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Systemic Enzyme Therapy: Differences in Serrapeptase and Nattokinase

Systemic Enzymes: Breaking Down the Walls of Excess Fibrin

Systemic enzymes, used throughout Europe and Asia for decades, play an integral role in maintaining and supporting every function within the body. Enzymes are essential for sparking thousands of chemical reactions in the functions of growth, repair, reproduction, digestion, and metabolism system-wide. Though the differences in serrapeptase and nattokinase as systemic enzyme supplements are important, their general benefits are similar.

Systemic Enzymes also play a key role in:

  • regulating inflammation and fibrin in the body
  • signaling the body when to stop producing fibrin
  • eliminating excess fibrin that has accumulated

Enzymes Support Immune Function, Body Repair Mechanisms, & Sustain Body Functions

The strength and concentration of our enzymes is directly related to how well our bodies fight disease and infection, repair injured tissues, and sustain the body’s multitude of functions including reproduction. Without an adequate supply of systemic enzymes, we can suffer from impairment in digestion, scar tissue/fibrin regulation, blood coagulation, reproduction, respiration, and the immune system.

Systemic enzymes are also known as proteolytic enzymes, which simply means that they “eat” or dissolve proteins in the body that do not serve a healthy purpose.

Rogue proteins can be a result of:

  • an inflammatory process that has moved from being productive to unproductive
  • an auto-immune condition that is unregulated and causing damage to healthy tissues
  • protein-rich outer coverings of a virus that allow it to attach to healthy tissues and replicate.

Enzymes are an integral element in the healing processes and immune system function of the body.

Generally speaking, the body has a sufficient supply of enzymes though the age of 27.  Several modern-day influences – such as less-than ideal food and nutrition, toxic environments, chemicals, and stress – contribute to this decline. As our natural enzyme supply diminishes over time, we may notice that we take longer to heal and “bounce back” compared to when we were younger.

Without enzymes, we are more susceptible to diseases, we age more quickly, and our bodies degenerate faster. Systemic Enzyme Therapy can stem this tide and help replace what has been lost due to age and other factors.

The Differences in Serrapeptase and Nattokinase

Two primary systemic enzymes – serrapeptase and nattokinase – have been identified in the past several decades and they are proving to be very beneficial in combating certain health conditions related to chronic inflammation.*

While both have demonstrated to be the strongest and most fibrinolytic of their types, they have different but certain functions in the body. Understanding the differences in serrapeptase and nattokinase is an important step in determining which form of systemic enzyme therapy will be most beneficial.

Serrapeptase for Supporting a Healthy Inflammatory Response

Serrapeptase, also known as serratia peptidase; is a proteolytic enzyme isolated from the non-pathogenic enterobacteria Serratia E15.

It was first discovered as the protease synthesized by the silkworm to dissolve its strong fibrin-rich cocoon before it emerges as a moth.

Studies show that serrapeptase induces fibrinolytic, anti-inflammatory, and anti-edemic (preventing swelling and fluid retention) activity in a number of tissues.*1,2

Its anti-inflammatory effects are widely believed superior to other proteolytic enzymes due to its ability to dissolve the fibrous and/or scar tissue related to the inflammation.

Another primary benefit of serrapeptase is the reduction of pain attributed to the enzyme’s ability to block the release of pain-inducing amines from inflamed tissues.

Physicians in Europe and Asia use serrapeptase as an alternative to aspirin, ibuprofen, and other NSAIDs.

A primary role of systemic enzymes is to dissolve and digest non-living tissue – scars, excess fibrin, and adhesions.

Due to its strength and its natural design for dissolving the fibrous tissue of the cocoon, serrapeptase has been very therapeutic in the treatment of fibroids, scar tissue, systemic inflammation, and related pain.

Reducing inflammation and fibrin with a systemic enzyme formulated around the strength of serrapeptase, such as Vitälzȳm™, may be a useful strategy for reducing pain by way of clearing inflammation and halting the inflammatory process.*

Once the enzymes neutralize the proteins and remove the excess fibrin, the lymphatic and circulatory system can then eliminate them through normal detoxification processes. As excess unhealthy tissue is removed, proper blood flow is restored, promoting better circulation. After previous scar and other necrotic tissues have been eliminated, enzymes continue to keep the inflammatory response in balance so that further excess fibrin does not build up again.

Systemic enzymes, like serrapeptase, may be a safe and alternative treatment to pain and inflammation. They target only the excess or damaging fibrin/scar tissue and help regulate normal, healthy fibrin levels that are necessary for healing and repair after surgery or an injury.

Resolving issues of excess fibrin and scar tissue may have a tremendous impact on:

  • patient pain and discomfort related to women’s reproductive health
  • joint pain
  • gastrointestinal conditions
  • cardiovascular health
  • any chronic condition related to inflammation.*

Nattokinase for Managing Arterial Plaque Buildup

For decades, the medical community mostly agreed that an unhealthy cholesterol level was the primary cause of heart attacks. That is until autopsies confirmed that young victims of sudden heart attack did not have atherosclerotic plaque in their arteries.

After much controversy and research, we now know that vascular inflammation in the arterial walls can close off blood vessels as tightly as the buildup of plaque itself.

Inflammation in the cardiovascular system is no different than inflammation elsewhere in the body.

As a response to trauma, injury, or repeated insult to the body, inflammation sets off a cascade of events that becomes the root cause of the components of cardiovascular disease.

Without the proper mechanisms for managing chronic stress to the body and the inflammation that ensues, the body is vulnerable to uncontrolled inflammation and fibrosis which lead to plaque buildup and circulatory dysfunction.

Nattokinase** is a profibrinolytic enzyme extracted and purified from the essence of natto, a fermented soybean food used by the Japanese for thousands of years as a traditional food medicine. Nattokinase was first identified in 1980 by Dr. Hiroyuki Sumi, M.D., Ph.D., who was researching thrombolytic enzymes to dissolve dangerous blood clots. After testing more than 200 natural foods as potential thrombolytic agents, Sumi found that natto possessed a substance with “a potency matched by no other enzyme.” Dr. Sumi named the newly discovered enzyme nattokinase.

Natto also contains large amounts of vitamin K2, as do other fermented foods. Lack of vitamin K2 can cause calcium to be deposited in our arteries, aorta, and soft tissues rather than in our bones. Vitamin K2, along with magnesium, is critical for regulating calcium in the body to protect bone health and prevent calcium buildup in the arteries.

The same way serrapeptase successfully targets excess tissue in the form of fibroids and scar tissue, nattokinase is especially therapeutic when targeting thrombi in the cardiovascular system.

Because enzymes are a natural component in a healthy body, there is very little risk or occurrence of toxicity. But make no mistake, they are powerful.

For cardiovascular support, choose a systemic enzyme that includes nattokinase such as Nattovita or Vitalzym Cardio.

NOTE: Nattokinase, in particular, is very successful at improving blood flow and volume. Its use should be carefully considered and monitored if a person is being treated for blood coagulation problems. It should not be used by persons currently taking a prescription blood thinner, unless under the supervision of a healthcare provider.

Choosing the Systemic Enzyme Therapy Right for You

Vitalzym Extra Strength from World Nutrition

Vitälzȳm™ Extra Strength

If there is no cardiovascular involvement in a particular health complaint, a systemic enzyme formula, like Vitälzȳm™ Extra Strength, would be an appropriate choice for any condition related to pain, inflammation, and especially for excess scar tissue and fibrin.* In addition to a concentrated dose of Serrapeptase, the proprietary blend also includes the enzymes Bromelain, Papain, Rutin, Amylase, Protease, Lipase and Amla and is availalbe in 60, 180, and 360 count enteric coated capsule quantities.

Original Vitalzym Hybrid from World Nutrition

Vitalzym Original Hybrid

Vitalzym Original Hybrid is a hybrid formula that combines systemic and digestive delivery to provide total system support. It contains protease, serrapeptase, papain, bromelain, amylase, lipase, rutin and amla. The suggested dosage of Original Vitalzym is twice that of Extra Strength and comes in a 450 count.

Vitalzym Cardio from World Nutrition

Vitälzȳm Cardio™

For those who have concerns about cardiovascular health and would still like the benefits of a systemic formula, we recommend Vitälzȳm Cardio™. It’s especially formulated to harness the power of nattokinase with a therapeutic, yet safe, level of blood cleansing. Contains a proprietary blend of proteolytic enzymes plus CoQ10 and rutin for additional cardiovascular benefits.

Nattovita professional formula from World Nutrition


Nattovita systemic enzyme blend for cardiovascular health with CoQ10 and a highly fibrinolytic nutritional supplement with Nattokinase. It also includes a blend of vitamins and other systemic enzymes known for helping cleanse the blood and arteries.*

*These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration.  These products are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.

**Nattokinase is orally administered.  Its fibrinolytic activity in plasma lasts from 8-12 hours.  This contrasts with injectable fibrinolytic agents used at hospitals, which last 4-20 minutes during treatment via IV infusion. There is no toxicity (LD-50) associated with the intake of Nattovita.  However, due to its potency and effectiveness, close supervision is required if taken with anticoagulant drugs.


  1. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America, 1988 May; 85(9): 3245-3249
  2. Study Shows Serrapeptase Stronger than Trypsin, Chymotrypsin and Aspirin


  1. HI,

    if wanting to use serraptase for reduction of fibrin/scarring, does it matter how long the fibrous tissue may have been there before one starts to supplement? I had radiotherapy over a year ago and the oncologist said there would be considerable scar tissue in my chest. I only found out about serraptase not long ago for its properties and wanted to start a regime to try and get rid of some, but I was wondering if the length of time before starting it would make a difference?…. Thanks !a

    1. Unfortunately, we cannot advise on or recommend any product for specific health conditions. That is something only you and your health provider can determine. Thank you.

  2. Can your enzymes help with sports injuries such as inflamed archilles tendons, calf muscle soreness, back and shoulder pain. I am 56 and my injuries are not healing quickly.

    1. Hi. We appreciate your question, but since we are only a retailer and sell several brands of systemic enzymes, we cannot suggest products for a particular medical condition. We recommend you share the information from this post with your doctor and discuss your options from there.

    1. Hi Anna,

      Their proprietary blend includes multiple enzymes and we do not have the details about how much of each, including serrapeptase, are included. We suggest you contact World Nutrition directly if you are needing exact amounts of each enzyme. They can be reached at Sorry we can’t be of more help. Thanks!

    1. Hi Janet,

      Since Vitalzym is comprised of proteolytic enzymes that target protein, that is unlikely. Cellulite comes from a combination of factors, such as clustered fat cells and reduced circulation. There are many ideas out there about how to remedy cellulite, and most of them include several strategies, including exercise, massage, and dietary changes. In that regard, we offer the Bellabaci cupping therapy (, which may help in increasing circulation and breaking up the fat cells that cause the cellulite appearance. As with any supplements or alternative therapies, individual results vary and we cannot advise or guarantee any specific results. Thanks for your inquiry!

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