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Fernandez A.,European Food Safety Authority | Mills E.N.C.,University of Manchester | Lovik M.,Norwegian Institute of Public Health | Spoek A.,Klagenfurt University | And 3 more authors.
Food and Chemical Toxicology | Year: 2013

Allergenicity assessment of genetically modified (GM) plants is one of the key pillars in the safety assessment process of these products. As part of this evaluation, one of the concerns is to assess that unintended effects (e.g. over-expression of endogenous allergens) relevant for the food safety have not occurred due to the genetic modification. Novel technologies are now available and could be used as complementary and/or alternative methods to those based on human sera for the assessment of endogenous allergenicity. In view of these developments and as a step forward in the allergenicity assessment of GM plants, it is recommended that known endogenous allergens are included in the compositional analysis as additional parameters to be measured. © 2013 Elsevier Ltd.

Tryland M.,Section for Arctic Veterinary Medicine | Nesbakken T.,Section for Food Safety | Robertson L.,Section for Microbiology | Grahek-Ogden D.,Norwegian Scientific Committee for Food Safety | Lunestad B.T.,National Institute of Nutrition And Seafood Research
Zoonoses and Public Health | Year: 2014

Only a few countries worldwide hunt seals and whales commercially. In Norway, hooded and harp seals and minke whales are commercially harvested, and coastal seals (harbour and grey seals) are hunted as game. Marine mammal meat is sold to the public and thus included in general microbiological meat control regulations. Slaughtering and dressing of marine mammals are performed in the open air on deck, and many factors on board sealing or whaling vessels may affect meat quality, such as the ice used for cooling whale meat and the seawater used for cleaning, storage of whale meat in the open air until ambient temperature is reached, and the hygienic conditions of equipment, decks, and other surfaces. Based on existing reports, it appears that meat of seal and whale does not usually represent a microbiological hazard to consumers in Norway, because human disease has not been associated with consumption of such foods. However, as hygienic control on marine mammal meat is ad hoc, mainly based on spot-testing, and addresses very few human pathogens, this conclusion may be premature. Additionally, few data from surveys or systematic quality control screenings have been published. This review examines the occurrence of potential human pathogens in marine mammals, as well as critical points for contamination of meat during the slaughter, dressing, cooling, storage and processing of meat. Some zoonotic agents are of particular relevance as foodborne pathogens, such as Trichinella spp., Toxoplasma gondii, Salmonella and Leptospira spp. In addition, Mycoplasma spp. parapoxvirus and Mycobacterium spp. constitute occupational risks during handling of marine mammals and marine mammal products. Adequate training in hygienic procedures is necessary to minimize the risk of contamination on board, and acquiring further data is essential for obtaining a realistic assessment of the microbiological risk to humans from consuming marine mammal meat. © 2013 Blackwell Verlag GmbH.

Ringo E.,University of Tromso | Olsen R.E.,Norwegian Institute of Marine Research | Gifstad T.,Norwegian Scientific Committee for Food Safety | Dalmo R.A.,University of Tromso | And 3 more authors.
Aquaculture Nutrition | Year: 2010

A prebiotic is a non-digestible food ingredient that beneficially affects the host by selectively stimulating the growth and/or the activity of one or a limited number of bacteria in the colon. Despite the potential benefits to health and performance as noted in various terrestrial animals, the use of prebiotics in the farming of fish and shellfish has been less investigated. The studies of prebiotics in fish and shellfish have investigated the following parameters: effect on growth, feed conversion, gut microbiota, cell damage/morphology, resistance against pathogenic bacteria and innate immune parameters such as alternative complement activity (ACH50), lysozyme activity, natural haemagglutination activity, respiratory burst, superoxide dismutase activity and phagocytic activity. This review discusses the results from these studies and the methods used. If the use of prebiotics leads to health responses becoming more clearly manifested in fish and shellfish, then prebiotics might have the potential to increase the efficiency and sustainability of aquaculture production. However, large gaps of knowledge exist. To fully conclude on the effects of adding prebiotics in fish diets, more research efforts are needed to provide the aquaculture industry, the scientific community, the regulatory bodies and the general public with the necessary information and tools. © 2010 The Authors. Journal compilation © 2010 Blackwell Publishing Ltd.

De Keyzer W.,University College Ghent | Dofkova M.,Food Republic | Lillegaard I.T.L.,Norwegian Scientific Committee for Food Safety | De Maeyer M.,Ghent University | And 13 more authors.
British Journal of Nutrition | Year: 2015

High dietary Na intake is associated with multiple health risks, making accurate assessment of population dietary Na intake critical. In the present study, reporting accuracy of dietary Na intake was evaluated by 24 h urinary Na excretion using the EPIC-Soft 24 h dietary recall (24-HDR). Participants from a subsample of the European Food Consumption Validation study (n 365; countries: Belgium, Norway and Czech Republic), aged 45-65 years, completed two 24 h urine collections and two 24-HDR. Reporting accuracy was calculated as the ratio of reported Na intake to that estimated from the urinary biomarker. A questionnaire on salt use was completed in order to assess the discretionary use of table and cooking salt. The reporting accuracy of dietary Na intake was assessed using two scenarios: (1) a salt adjustment procedure using data from the salt questionnaire; (2) without salt adjustment. Overall, reporting accuracy improved when data from the salt questionnaire were included. The mean reporting accuracy was 0·67 (95% CI 0·62, 0·72), 0·73 (95% CI 0·68, 0·79) and 0·79 (95% CI 0·74, 0·85) for Belgium, Norway and Czech Republic, respectively. Reporting accuracy decreased with increasing BMI among male subjects in all the three countries. For women from Belgium and Norway, reporting accuracy was highest among those classified as obese (BMI ≥ 30 kg/m2: 0·73, 95% CI 0·67, 0·81 and 0·81, 95% CI 0·77, 0·86, respectively). The findings from the present study showed considerable underestimation of dietary Na intake assessed using two 24-HDR. The questionnaire-based salt adjustment procedure improved reporting accuracy by 7-13%. Further development of both the questionnaire and EPIC-Soft databases (e.g. inclusion of a facet to describe salt content) is necessary to estimate population dietary Na intakes accurately. © The Authors 2015.

Lillegaard I.T.L.,Norwegian Scientific Committee for Food Safety | Overby N.C.,University of Agder | Andersen L.F.,University of Oslo
Food and Nutrition Research | Year: 2012

Objective: The aim of this study was to evaluate a short food frequency questionnaire (FFQ) against a four-day precoded food diary (PFD) with regard to frequency of food intake among Norwegian 9- and 13-year-olds. Subjects and design: A total of 733 9-year-olds and 904 13-year-olds completed first a short FFQ and one to two weeks later a four-day PFD. The short FFQ included questions about 23 food items, including different drinks, fruits, vegetables, bread, fish, pizza, sweets, chocolate and savoury snacks. The PFD covered the whole diet. Results: When comparing mean intake from the PFD with comparable food items in the FFQ, all food items showed that increasing intake measured with the PFD corresponded with increasing intake with the short FFQ. However, participants reported a significantly higher frequency of intake for most foods with the short FFQ compared with PFD, except for soft drinks with sugar and sweets. The median Spearman correlation coefficient between the two methods was 0.36 among the 9-year-olds and 0.32 among the 13-year-olds. Often eaten foods such as fruits and vegetables had higher correlations than seldom eaten foods such as pizza and potato chips. The median correlation coefficients for drinks alone were higher (r=0.47) for both age groups. Conclusions: Results indicate that the short FFQ was able to identify high and low consumers of food intake and had a moderate capability to rank individuals according to food intake. Drinks, fruits and vegetables had better correlations with the PFD than infrequently eaten food items. © 2012 Inger Therese L. Lillegaard et al.

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