Which is better, glucosamine hydrochloride or glucosamine sulfate complex salt?
In terms of free-base glucosamine (C6H13NO5) content, Glucosamine Hydrochloride (83.1%) has higher content than Glucosamine Sulfate Sodium Chloride (62.5%) and Glucosamine Sulfate Potassium Chloride (59.2%). Many studies have shown that the only biologically active substance among various glucosamine compounds is free-base glucosamine. (Block JA. et al., 2010)
Glucosamine sulfate has more clinical effectiveness studies than Glucosamine Hydrochloride. However. in 2006, the European Medicines Agency (EMA) published an Assessment Report on Glucomed625 mg glucosamine hydrochloride , which concluded that there was a favorable risk/benefit ratio for the glucosamine hydrochloride product, on the basis of submitted literature on glucosamine sulfate, as the formulations are not considered to be different in terms of safety or efficacy. Therefore, it can be considered that a precedent was set whereby clinical data for glucosamine sulfate are also applicable to the evaluation of glucosamine hydrochloride. (Bertin P. et al., 2014)
At present, more and more countries in the EU have updated the active ingredient of the marketed glucosamine sulfate & glucosamine hydrochloride medicines to more scientific free-base glucosamine.