ILSI Southeast Asia Region
Bringing you bi-monthly news and information on nutrition, food safety and sustainability issues relevant to our region

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Trust your Gut: How Gut Microbiota Affects Overall Health  
May 17, 2018, Pan Pacific Manila Hotel, Manila, Philippines

This half-day seminar organized by ILSI SEA Region Philippines Country Committee will present new findings in the field of Gut Health in relation to health and disease. Invited speakers will  discuss the importance of Gut Microbiota across the life span and how healthy gut microbiota can prevent the development of disease. Ways to optimize gut health through nutrition will also be discussed.

Registration is still OPEN! Click HERE to register!
Visit the ILSI SEA Region website HERE for more information.

The Gut Microbiome: Markers of Human Health, Drug Efficacy and Xenobiotic Toxicity
June 25-26, 2018, Alexandria, Virginia, USA

The ILSI Health and Environmental Sciences Institute (HESI) Microbiome Subcommittee is proud to announce the upcoming two-day workshop 'The Gut Microbiome: Markers of Human Health, Drug Efficacy and Xenobiotic Toxicity', to address the state of the science and data gaps in gut microbiome research. The workshop will focus on current science on the gut microbiome and identification of areas of interest regarding its role in human health, and our understanding of how xenobiotic toxicity affects the microbiome. Biomarkers of disease or organ damage due to alterations of microbiome structure or endogenous microbial metabolites will also be discussed.  

Registration is NOW OPEN! Visit the HESI website HERE for more information and to register.  


Human Health Partners: Microbiome and Health

The human microbiome and its impact on health has been an active area of intense research in the last decades. It is increasingly acknowledged that the influence of the gut microbiome is dynamic and extensive, affecting multiple system functions and host health. We are just beginning to understand their potential in mitigating disease and promoting health. 

In conjunction with their 2018 Annual Meeting, ILSI Taiwan held a one-day scientific symposium 'Human Health Partners: Microbiome and Health' on April 27, 2018 at National Taiwan University, Taipei. The symposium program was comprehensive, covering the subject matter from basic to advanced, from research to applications and from local to the international perspective. A slate of international and local speakers presented the latest research and insights into the gut microbiome and human health, including Dr. Yuan Kun Lee, National University of Singapore, with his presentation 'Human Gut Microbes, Sharing our Diet, Determine our Health and Diseases'. 

The symposium, organized in collaboration with the Graduate Institute of Food Science and Technology, National Taiwan University (NTU); Taiwan Association for Lactic Acid Bacteria; Food Industry Research and Development Institute; and the Taiwan Association for Food Science and Technology, was well attended by over 200 participants. More information on the symposium can be found HERE.   

Microbial Metabolism Associated with Health

The diverse microbial community that inhabits the human gut is involved in the metabolism of food and the bio-availability of a large number of nutrients and non-nutrients. As such, the gut microbiota is a key factor in shaping the biochemical profile of the diet. Moreover, the gut microbiota has an extensive metabolic repertoire that complements the activity of mammalian enzymes in the liver and gut mucosa and includes functions essential for host digestion. Consequently, microbial metabolism is an important variable to take into account when considering the management of host health and  conditions like obesity, inflammation and the metabolic syndrome. A webinar on ‘Microbial Metabolism Associated with Health’ jointly organized by ILSI Europe’s Prebiotics and Functional Foods Task Forces and the International Scientific Association for Probiotics and Prebiotics (ISAPP), was held on April 12, 2018. The Effects of the Intestinal Microbiota on Selected Dietary Components was presented by Prof. Collette Shortt, Johnson & Johnson/Prof. Ian Rowland, University of Reading, UK, and Prof. Robert Hutkins, University of Nebraska, US, discussed the Health Benefits of Fermented Foods: Microbiota and Beyond.

New Advances: Diet and Gut Microbiome

At the 2018 ILSI Annual Meeting held in Southampton, Bermuda, ILSI North America organized a scientific session on January 22 titled 'New Advances: Diet and Gut Microbiome', examining the latest science on the diet and microbiome, including advances on application and intervention for appetite and eating behavior, as well as new research on infant and fetal microbiome. The 'State of Science on Microbiota, Diet & Dietary Patterns' was presented by Dr. Gary Wu, University of Pennsylvania, USA. This was followed by case examples of applications and interventions, including 'A Gut Feeling About the Brain: Diet, Microbiome & Behavior' by Dr. John Cryan, University College Cork, UK, and 'Shaping the Gut Microbiome During Infancy' by Dr. Anita Kozyrskyj, University of Alberta, Canada. The session concluded with Dr. Cindy Davis, National Institutes of Health, USA, presenting the results of a 'Workshop on Best Practices in Studies of Diet and the Intestinal Microbiome' that was held in 2017. Presentations from the session are available HERE


Relationship Between the Gut Microbiome and Brain Function

Mohajeri MH, La Fata G, Steinert RE, Weber P. Nutr Rev. 2018 Apr 26. doi: 10.1093/nutrit/nuy009

It has become increasingly evident in recent years that the gut microbiome and the brain communicate in a bidirectional manner, with each possibly affecting the other’s functions. Substantial research has aimed to understand the mechanisms of this interaction and to outline strategies for preventing or treating nervous system-related disturbances. This review explores the evidence demonstrating how the gut microbiome may affect brain function in adults, thereby having an impact on stress, anxiety, depression, and cognition. In vitro, in vivo, and human studies reporting an association between a change in the gut microbiome and functional changes in the brain are highlighted, as are studies outlining the mechanisms by which the brain affects the microbiome and the gastrointestinal tract. Possible modes of action to explain how the gut microbiome and the brain functionally affect each other are proposed. Supplemental probiotics to combat brain-related dysfunction offer a promising approach, provided future research elucidates their mode of action and possible side effects. Further studies are warranted to establish how pre- and probiotic interventions may help to balance brain function in healthy and diseased individuals. Link to full article HERE.


ILSI Southeast Asia Region conference proceedings: The gut, its microbes and health: relevance for Asia

The human being is a complex entity, involving interaction between microbes and the human host. Evidence shows that the nutritional value of food is influenced in part by the structure and operations of an individual’s gut microbial community, and food in turn shapes the individual’s microbiome. A conference was held to promote understanding of the intestinal microbiome and its implications for health and disease, particularly among Asian populations. Papers describing 1) the intestinal ecosystem in Asian populations, 2) changes in intestinal microbiota through life and its effects, 3) the Asian gut microbiota in disease conditions, 4) indigenous probiotics to maintain a healthy gut microbiota, 5) probiotic regulation in an Asian country, and 6) the results of a panel discussion are included in this report. This report also concluded that the gut microbial inhabitants of Asian people differ from those of Europe and North America. Geographic location, diet, and ethnic background influence intestinal microbial composition. Urbanization and economic development have brought changes in traditional Asian diets, which in turn affected the gut microbiome, contributing to a shift in the region’s health burden from infectious diseases to non-communicable chronic diseases. Novel probiotic strains of Indonesian origin demonstrated significant enhancement of humoral immune response in human studies. Knowledge gaps and implications for research to further understand the Asian gut microbiome were discussed. The conference proceedings, published in the Asia Pacific Journal of Clinical Nutrition, can be accessed through the link HERE.


May 17, 2018
Seminar: Trust Your Gut - How Gut Microbiota Affects Overall Health   
Manila, Philippines

July 2018
Seminar on Risk Assessment of Food Additives    
Manila, Philippines

August 28-30, 2018
10th Seminar and Workshop on Nutrition Labeling, Claims & Communication Strategies
Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia


September 3-7, 2018
National Training Course on Food Composition Database ASEAN
Naypyidaw, Myanmar 

September 2018
Seminar on Nutrition and Life Course Approach to Healthy Aging

Manila, Philippines 

October 2018
Regional Symposium and Workshop on Food Consumption and Nutrient Intake in ASEAN 


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ILSI Southeast Asia Region · 18 Mohamed Sultan Road Singapore · #03-01 · Singapore 238967 · Singapore

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