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The human microbiome: The food industry & health insight

April 24, 2018

The microbiome is not limited to the Pharma industry but is also of interest to the Food industry

 

Medium

 

The interest of microbiome is not limited to the scope of the Pharma industry. The Food industry is actively contributing to the research on the microbiome. Indeed, the Food industry holds a significant part in the emerging of microbiome clinical trials. Among the 15 clinical trials mentioning “microbiome” in Europe in 2008, 14 were related to the Food industry. Moreover, 57% of European overall studies related to microbiome from 2000-17 come from the Food industry. For the same period, in the USA the cumulated number of food microbiome trials represents 43% of the total. In both the USA and Europe, microbiome clinical trials related to the Food industry accounts for about 50% of the studies in 2017.

 

The interest of the Food industry in the microbiome relies mostly on the development of probiotics and prebiotics. Probiotics are live bacteria positively acting for health, while prebiotics are molecules that selectively favor some commensal bacteria, enhancing their growth. Moreover, clinical trials investigate the role of different diets like the Western diet, Mediterranean diets, vegan diets, or gluten free diets on the microbiome. However, since the reinforcement of the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) regulation on health claims in 2012, the number of food clinical studies is stagnating. Yet some Food companies such as PiLeJe are developing their products as a drug and therefore follow the same path as Pharma companies with clinical studies to prove the efficiency and safety of their products.

 

 

Conclusion

 

Pharma and food industry interest on Microbiome and human health is booming. The common objective is to understand how to preserve and/or to modulate our precious microbial ecosystems to maintain or improve Human health. In Europe, the major challenges for the food industry are the regulatory hurdles. One strategy is to develop their products as a drug.  

Besides human health, another microbiome research area is emerging in the food industry, which is the food quality in the production plant. How to control the microbial ecosystems in food production to optimize sensory flavor of the products better? How to control spoilage bacteria? The Researchers in the food industry need to better understand the relationship between shelf-life and microbial behavior. Advanced technologies such as the uses of phages or antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) are studied to target specific bacteria to prevent undesirable bacterial colonization (biopreservation).

In the future, pharma and food industries might cross-fertilize their microbiome discoveries and work together for standardization methodologies for a better understanding of microbiome ecosystems and functionalities.

 

 

Marc-Olivier Bévierre (Cepton Strategies), Etienne Casal (Biofortis – Mérieux NutriSciences), Murielle Cazaubiel (Biofortis – Mérieux NutriSciences), Françoise Le Vacon (Biofortis – Mérieux NutriSciences), Charles Savoie (Cepton Strategies), Alessandra De Martino (Biofortis – Mérieux NutriSciences)

 

 

Cepton Strategies :

Our expertise: Pharmaceuticals & Biotechnology, Medtech & Diagnostics, Healthcare Services, Infrastructures, Automobile & Process Industries

CEPTON is a strategy consulting boutique operating on a global scale. From strategy consulting to complex transactions, we focus on a limited number of industries facilitating a reliable and comprehensive service to develop your business. We provide innovative solutions to match these constantly evolving markets and can facilitate your expansion to new markets.

Regardless of the nature of our collaboration, our value remains the same: specialised industry experience, confidentiality, and flexibility throughout assignments.

http://www.ceptonstrategies.com/

 

Biofortis – Mérieux NutriSciences :

As part of Mérieux NutriSciences, Biofortis supports the food and health industries by conducting research projects with a unique nutrition and analytical service. A one-stop shop CRO offering innovative services including clinical assessments and microbiota-related research for Pharma, Biotech and Food industries. Over the last 15 years, Biofortis has developed a unique and extended expertise in the Microbiome area, enjoying a very strong market recognition.

https://www.merieuxnutrisciences.com/fr/en/biofortis-innovation-services

 

References:

 

1 – Human Microbiome Project website

2 - Kumar A, Chordia N (2017) Role of Microbes in Human Health. Appli Microbiol Open Access 3:131. doi:10.4172/2471-9315.1000131

3 - Clinicaltrials.gov as of January 2018

4 - Chinese Clinical Trial Registry as of January 2018

5 - PubMed as of January 2018

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