Palaiseau, France
Palaiseau, France

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Agency: Cordis | Branch: FP7 | Program: CP-IP | Phase: HEALTH.2012.2.1.2-2 | Award Amount: 23.12M | Year: 2012

METACARDIS applies a systems medicine multilevel approach to identify biological relationships between gut microbiota, assessed by metagenomics, and host genome expression regulation, which will improve understanding and innovative care of cardiometabolic diseases (CMD) and their comorbidities. CMD comprise metabolic (obesity, diabetes) and heart diseases characterized by a chronic evolution in ageing populations and costly treatments. Therapies require novel integrated approaches taking into account CMD natural evolution. METACARDIS associates European leaders in metagenomics, who have been successful in establishing the structure of the human microbiome as part of the EU FP7 MetaHIT consortium, clinical and fundamental researchers, SME, patients associations and food companies to improve the understanding of pathophysiological mechanisms, prognosis and diagnosis of CMD. We will use next-generation sequencing technologies and high throughput metabolomic platforms to identify gut microbiota- and metabolomic-derived biomarkers and targets associated with CMD risks. The pathophysiological role of these markers will be tested in both preclinical models and replication cohorts allowing the study of CMD progression in patients collected in three European clinical centres of excellence. Their impact on host gene transcription will be characterised in patients selected for typical features of CMD evolution. Application of computational models and visualisation tools to complex datasets combining clinical information, environmental patterns and gut microbiome, metabolome and transcriptome data is a central integrating component in the research, which will be driven by world leaders in metagenomic and functional genomic data analysis. These studies will identify novel molecular targets, biomarkers and predictors of CMD progression, paving the way for personalized medicine in CMD.

Agency: Cordis | Branch: FP7 | Program: CP-IP | Phase: HEALTH-2007-2.1.1-4 | Award Amount: 21.36M | Year: 2008

A detailed understanding of human biology will require not only knowledge of the human genome but also of the human metagenome, defined here as the ensemble of the genomes of human-associated microorganisms. Our proposal focuses on the microorganisms of the gut, which are particularly abundant and complex and have an important role for human health and well-being. We shall implement and integrate the following activities: (i) creation of a reference set of genes and genomes of intestinal microbes, using high fidelity metagenomic sequencing and full genome sequencing of selected bacterial species; (ii) creation of the generic tools, based on the high density DNA arrays and novel ultra-high throughput re-sequencing techniques, to study the variation of human gut microbiota; (iii) use of the tools to search for correlations between the genes present in the gut microbiota and disease, focusing on the inflammatory bowel disease and obesity, the two pathologies of increasing social relevance in Europe; (iv) study of the genes correlated with the disease, both in terms of their function in microbes and their effect on the host, with the focus on host-microbe interactions; (v) development of an informatics resource to store and organize the heterogeneous information generated within the project, such as gene and genome sequences, gene frequencies in healthy and sick individuals or gene functions and also enriched by information relevant to human gut microbiota from the outside of the project; (vi) creation of the bioinformatics tools to carry out the meta-analysis of the information; (vii) creation of an interface with the stakeholders, including an international board to promote cooperation and coordination in the human metagenome field, and general public. Our project will place Europe in a leading position in this field and open avenues to modulate human gut microbiota in a reasoned way, enabling to optimize the health and wellbeing of any individual.

Poston L.,King's College London | Harthoorn L.F.,Mead Johnson Nutrition Company | Van Der Beek E.M.,Danone Research
Pediatric Research | Year: 2011

Obesity among pregnant women is becoming one of the most important women's health issues. Obesity is associated with increased risk of almost all pregnancy complications: gestational hypertension, preeclampsia, gestational diabetes mellitus, delivery of large-for-GA infants, and higher incidence of congenital defects all occur more frequently than in women with a normal BMI. Evidence shows that a child of an obese mother may suffer from exposure to a suboptimal in utero environment and that early life adversities may extend into adulthood. In September 2009, ILSI Europe convened a workshop with multidisciplinary expertise to review practices and science base of health and nutrition of obese pregnant women, with focus on the long-term health of the child. The consensus viewpoint of the workshop identified gaps and gave recommendations for future research on gestational weight gain, gestational diabetes, and research methodologies. The evidence available on short-and longterm health impact for mother and child currently favors actions directed at controlling prepregnancy weight and preventing obesity in women of reproductive ages. More randomized controlled trials are needed to evaluate the effects of nutritional and behavioral interventions in pregnancy outcomes. Moreover, suggestions that maternal obesity may transfer obesity risk to child through non-Mendelian (e.g. epigenetic) mechanisms require more longterm investigation. Copyright © 2011 International Pediatric Research Foundation, Inc.

Agency: Cordis | Branch: FP7 | Program: MC-IAPP | Phase: FP7-PEOPLE-IAPP-2008 | Award Amount: 454.57K | Year: 2009

It is now well-established that consuming fruits and vegetables promotes health and well-being. In particular, intake of fruits and vegetables protects against cancer and is associated with lower levels of obesity. Consumption of a diet rich in fruits and vegetables is predicted by the extent to which these foods are liked. However, vegetable intakes remain relatively low, especially in children. Establishing preference for vegetables early in a childs development provides the best opportunity to enhance intake and to promote preferences which will last throughout life. Most children in Europe fail to consume recommended 5 per day portions of fruits and vegetables and many fail to meet minimum recommendations to eat just one portion of vegetables each day. Therefore, this proposal has three main aims: to compare different methods of introducing complimentary foods in member states which best predict liking of vegetables in the first year of life; to develop and test an optimal weaning strategy to promote vegetable acceptance in infants; and to increase liking and intake of vegetables in children aged 4-5 years using flavour-flavour and flavour-consequence learning. The main outcomes of this research programme are the development of a weaning strategy with an emphasis on early and sustained exposure to vegetable flavours; identification and development of new products to facilitate liking for vegetables and preparing an evidence-base for enhancing intake of vegetables in school age children.

Decsi T.,University of Pécs | Boehm G.,Danone Research | Boehm G.,Erasmus University Rotterdam
American Journal of Clinical Nutrition | Year: 2013

We summarize data on the potential interaction of trans isomeric fatty acids [trans fatty acids (TFAs)] with the availability of longchain polyunsaturated fatty acids (LC-PUFAs) in the perinatal period. Today, TFA intakes in pregnant and lactating women can be estimated to be ∼1% of energy in the majority of the population. The significant inverse associations seen between TFAs and LC-PUFAs in pregnant women in 3 different European populations investigated in a recent study raise doubts about the nutritional adequacy of high TFA intakes during pregnancy. In a recent study on the TFA content of human milk in a sizable group of mothers at the sixth week of lactation, both arachidonic and docosahexaenoic acids correlated significantly inversely to 18-carbon TFAs but not to 16-carbon TFAs, and at the sixth month of lactation arachidonic acid correlated significantly inversely to 18-carbon TFAs but not to 16-carbon TFAs. Similarly, significant inverse correlations were seen between 18-carbon TFAs and arachidonic and docosahexaenoic acids in both artery and vein wall lipids in a sizable group of healthy term infants. The TFA data obtained in umbilical blood vessel wall lipids were related to the neurologic condition of healthy children at 18 mo of age: children with minimal neurologic dysfunction at age 18 mo had significantly higher cord blood vein wall trans octadecadienoic acid values than did neurologically normal children. Total TFA values as well as total 18-carbon TFA values in umbilical vein wall lipids were significantly inversely associated with neurologic optimality score. Contradictory data renders it impossible to draw firm conclusions on the role of TFAs in modifying fetal growth; however, TFA exposure may be a confounding parameter in studies that investigate the relation between fetal fatty acid supply and intrauterine growth. © 2013 American Society for Nutrition.

Kamphuis P.J.G.H.,Danone Research | Scheltens P.,VU University Amsterdam
Journal of Alzheimer's Disease | Year: 2010

Age-related changes in nutritional status can play an important role in brain functioning. Specific nutrient deficiencies in the elderly, including omega-3 fatty acids, B-vitamins, and antioxidants among others, may exacerbate pathological processes in the brain. Consequently, the potential of nutritional intervention to prevent or delay cognitive impairment and the development of Alzheimer's disease (AD) is a topic of growing scientific interest. This review summarizes epidemiological studies linking specific nutritional deficiencies to mild cognitive impairment (MCI), as well as completed and ongoing nutritional studies in prevention of MCI and AD. Processes that underlie AD pathogenesis include: membrane/synaptic degeneration, abnormal protein processing (amyloid-β, tau), vascular risk factors (hypertension, hypercholesterolemia), inflammation, and oxidative stress. Consideration of mechanistic evidence to date suggests that several nutritional components can effectively counteract these processes, e.g., by promoting membrane formation and synaptogenesis, enhancing memory/behavior, improving endothelial function, and cerebrovascular health. The literature reinforces the need for early intervention in AD and suggests that multi-nutritional intervention, targeting multiple aspects of the neurodegenerative process during the earliest possible phase in the development of the disease, is likely to have the greatest therapeutic potential. © 2010 - IOS Press and the authors.

Perrier E.,Danone Research
The British journal of nutrition | Year: 2013

Little is known about the impact of habitual fluid intake on physiology. Specifically, biomarkers of hydration status and body water regulation have not been adequately explored in adults who consume different fluid volumes in everyday conditions, without prolonged exercise or environmental exposure. The purpose of the present study was to compare adults with habitually different fluid intakes with respect to biomarkers implicated in the assessment of hydration status, the regulation of total body water and the risk of kidney pathologies. In the present cross-sectional study, seventy-one adults (thirty-two men, thirty-nine women, age 25-40 years) were classified according to daily fluid intake: thirty-nine low drinkers (LD; ≤ 1·2 litres/d) and thirty-two high drinkers (HD; 2-4 litres/d). During four consecutive days, urinary parameters (first morning urine (FMU) on day 1 and subsequent 24 h urine (24hU) collections), blood parameters, and food and beverage intake were assessed. ANOVA and non-parametric comparisons revealed significant differences between the LD and HD groups in 24hU volume (1·0 (se 0·1) v. 2·4 (se 0·1) litres), specific gravity (median 1·023 v. 1·010), osmolality (767 (se 27) v. 371 (se 33) mOsm/kg) and colour (3·1 (se 0·2) v. 1·8 (se 0·2)). Similarly, in the FMU, the LD group produced a smaller amount of more concentrated urine. Plasma cortisol, creatinine and arginine vasopressin concentrations were significantly higher among the LD. Plasma osmolality was similar between the groups, suggesting physiological adaptations to preserve plasma osmolality despite low fluid intake. The long-term impact of adaptations to preserve plasma osmolality must be examined, particularly in the context of renal health.

Choline is an important component of the human diet and is required for the endogenous synthesis of choline-containing phospholipids, acetylcholine and betaine. Choline can also be synthesised de novo by the sequential methylation of phosphatidylethanolamine to phosphatidylcholine. Vitamins B6, B12 and folate can enhance methylation capacity and therefore could influence choline availability not only by increasing endogenous choline synthesis but also by reducing choline utilisation. In the present experiment, we determined whether combined supplementation of these B vitamins affects plasma choline concentration in a rat model of mild B vitamin deficiency which shows moderate increases in plasma homocysteine. To this end, we measured plasma choline and homocysteine concentrations in rats that had consumed a B vitamin-poor diet for 4 weeks after which they were either continued on the B vitamin-poor diet or switched to a B vitamin-enriched diet for another 4 weeks. Both diets contained recommended amounts of choline. Rats receiving the B vitamin-enriched diet showed higher plasma choline and lower plasma homocysteine concentrations as compared to rats that were continued on the B vitamin-poor diet. These data underline the interdependence between dietary B vitamins and plasma choline concentration, possibly via the combined effects of the three B vitamins on methylation capacity.

Vergne S.,Danone Research
Nutrition Today | Year: 2012

Assessing the fluid intake level of different populations has, to date, attracted very little interest. The comparison of existing data based on food surveys reveals notable differences between countries and within different surveys in 1 country. Methodological issues seem to account to a large extent for these differences. Recent studies conducted using specifically designed diaries to record fluid and water intake over a 7-day period tend to give more accurate results. These recent studies could potentially lead to the revision of the values of adequate intakes of water in numerous countries. © 2012 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins.

Antoine J.M.,Danone Research
Proceedings of the Nutrition Society | Year: 2010

Probiotics, defined as living micro-organisms that provide a health benefit to the host when ingested in adequate amounts, have been used traditionally as food components to help the body to recover from diarrhoea. They are commonly ingested as part of fermented foods, mostly in fresh fermented dairy products. They can interact with the host through different components of the gut defence systems. There is mounting clinical evidence that some probiotics, but not all, help the defence of the host as demonstrated by either a shorter duration of infections or a decrease in the host's susceptibility to pathogens. Different components of the gut barrier can be involved in the strengthening of the body's defences: the gut microbiota, the gut epithelial barrier and the immune system. Many studies have been conducted in normal free-living subjects or in subjects during common infections like the common cold and show that some probiotic-containing foods can improve the functioning of or strengthen the body's defence. Specific probiotic foods can be included in the usual balanced diet of consumers to help them to better cope with the daily challenges of their environment. Copyright © 2010 The Authors.

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