Collagen peptides are a versatile source of protein and an important element of healthy nutrition. Their nutritional and physiological properties promote the health of bones and joints, and contribute to beautiful skin.
Collagen consists of three polypeptide chains. These so-called α-chains are wrapped around each other to form triple-helical macromolecules: a unique structure, size and amino acid sequence. In collagenous sequences, glycine (Gly) is present as every third residue. This enables the formation of the three chains into a triple-helical structure. Thus, the common feature for all collagens is a sequence that can be expressed as (Gly-X-Y)*n, where X and Y are frequently represented by proline (Pro) and hydroxyproline (Hyp), respectively. This sequence is necessary for the collagen to assemble the fibrils that subsequently form fibers, providing unmatched structural integrity for the extracellular matrix of conjunctive tissues.
The raw material for collagen peptides – as for gelatine – is collagen protein. Collagen peptides, however, are relatively small molecules with a molecular weight of less than 10,000 g/mol. The peptides comprise at least two and at most 100 amino acids. They are characterized by excellent cold-water solubility and, even in highly concentrated solutions, they do not form a gel.