Last modified on 20 December 2011, at 03:28

Phytosterol and phytostanols


To create a technology landscape report on Phytosterols and Phytostanols

  • Identify market players with prolific IP activity in the technology area
  • Segment the players by the industry they belong to

Note: This report is just a template and gives an indication of what the paid report contains.

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Phytosterols (plant sterols) are triterpenes that are important structural components of plant membranes. Phytosterols (PS) are similar to cholesterol both in structure (but have different side chain configurations) and in function (Fernandes & Cabral, 2007).PS exist in free or esterified forms: free sterols form part of the cellular wall, where they play important structural functions, whereas sterol esters represent storage products within the cell. The most commonly encountered PS in higher plants is β-sitosterol, campesterol and stigmasterol. Saturated plant sterol derivatives are termed as plant stanols or phytostanols. They are produced by the hydrogenation of sterols and are not abundant in nature. Saturation of phytosterols by commercial hydrogenation processes, including the saturation of sitosterol and campesterol to produce phytostanol compounds such as sitostanol and campestanol (Clifton, 2002).


Dietary sources

S.No Food Total Phytosterols Content (mg/100g)
1 Oils and fats 39-919
Wheat germ oil 919
Palm oil 39
2 Nuts and seeds 104-360
Sesame seeds 360
Pea nuts 104
3 Cereals 20-344
Wheat germ 344
Puffed rice 20
4 Fruits 1-44
Passion fruits 44
Watermelons 1
4 Vegetables 4-50
Black olives 50
Boiled potatoes 4

Plant fats and oils contain phytosterols as naturally occurring constituents. The most important natural sources of plant sterols in human diets are oils and margarines, although they are also found in a range of seeds, legumes, vegetables and unrefined vegetable oils. Sterols make up the largest proportion of the unsaponifiable fraction of lipids. Other significant source of plant sterols are nuts, grains, and grain derived products; also sprouts, cabbages, cauliflowers, green and black olives (Marangoni & Poli,2010). The important sources of phytosterols in shown in Table 1.

The major sources of plant sterols used for incorporation into commercial products are tall oil and the by-products of edible oil production. Sterol and stanol esters can be obtained from tall oil, a phytosterol-rich by-product from pulping of pine and other trees.In such process, tall oil phytosterols are refined, purified, and then esterified with food-grade fatty acids. Phytosterols can also derive from vegetable oil refining, especially during the deodorizing process; a short-path distillation technique (molecular distillation) can lead to the extraction of large amounts of phytosterols.

Both sterols and stanols are frequently used in esterified forms, as fatty acid esters: this increases their solubility and allows their incorporation into lipid-based foods.

Health benefits

The consumption of both free and saturated plant sterols and their ester derivatives has the potential for reducing cholesterol absorption and improving circulation of lipids. The suppression of cholesterol absorption was the chief mechanism responsible for lowering plasma cholesterol levels, and the partial suppression of the resulting increase in cholesterol biosynthesis was a secondary action. Epidemiological data suggest that the PS content of the diet is associated with a reduction in the incidence of common cancers including cancers of the lung, stomach, colon, breast, and prostate (A. de Jong et al., 2003).

The development of food technology has created some foods enriched with phytostanols and phytosterols. At present, several functional food product types such as yoghurts and milk with added plant sterols and stanols are available on the market.

Concept Table

S.No English Keywords German Keywords French Keywords
Phytosterols Extraction Food Phytosterols Extraction Food Phytosterols Extraction Food
1 Sterol Extraction Functional Foods Sterole Extrakt Funktionale Food stérols extractives des aliments fonctionnels
2 Stanol Purification Functional lipids Stanol Reinigung Funktionale lipide stanol dépuration lipides fonctionnels
3 *** *** *** *** *** *** *** ***

  • An indicative list of terms to show how a concept table is generated. View paid report for complete list.
  • Concept Table was enriched by searches related to phytosterols and phytostanols, relevant patents, scientific articles and various thesauri

Relevant class codes and definition


IPC/ ECLA Class code Description Concept
A61K 31/56 Compounds containing cyclopenta[a]hydrophenanthrene ring systems; Derivatives, e.g. steroids [C0303] PHYTOSTEROL
** **
*** **
** **
C11B 13/00 Recovery of fats, fatty oils, or fatty acids from waste materials (mechanical separation from waste water C02F, E03F) EXTRACTION
*** ***
A23D 09/013 Other fatty acid esters, e.g. phosphatides PRODUCTS
** **
*** **

US Class

US Class code Description
552540 Carbon bonded directly at the 17 beta-position of the cyclopentanohydrophenanthrene ring system is a member of an acyclic chain of six or more uninterrupted carbons (e.g., sterols, etc.)
***** *******


F-term Definition FI COVERAGE
****** *******

Search strategy

Thomson innovation

  • Time line: 1991 to September 23,2011
  • Databases: US Grant, GB App, US App, FR App, WO App, DE Util, EP Grant, DE Grant, EP App, DE App, JP Util, JP Grant, JP App, CN Util, CN App, KR Util , KR Grant, KR App, DWPI

S.No ENGLISH (Title, Abst.,Claims)
Concept Scope Search String Total Records
1 ALL KEYWORDS PHYTOSTEROL ((sterol*6) or **** )) #
2 EXTRACTION ((extract*4) or or **** )) ##
3 PRODUCTS ((functional adj2 lipid*1) or **** )) ##
4 Keywords of phytosterol and class of extraction or products 1 and IPC /ECLA (C11B001300) or **** ) #
US 552545 or **** )
5 Keywords of extraction and class of products and phytosterols 2 and IPC /ECLA (A61K0031575 or **** ) ##
US 552****
6 Keywords of products and class of phytosterols or extraction 3 and IPC /ECLA (A61K0031575 or **** ) #
US 552540 or **** )
7 combined query 4 or 5 or 6 ##
8 Control patent US7833994B2 or **** )
9 8 and 9
10 Not keywords ((soybean adj2 variety) or **** ) ###
11 8 NOT 10 ## (No Relevant hits)
S.No GERMAN (Title, Abst.,Claims)
Concept Scope Search String Total Records
1 PHYTOSTEROL (Sterol or****) ###
2 EXTRACTION (Extrakt oor **** ) ##
3 PRODUCTS (funktionale Lipid or **** ) ##
4 Keywords of phytosterol and class of extraction or products 1 and IPC /ECLA (C11B001300) or **** ) #
5 Keywords of extraction and class of products and phytosterols 2 and IPC /ECLA (A61K0031575 or **** ) #
6 Keywords of products and class of phytosterols or extraction 3 and IPC /ECLA (A61K0031575 or **** ) #
7 combined query 4 or 5 or 6 ##
8 Not keywords (Östrogen or **** ) ###
9 7 NOT 8 ### (No relavant hits)
S.No FRENCH (Title, Abst.,Claims)
Concept Scope Search String Total Records
1 ALL KEYWORDS PHYTOSTEROL (stérols or **** ) ###
2 EXTRACTION (extraire or or **** ) ###
3 PRODUCTS (lipides fonctionnels or **** ) ###
4 Keywords of phytosterol and class of extraction or products 1 and IPC /ECLA (C11B001300) or **** ) #
5 Keywords of extraction and class of products and phytosterols 2 and IPC /ECLA (A61K0031575or **** ) #
6 Keywords of products and class of phytosterols or extraction 3 and IPC /ECLA (A61K0031575 or **** ) #
7 combined query 4 or 5 or 6 #
8 Not keywords (oestrogène or **** )
9 7 NOT 8 ### (No relevant hits)
S.No JAPANESE (Title, Abst.,Claims)
Concept Scope Search String Total Records
1 Keywords of phytosterol and JP F TERM of extraction or products Phytosterol English KW and JP F TERM (C11B001300) or **** )
JP F TERM (4H059BB57 or **** ) ###
2 Keywords of extraction and JP F TERM of products and phytosterols Extraction English KW and JP F TERM (4C086DA11or **** ) ###
3 Keywords of products and JP F TERM of phytosterols or extraction Produccts English KW and JP F TERM ((4C086DA11 or **** ) ###
4 combined query 1 or 2 or 3 ###
5 4 NOT (english not KW) # (No relavent hits)
FINAL COMBINED QUERY English or German or French or Japan ### (No relevant hits) ( .  %relevancy)


Relevant patents

S.No. Patent/Publication No. Assignee / Applicant Year Title Focus Dolcera Summary
1 US20050100619 N.V. NUTRICIA
P.O. BOX 1
2005 Cholesterol lowering supplement Cholesterol lowering composition containing phytosterol and fiber The cholesterol lowering formulation have bioactives such as phytosterols, soluble fiber, plant extract for HMG Co A inhibitors from natural source. These active have synergistic effect in cholesterol lowering. This can be used for long term with any harmful health effects occur from synthetic drug use.
2 US7718817B2 San-Ei Kagaku Co. Ltd.,Tokyo,JP 2010 Vegetable sterol ester-containing composition and additive that increases the feeling effects from a hair cosmetic Use of vegetable sterol ester in hair cosmetics Hair cosmetic with good feeling effect was formulated with less costly additive using vegetable sterol wax as lanolin substitute. The prepared formulation has good feeling effect on application.

Sample patent analysis sheet

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Assignee analysis and IP activity

Top Assignees

Top Assignees
Top Assignees in the Food Industry
Top Assignees in the Food Ingredient Suppliers
Top Assignees in the Personal Care Industry
Top Assignees in the Health Care Industry

IP Activity

IP activity based on priority year
IP activity based on publication year

Geographical Distribution

Geographical distribution of assignees
Geographical distribution of patents
Geographical Distribution of Patent Family Members

Dolcera Dashboard

Assignees were categorized based on the type of their products viz. food,food ingredients, Personal care, Health care,other industries, research and educational institutions etc and their patents have been shown in the Dolcera Interactive Dashboard.

A data preview of the dashboard is shown below:

Phytosterols and phytostanols dashboard

Phytosterols and phytostanols dashboard

Patent Product Mapping

Some products with respect to this technology area were identified and mapped to the patents from their respective assignees.

S.No Patent no. Title Assignee Products Product description by Company
1 WO2008125380A1
EDIBLE FAT CONTINUOUS SPREADS Unilever Becal dressing, Becal proactive milk, Becal proactive yoghurt, Becal proactive spreads, Flora light spread, Flora omega 3 plus, Flora buttery spread, Flora pro-active yoghurt drink light. Becal, Flora
2 **** *****
3 *** ****

Scientific articles

  • Database : Scirus
  • Timeline : 1991 - 2011
  • Subject Areas : Agricultural and Biological Sciences; Chemistry and Chemical Engineering; Engineering, Energy and Technology; Life Sciences; Medicine and Pharmacology.
  • Information Types : Abstracts, Articles, Articles in Press, Books, Conferences and Reviews.

S.No Scope Concept Search String Total Hits
1 KEYWORDS PHYTOSTEROL (sterol* or ******) ###### (No Relevant Articles)
Complete document Extraction (extract* oor ******)
Complete document Products (lipid* or ******)

Relevant Scientific Articles

  • The following graphs explain the placement of different Research Institutes and Universities in this technological area.

Top Research Institutes/ Universities

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