BASF Nutrition & Health is launching an omega-3 fatty acid product in Switzerland to help patients manage Non-Alcoholic Fatty Liver Disease (NAFLD), its first market in continental Europe for the product.

“Hepacor will be marketed, sold and distributed as a food for special medical purposes across Switzerland through Ideogen, a Swiss pharmaceutical company with expertise in speciality care,” BASF said on 26 November.

“Containing highly concentrated and purified eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA), Hepacor is designed to correct the nutritional deficiency of patients with NAFLD and can address a build-up of fat in the liver, known as steatosis, in NAFLD patients.”

BASF Nutrition & Health said NAFLD was one of the most common forms of chronic liver disease worldwide.

“Studies have shown that NAFLD patients suffer from EPA and DHA deficiency. A clinical study has shown that Hepacor corrects this deficiency and raises the levels of these important fatty acids in the blood.”

Increasing EPA and DHA levels could help to reduce the fat burden in the liver by improving the liver’s ability to process excessive pre-existing fat and, at the same time, inhibit the creation of new fat from dietary carbohydrates, the division of the German chemical firm said.

“The launch of Hepacor in Switzerland marks a major milestone in BASF’s plans to commercialise a dedicated solution for NAFLD management globally.”

BASF said Hepacor was manufactured in Norway using a patented purification technology to reduce persistent organic pollutants and other substances like unwanted lipids such as cholesterol, which were naturally found in all fish oil-based products.