New Clinical Study finds ABG+® could help reduce cardiovascular risk factors


Pharmactive Black Garlic Extract Showed Impressive Results helping manage Blood Pressure

This article would like to present the first Human Clinical Study for ABG+®, Pharmactive’s premium Aged Black Garlic, published in Nutrients on January 18, 2022. In this clinical study, a group of individuals with moderately elevated cholesterol levels consumed Aged Black Garlic (ABG+®) and demonstrated its potential to balance blood pressure favourably.

ABG+® is grown and cultivated locally, just two hours from Pharmactive’s facility, and gently processed under green technology with a proprietary extraction process called ABG Cool-TechTM. As a result, the process generates shallow waste and significantly reduces the environmental impact.

Unbalanced Blood Pressure is a Global Concern

Occasional elevated blood pressure affects nearly a third of adults worldwide and is the leading preventable risk factor for cardiovascular problems and all-cause mortality. The risks associated with common cardiovascular issues and stroke double with every 10mm Hg diastolic increase among people aged 40 to 89.

This is the first clinical study conducted on ABG+®, spurred by the company’s encouraging results of two previous animal studies. Those trials demonstrated the ingredient’s cardioprotective role and its ability to help balance blood tension and enhance vascular function favourably.

Study with Positive Results

The human clinical study, randomized, crossover, double-blind, controlled intervention was conducted at the Sant Joan de Reus University Hospital in Barcelona. The study was led by Dr. Rosa Valls, author of more than 150 scientific papers, and included 67 adult volunteers with relatively high blood LDL levels. Each participant consumed 250mg ABG+® or a placebo over six weeks, with a three-week wash-out period before crossover.

ABG+® helped reduce Diastolic Blood Pressure

Six-week results demonstrated that ABG+® extract significantly reduced diastolic blood pressure (DBP) by 5.85mm Hg on average compared to the placebo. The positive reaction was particularly evident in men.

“A reduction of just 5mm Hg of diastolic blood pressure lowers substantially the risk of stroke and other vascular events,” explains Alberto Espinel, Head of R&D for Pharmactive.

“This is the first evidence emerging on the blood pressure-balancing effect of an ABG+® ingredient, as a natural alternative, in a population where the strategies of intervention are based on diet and maintaining a healthy lifestyle as opposed to the conventional approach,” adds Espinel.

“Its positive effects were achieved following a simple protocol of consuming one ABG+® extract tablet daily.”

“Future clinical studies assessing the capacity on the blood-pressure management of ABG+® extracts are in the pipeline,” adds Julia Diaz, Head of Marketing for Pharmactive. “Lifestyle choices, including dietary protocols such as the DASH or Mediterranean diets, are the first line of treatment for delaying and preventing increases in blood pressure. ABG+® offers an additional potent—and flavorful—nutritive tool for helping to manage blood pressure, especially in people who have difficulty abiding by dietary protocols.”

“Lifestyle choices, including dietary protocols such as the DASH or Mediterranean diets, are the first line of treatment for blood pressure.”

Clinical Study Main Conclusions

This is the first study of the potential DBP-reducing effect of an ABG+® ingredient in a population where the strategies were based on diet and maintaining a healthy lifestyle, and the effects were observed following an easy treatment schedule of one optimized ABG+® extract tablet consumed daily.

In summary, the results of this study suggest that ABG+® supplementation may decrease diastolic blood pressure (DBP).

The observed reduction in DBP by ABG+® was similar to the effects of dietary approaches, including the impact of other nutritional guidelines such as the Mediterranean or the palaeolithic diets.

Aged Black Garlic a Millenary Delicacy


“Aged black garlic has long been regarded as a culinary delicacy and integral component of the Asian diet, as well as a tool to maintain health,” asserts Espinel. “Empirical evidence is unfolding on the beneficial effects of black garlic on cardiovascular health. However, the magnitude of its effect depends on the amount and type of chemical compounds accumulated during the ageing process and the ability to extract and preserve those compounds during processing.”

This savoury ingredient is traditionally produced by ageing whole bulbs of a selected Spanish species of fresh garlic at high humidity and temperatures for a minimum of 30 days. The garlic cloves turn dark and assume a soft, jelly-like texture while losing the characteristic pungent garlic flavour as it turns sweet. During this process, the aged bulbs undergo substantial biochemical changes. The main organosulfur compounds in fresh garlic—alliin and allicin—are diminished. Yet the bioactivity of a complex of soluble polyphenols, predominantly S.A.C., flavonoids, and melanoidins, is significantly increased. The synergetic action of these antioxidants is believed to be the primary source of the cardioprotective qualities of ABG+®.


Aged Black Garlic a Natural Option for your New Formulas

Pharmactive’s ABG+® extract is standardized to 1.25mg S-allyl-L-cysteine (S.A.C.) polyphenols. It is produced using the company’s proprietary ABG Cool-Tech® ageing technique. Its rich concentration of S.A.C. is confirmed by HPLC (high-performance liquid chromatography). This ingredient complied strictly with European ethical standards and was evaluated and approved before participant recruiting.

SAC is virtually absent in fresh garlic, yet is synthesized and accumulated during ageing at specific ambient conditions,” explains Espinel. “Most commercial black garlic products on the market are intended just for their culinary properties lack SAC”. In other cases, SAC is produced in garlic by long industrial processes which included the soak of the bulb into organic solvents, as happens in the so-called “aged garlic”. Aged black garlic induction process and parameters depend on the manufacturer. In addition, the presence and concentration of active substances rely critically on the production process. This compromises the content of bioactives and is the reason the available studies of black garlic extracts show contradictory results and health capabilities.

Galenic Forms

ABG+® is a natural ingredient that can be incorporated in different galenic applications for the nutraceutical and the food industry. Pharmactive also offers other Aged Black Garlic ingredients for functional foods and beverages.

All ABG+® is available in different standardizations, and it can be adapted to customer’s needs:
Pharmactive adapts ABG+® formula to its customer’s needs and galenic formulations, offering the following standardization possibilities:

    • ABG10+®: Standardized to ≥0.1% SAC
    • ABG10+® Organic: Standardized to ≥0.1% SAC
    • ABG25+®: Standardized to ≥0.25% S.A.C.

ABG+® family of ingredients are water-soluble and can be used in multiple applications and galenic forms, including gummies, capsules, soft gels, syrups, and powders. In addition, ABG+® ingredients are ideal for functional foods and even gummies due to the absence of garlic’s characteristic odour and flavour.


Water-soluble. Multiple applications.


Valls, R.M.; Companys, J.; Calderón-Pérez, L.; Salamanca, P.; Pla-Pagà, L.; Sandoval-Ramírez, B.A.; Bueno, A.; Puzo, J.; Crescenti, A.; Bas, J.M.d.; Caimari, A.; Salamanca, A.; Espinel, A.E.; Pedret, A.; Arola, L.; Solà, R. Effects of an Optimized Aged Garlic Extract on Cardiovascular Disease Risk Factors in Moderate Hypercholesterolemic Subjects: A Randomized, Crossover, Double-Blind, Sustained and Controlled Study. Nutrients 2022, 14, 405

Link to Clinical Study:

Previous ArticleNext Article
Pharmactive Biotech Products, S.L. is a privately-owned Spanish company that develops, and manufactures differentiated natural ingredients supported by scientific evidence. Pharmactive makes these innovative ingredients available to other companies in the Nutraceutical, Pharmaceutical and Veterinary Industries for marketing/distribution.


  1. Very interested if ABG+(R) would assist with cholesterol lowering, i.e. similar to red yeast rice, monacolin K?

    1. Hi Felicia,

      ABG+® promotes healthy blood pressure within a normal range (one clinical study already published) and supports healthy cholesterol levels within a normal range.

      If you need more info, please send us an email at

      We are more than happy to explain what are the main differences between our aged black garlic and monacolin K.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *