Scientific Publications

ILSI Europe disseminates science by publishing articles on original research, literature reviews and gap analyses, and meeting proceedings in peer-reviewed journals.  ILSI Europe also publishes books, monographs, white papers, and other reports.

All Publications

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Prebiotics Task Force

GUT MICROBIOME AND HEALTH

Together with proteins and fats, carbohydrates are one of the macronutrients in the human diet. Digestible carbohydrates, such as starch, starch-based products, sucrose, lactose, glucose and some sugar alcohols and unusual (and fairly rare) α-linked glucans, directly provide us with energy while other carbohydrates including high molecular weight polysaccharides, mainly from plant cell walls, provide us with dietary fibre. Carbohydrates which are efficiently digested in the small intestine are not available in appreciable quantities to act as substrates for gut bacteria. Some oligo- and polysaccharides, many of which are also dietary fibres, are resistant to digestion in the small intestines and enter the colon where they provide substrates for the complex bacterial ecosystem that resides there. This review will focus on these non-digestible carbohydrates (NDC) and examine their impact on the gut microbiota and their physiological impact. Of particular focus will be the potential of non-digestible carbohydrates to act as prebiotics, but the review will also evaluate direct effects of NDC on human cells and systems

Keywords Expand

Prebiotics, short-chain fatty acids (SCFA), non-digestible carbohydrates

To download this open-access article, please click here.

This work was commissioned by the Prebiotics Task Force.

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Prebiotics

Probiotics

GUT MICROBIOME AND HEALTH

Humans often show variable responses to dietary, prebiotic, and probiotic interventions. Emerging evidence indicates that the gut microbiota is a key determinant for this population heterogeneity. Here, we provide an overview of some of the major computational and experimental tools being applied to critical questions of microbiota-mediated personalized nutrition and health. First, we discuss the latest advances in in silico modeling of the microbiota-nutrition-health axis, including the application of statistical, mechanistic, and hybrid artificial intelligence models. Second, we address high-throughput in vitro techniques for assessing inter-individual heterogeneity, from ex vivo batch culturing of stool and continuous culturing in anaerobic bioreactors, to more sophisticated organ-on-a-chip models that integrate both host and microbial compartments. Third, we explore in vivo approaches for better understanding personalized, microbiota-mediated responses to diet, prebiotics, and probiotics, from non-human animal models and human observational studies, to human feeding trials and crossover interventions. We highlight examples of existing, consumer-facing precision nutrition platforms that are currently leveraging the gut microbiota. Furthermore, we discuss how the integration of a broader set of the tools and techniques described in this piece can generate the data necessary to support a greater diversity of precision nutrition strategies. Finally, we present a vision of a precision nutrition and healthcare future, which leverages the gut microbiota to design effective, individual-specific interventions.

Keywords Expand

prebiotic, probiotic, diet, microbiome, microbiota, personalized nutrition, personalized healthcare, precision nutrition, precision healthcare

Issue Section: Perspective

To download this open-access article, please click here.

This work was commissioned by the Prebiotics and Probiotics Task Forces.

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Nutrient Intake Optimisation

Adequate iodine intake is essential throughout life. Key dietary sources are iodized salt and animal products, but dietary patterns in Europe are changing, for example toward lower salt intake and a more plant-based diet.

The objective of this systematic review was to review iodine intake (not status) in European populations (adults, children, and pregnant women) to identify at-risk groups and dietary sources. In total, 57 studies were included, comprising 22 national surveys and 35 sub-national studies. Iodine intake data were available from national surveys of children aged <10 years (n = 11), 11-17 years (n = 12), and adults (n = 15), but data from pregnancy were only available from sub-national studies.

We show that iodine intake data are lacking-only 17 of 45 (38%) European countries had iodine-intake data from national surveys. Iodine intake reported from national surveys was below recommendations for: (1) children aged <10 years in 2 surveys (18%), (2) boys and girls aged 11-17 years in 6 (50%) and 8 (68%) surveys, respectively, and (3) adult men and women in 7 (47%) and 12 (80%) surveys, respectively. In pregnant women, intake was below recommendations except where women were taking iodine-containing supplements. Just 32% of national surveys (n = 7) included iodized salt when estimating iodine intake. Milk, dairy products, fish, and eggs were important contributors to intake in many countries, suggesting limited sources in plant-based diets.

Results are limited by the challenges of dietary assessment for measuring iodine intake. Future national surveys should include iodine intake. Policy makers should consider dietary sources alongside any iodized salt policies when considering methods for improving population iodine intake.

Keywords Expand

Adults, children, diet, Europe, fish, iodized, iodine, intake, milk, pregnancy

To download this open-access article, please click here.

This work was commissioned by the Nutrient Intake Optimisation Task Force.
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Citation: https://doi.org/10.5281/zenodo.6651934

Allergen cross-contact and unintended allergen presence (UAP) are a significant challenge for food operators.

The aim of this document is to translate the findings of the Expert Group on 'Food Allergen Quantitative Risk Assessment (QRA)' into a Guidance document which provides tools and approaches to help harmonize the data gathering process for food allergen risk assessments and therefore aid with their implementation. This Guidance aims to promote consistency in documentation, decision making and the application of allergen QRA.

The purpose of this Guidance is not to take an allergen labelling or risk management decision for the user, but rather is intended to help them decide when allergen QRA is appropriate or necessary, and how to decide if it can actually be performed and, if it is to be undertaken, what is the most suitable methodology.

The intended audience is mainly industry wishing to understand and conduct food allergen risk assessments, and potentially QRA. However, it should be noted, that this guide could also be useful for others, including official control agencies.

Watch the webinar here.

ILSI Europe Guidance Report Series: download here.

Tools and documents developed for use with the Guidance

  • Cross-contact / Contamination estimate calculator: A practical calculator to estimate the UAP in a product can be found here. This tool was initially developed by the EU project iFAAM and is kindly provided by TNO. It can be used for free after initial registration.
  • QRA calculation worksheet v4.4: download here.
  • Incidents form: For download here. See Chapter 4 of the Guidance for more information.
  • Sampling & Analysis form: download here.

Training videos for this Guidance

  • Management of Operations: to be published soon
  • Incidents: to be published soon

For more information about the Food Allergy Task Force click here.

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Obesity and Diabetes

Nutrition Security and Societal Aspects

Background: The gold-standard techniques for measuring insulin sensitivity and secretion are well established. However, they may be perceived as invasive and expensive for use in dietary intervention studies. Thus, surrogate markers have been proposed as alternative markers for insulin sensitivity and secretion. This systematic review aimed to identify markers of insulin sensitivity and secretion in response to dietary intervention and assess their suitability as surrogates for the gold-standard methodology. Methods: Three databases, PubMed, Scopus, and Cochrane were searched, intervention studies and randomised controlled trials reporting data on dietary intake, a gold standard of analysis of insulin sensitivity (either euglycaemic-hyperinsulinaemic clamp or intravenous glucose tolerance test and secretion (acute insulin response to glucose), as well as surrogate markers for insulin sensitivity (either fasting insulin, area under the curve oral glucose tolerance tests and HOMA-IR) and insulin secretion (disposition index), were selected. Results: We identified thirty-five studies that were eligible for inclusion. We found insufficient evidence to predict insulin sensitivity and secretion with surrogate markers when compared to gold standards in nutritional intervention studies. Conclusions: Future research is needed to investigate if surrogate measures of insulin sensitivity and secretion can be repeatable and reproducible in the same way as gold standards.

Keywords Expand

Insulin Sensitivity; Insulin Secretion; Gold Standard; Surrogate Markers; Dietary Intervention Studies

To download this open-access article, please click here.

This work was commissioned by the Obesity and Diabetes Task Force.

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Prebiotics Task Force

GUT MICROBIOME AND HEALTH

Together with proteins and fats, carbohydrates are one of the macronutrients in the human diet. Digestible carbohydrates, such as starch, starch-based products, sucrose, lactose, glucose and some sugar alcohols and unusual (and fairly rare) α-linked glucans, directly provide us with energy while other carbohydrates including high molecular weight polysaccharides, mainly from plant cell walls, provide us with dietary fibre. Carbohydrates which are efficiently digested in the small intestine are not available in appreciable quantities to act as substrates for gut bacteria. Some oligo- and polysaccharides, many of which are also dietary fibres, are resistant to digestion in the small intestines and enter the colon where they provide substrates for the complex bacterial ecosystem that resides there. This review will focus on these non-digestible carbohydrates (NDC) and examine their impact on the gut microbiota and their physiological impact. Of particular focus will be the potential of non-digestible carbohydrates to act as prebiotics, but the review will also evaluate direct effects of NDC on human cells and systems

Keywords Expand

Prebiotics, short-chain fatty acids (SCFA), non-digestible carbohydrates

To download this open-access article, please click here.

This work was commissioned by the Prebiotics Task Force.

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