How Are NMN Supplements Made? Understanding the Process and Its Impact

Updated on January 7, 2024
How Are NMN Supplements Made? Understanding the Process and Its Impact
Key Points
  • Producing NMN supplements through chemical synthesis is widely practiced but can be costly and environmentally unfriendly.
  • Generating NMN via bacterial fermentation is more environmentally sustainable and less expensive, but it's a slower process.
  • Enzymatic conversion for NMN production is eco-friendly and yields more NMN than bacterial fermentation.

Nicotinamide mononucleotide (NMN) supplements, renowned for their potential anti-aging benefits, are produced through various methods, each with unique processes and implications. This article explores three primary methods—chemical synthesis, bacterial fermentation, and enzymatic conversion—detailing their procedures, followed by an evaluation of their pros and cons.

NMN Production Techniques

NMN is naturally found in all living organisms, leading to multiple manufacturing techniques. Chemical synthesis is common, yet it's expensive and not environmentally friendly. More sustainable methods involve using bacteria or enzymes.

Chemical Synthesis

Chemical synthesis of NMN can vary, but a popular method is the Zincke reaction. This process begins with a substance called p-toluenesulfonate, which undergoes chemical transformations to produce two types of NMN: ⍺-NMN and β-NMN. The latter, being the form used by our bodies, is isolated and purified for use in supplements.


  • Cost-effective: Chemical synthesis is often more straightforward and cost-effective than other methods.
  • High mass production potential: This method can be scaled up relatively easily, making it suitable for large-scale production.


  • Moderate purity: The purity of NMN produced by this method may not be as high as with other methods.
  • Potential contaminants: The process might introduce contaminants, affecting the final product's quality.
  • Environmental concerns: The use of toxic solvents can lead to environmental harm, and impurities or byproducts can be retained in the final product.

Fermentation Method

As an alternative to chemical synthesis, bacterial fermentation offers a less costly and more environmentally benign method. This process involves genetically modified bacteria like E. coli, which are cultivated in bioreactors with glucose and nicotinamide to enhance NMN production. After growing the bacteria, NMN is extracted and purified from the bacterial cells. This approach has achieved record NMN yields from bacteria.


  • High purity and safety: Generally produces high amounts of NMN with good purity and is considered safe.
  • Environmentally friendly: More environmentally friendly compared to chemical synthesis.
  • High mass production potential: Suitable for large-scale production.


  • Moderate cost: Might be more expensive than chemical synthesis.
  • Requires extensive purification: The process might need additional steps to eliminate contaminants.

Biological Enzyme Method

Enzymes in our bodies naturally convert nicotinamide riboside (NR) to NMN. However, replicating this in a lab setting is challenging due to the high cost of ATP, a key ingredient in the process. Recent studies have shown that using specific fungal enzymes alongside ATP-replenishing enzymes can produce NMN more efficiently and in larger quantities compared to bacterial fermentation.


  • Very high purity: Produces high levels of pure NMN.
  • Eco-friendly: Requires fewer protection and deprotection steps than chemical synthesis, making it more eco-friendly.
  • High safety: Generally considered a safe method.


  • High cost: Typically requires more investment and setup than other methods.
  • Moderate mass production potential: Scaling up might be more challenging compared to other methods.
  • Need for purified enzymes: Obtaining purified enzymes in large quantities can be expensive, and enzymatic reactions may require optimization of reaction conditions.

Upholding Quality and Safety in NMN Supplement Production

The production of NMN supplements is governed by various international regulations and standards to ensure they are safe for consumption. This includes adherence to Good Manufacturing Practices (GMP) and regular audits and inspections.

How is Our ROYAL NMN Made?

We prioritise minimizing the risk of chemical contamination in our production process. To achieve this, we use a fermentation method involving yeast to produce our NMN. Furthermore, we rigorously check for adulteration and the presence of common organisms, such as E. coli and coliforms, during the capsule-filling process at our factory. Additionally, we test the finished product for heavy metals and harmful microorganisms to ensure its safety.

Learn more about our commitment to safety here, where you can also access third-party certification confirming the safety of our product.

Transparency in NMN Supplement Production

Many NMN supplement manufacturers do not disclose their production methods, which can affect the purity and price of the products. While chemical synthesis can yield a high amount of NMN, it may also lead to impurities and higher costs. Enzymatic methods might offer purer and more affordable supplements, but without transparency from manufacturers, it's hard to determine the exact source and method of NMN production in supplements.

At our facility, we prioritize safety and environmental sustainability by utilizing the yeast fermentation method. This approach minimizes chemical contamination risks and ensures the highest quality and safety standards. Our commitment to rigorous testing for impurities and heavy metals reflects our dedication to delivering safe and effective NMN supplements.


  • Makarov, M. V., & Migaud, M. E. (2019). Syntheses and chemical properties of β-nicotinamide riboside and its analogues and derivatives. Beilstein Journal of Organic Chemistry, 15, 401-430.

  • Raj Kafle, S., et al. (2023). A holistic approach for process intensification of nicotinamide mononucleotide production. Bioresource Technology.

  • Qian, X., et al. (2022). Enzymatic synthesis of high-titer nicotinamide mononucleotide. Bioresources and Bioprocessing, 9(1).

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