From some case studies and research, we have learned some key facts of aging population around the world as the following below:
Between 2015 and 2050, the proportion of the world's population over 60 years will nearly double from 12% to 22%. By 2020, the number of people aged 60 years and older will outnumber children younger than 5 years. In 2050, 80% of older people will be living in low- and middle-income countries. The pace of population ageing is much faster than in the past. All countries face major challenges to ensure that their health and social systems are ready to make the most of this demographic shift.
At the same time, we noticed that nowadays there is a tendency for older adults to have cognitive disorders and memory loss. Cognitive disorders are generally different amounts of different degrees of cognitive domain impairment, difficult to recover, memory impairment is a medium symptom, is bound to appear and irreversible, but can be improved and delayed by a variety of non-drug therapies.
If an accurate and available treatment would be applied to these cognitive disorder patients, there would be less pain and suffering for them.
The effects of catechin and its safety
As a chemical widely exist in various fruits and tea, the effect of catechin has underwent comprehensive studied. Generally, the study in early year confirmed that catechin has beneficial effects on adult human vascular function. The following research revealed some further effects of the catechin. This includes improvement of cognitive function and metabolism profile. Based on these researches, we reckon that it could be a possible way to add catechin as a food additive into bread.
Using existing metabolism pathway to produce catechin
After coming up idea using S. cerevisiae to produce catechin during the fermentation, we still need a valid pathway to achieve that. What we do is to search for existing pathways that have potentials that can be adopted into the pathway we need.
What inspire us is an article that improve the catechin production in Escherichia coli, Meanwhile, another article that synthesize anthocyanins in S. cerevisiae demonstrate the possibilities to synthesize catechin. It is through reference to these articles that we finally finalized how our metabolic pathways should be constructed.
Diversified application of our products
Catechin has outstanding health care effects, but the medium to consist of is important as well. Admittedly, catechin have significant effects on health, while the taste of the products could also be a challenge. The catechin itself has a little bitter, which may result clients hard to accept for the first time. As the name our project, we initially tend to combine the catechin with the bread to produce bread with it.
However, when we communicate with our potential customers, including seniors and youth, we observe that they have various requirements to forms to our projects. For instance, a student in our school expect that we can combine the catechin produced with milk in order to supply calcium and catechin at same time.
This inspires us a new aspect for us to think of final products. In fact, we can extract the products into concentration stage. Then we can choose bread, liquid or even ice-cream to carry our products, which means adding it into these foods as food additive. It is significant as we can fulfill requirements of different client groups, considering that they have various expectations towards ‘health care products.
Bread as a vector
We investigated the elders around our lives, and found out that they are likely to have staple foods like bread, steamed buns and porridge when having meals. most elders can't reject the attraction of staple foods like bread, rice and porridge. Bread, however, as a soft and editable type, has the most possibility to attract consumers and make sure the chemical compound is firmly added.
Briefly, we developed a functional food uses bread as a main vector of catechin, that improves cognitive and memory ability of human brains.
 Schroeter H , Heiss C , Balzer J , et al. Epicatechin mediates beneficial effects of flavanol-rich cocoa on vascular function in humans. Proc Nat Acad Sci (USA)[J]. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 2006, 103(4):1024-1029.
 Daniela M , Catherine K U , Davide G , et al. Cocoa flavanol consumption improves cognitive function, blood pressure control, and metabolic profile in elderly subjects: the Cocoa, Cognition, and Aging (CoCoA) Study—a randomized controlled trial[J]. American Journal of Clinical Nutrition(3):538-548.
Lv Y , Koffas M , Zhou J , et al. Optimizing oleaginous yeast cell factories for flavonoids and hydroxylated flavonoids biosynthesis. 2019.