it is vital to ingest the vitamins. Nonetheless, Vitamin D is an exception, because the body can form it with solar irradiation in the skin itself. Also Niacin can be formed from the amino acid tryptophane by metabolism.

Vitamins strengthen the immune system, enable the body to use other nutrients, complement as enzymes, detoxify the organism and reduce the cardiac infarction risk. They are essential for our energy production and influence metabolism reactions without changing. Even low vitamin contents have a substantial effect. Nevertheless, under certain circumstances a vitamin deficiency can occur.

Application of vitamins in food, feeds and pharmaceutical products

For preventive purposes, food, feed and pharmaceutical products are often fortified with specific vitamins in order to compensate for actual and assumed deficiencies. Besides, liquid pre-mixtures are added by mixing or spraying.

Our test systems to analyse vitamins

VitaFast® tests are microbiological tests in microtiter plate formats. The microorganisms lyophilized on a microtiter plate increase in dependence of the added vitamin concentration, so that the turbidity can be measured with a microtiter plate reader. The determination is possible for all water-soluble vitamins.

EASI-EXTRACT® immuno affinity columns permit a sample preparation and concentration of vitamins from complex matrixes before the analysis by HPLC or LC-MS/MS. These columns are available for the vitamins folic acid, vitamin B12 and biotin.

RIDASCREEN® ELISA tests allow a quantitative analysis of single added vitamins (folic acid, vitamin B12 and Biotin) by an antigen-antibody reaction and evaluation by means of microtiter plate photometer and the RIDA® SOFT Win.

Legal regulations

On 22nd of November 2011, the food information order (LMIV) has been published in the official gazette of the EU. The new duties to inform are included to certain ingredients. Besides the vitamin contents marked on the label must also correspond to the end of the least durability date in the food, feed and pharmaceutical products.

According to recommendations of the society of German chemist (GDCh), tolerance is tolerated with the vitamins of group 3 (vitamin A, D, E, folic acid, vitamin B12 and Biotin) up to 30% of the marked salary, with the vitamins of the group 2 (vitamin B1, B2, B6, pantothenic acid, Niacin and vitamin C) it is 20% of the marked salary. Hence, it is necessary that manufacturers as well as supervision authorities control vitamin contents.