Afriplex Releasing First SA-Developed Rooibos API (Active Pharmaceutical Ingredient)

Afriplex (Pty) Ltd, regarded one of the leaders in API development and production in South Africa, has partnered with the South African Medical Research Council (SAMRC) and Agricultural Research Council (ARC) to develop Afriplex GRT™. The end result is Afriplex GRT™, an active pharmaceutical ingredient (API) that will use naturally occurring flavonoid compounds found in rooibos to target specific metabolic syndrome-related dysfunctions in the body. Afriplex GRT™ is regarded as the first of its kind to be developed in South Africa.

According to the World Health Organisation (WHO), the number of people with diabetes has risen from 108 million in 1980 to 422 million in 2014. Over the same period, the global prevalence of diabetes among adults over 18 years of age has risen from 4.7% in 1980 to 8.5% in 2014. The International Diabetes Federation (IDF) has predicted that diabetes will rise to 552 million by 2030 and that the greatest increase in diabetes is expected to take place in Africa. There are currently 14.7 million diabetics in Africa.


The focal point of developing Afriplex GRT™ was the potential health benefit for people managing the symptoms and effects of metabolic syndrome, diabetes, cholesterol and obesity. Apart from it being utilised as an effective anti-oxidant, research conducted by the SAMRC has indicated that flavonoid compounds found in rooibos play a role in cholesterol regulation and points to a positive effect on blood glucose levels as well as a reduction in insulin resistance.

Anti-diabetic and hypoglycaemic effects of Aspalathin-enriched rooibos extracts.

During the research phase focus was placed on developing a process where the naturally occurring flavonoid compounds found in Rooibos (Aspalathus linearis) were not compromised and to ensure optimised concentrations of the relevant functional components in the end product.

Studies using Afriplex GRT™ are ongoing with the main focus on its influence on the metabolic effects of obesity, cholesterol management and diabetes related conditions. Its use in treating metabolic disorders is covered by international patents. The first local product to be formulated with this novel ingredient will be launched in April 2018.

Afriplex recently presented Afriplex GRT™ at the international Biofach Exhibition in Nuremburg, Germany, where it attracted positive attention for its use in treating metabolic disorders. Afriplex GRT™ is covered by international patents and will be manufactured according to GMP standards in the Afriplex FDA approved facility in Paarl, South Africa.

The first local product to be formulated with this novel ingredient will be launched in April 2018.