Staff Publications

Staff Publications

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    'Staff publications' is the digital repository of Wageningen University & Research

    'Staff publications' contains references to publications authored by Wageningen University staff from 1976 onward.

    Publications authored by the staff of the Research Institutes are available from 1995 onwards.

    Full text documents are added when available. The database is updated daily and currently holds about 240,000 items, of which 72,000 in open access.

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    Sustainable seafood - Do consumers matter?
    Bush, S.R. - \ 2018
    Wageningen : WURcast
    farmed fish - fish - fish consumption - consumer behaviour
    Nearly 80% of all seafood sold in supermarkets is labelled as sustainable. Have you ever stopped to think why? The conventional view is that consumer choices drive market-led change. But behind these labels is a range of organisations and initiatives actively shaping political forms of consumerism for you. What is the effect they will have on seafood sustainability in the future?
    Persistent organic pollutants : aberrant DNA methylation underlying potential health effects
    Dungen, M.W. van den - \ 2016
    Wageningen University. Promotor(en): Tinka Murk; Ellen Kampman, co-promotor(en): Wilma Steegenga; Dieuwertje van Gils-Kok. - Wageningen : Wageningen University - ISBN 9789462577893 - 207
    persistent organic pollutants - dna methylation - molecular genetics - epigenetics - health hazards - toxic substances - endocrine disruptors - eels - fish consumption - toxicology - persistente organische verontreinigende stoffen - dna-methylering - moleculaire genetica - epigenetica - gezondheidsgevaren - toxische stoffen - hormoonverstoorders - palingen - visconsumptie - toxicologie

    Wild caught fish, especially marine fish, can contain high levels of persistent organic pollutants (POPs). In the Netherlands, especially eel from the main rivers have high POP levels. This led to a ban in 2011 on eel fishing due to health concerns. Many of the marine POPs have been related to adverse health effects such as endocrine disruption, neurodevelopmental problems, immune suppression and cancer. Although some mechanisms of action of POPs are clear, like dioxins binding to the aryl hydrocarbon receptor and OH-PCBs binding to thyroid transport proteins, not all adverse health effects can be explained by these mechanisms of action. Epigenetic phenomena, such as DNA methylation, have been proposed as a possible molecular mechanism underlying adverse health effects. DNA methylation is a heritable modification, which refers to the addition of a methyl group to cytosine in a CpG dinucleotide. Observational studies have indeed shown that POPs can affect global DNA methylation, although results are inconsistent. Some animal studies as well as in vitro experiments suggest that POPs can affect gene-specific DNA methylation, however, the biological significance and relevance for humans is not clear. Therefore, this thesis aimed to 1) study the accumulation of POPs in men consuming eel from high-polluted areas 2) elucidate whether seafood-related POPs can induce aberrant DNA methylation and 3) to determine whether DNA methylation is related to functional endpoints and gene expression in vitro.

    For this purpose eight POPs that are abundantly present in seafood were chosen, namely 2,3,7,8-tetrachlorodibenzo-p-dioxin (TCDD), polychlorobiphenyl (PCB) 126 and 153, perfluorooctanesulfonic acid (PFOS), hexabromocyclododecane (HBCD), 2,2′,4,4′- tetrabromodiphenyl ether (BDE-47), tributyltin (TBT), and methylmercury (MeHg). Chapter 2 describes the in vitro effects of these POPs and mixtures thereof in H295R adrenocortical carcinoma cells. Relative responses for 13 steroid hormones and 7 genes involved in the steroidogenic pathway, and CYP1A1, were analysed. PFOS induced the most pronounced effects on steroid hormone levels by significantly affecting 9 out of 13 hormone levels measured, with the largest increases found for 17β-estradiol, corticosterone, and cortisol. Furthermore, TCDD, both PCBs, and TBT significantly altered steroidogenesis. Increased steroid hormone levels were accompanied by related increased gene expression levels. The differently expressed genes were MC2R, CYP11B1, CYP11B2, and CYP19A1 and changes in gene expression levels were more sensitive than changes in hormone levels. The POP mixtures tested showed mostly additive effects, especially for DHEA and 17β-estradiol levels. This study shows that some seafood POPs are capable of altering steroidogenesis in H295R cells at concentrations that mixtures might reach in human blood, suggesting that adverse health effects cannot be excluded. DNA methylation was not measured in this study due to the short exposure time, which was expected not to be sufficient for long-term epigenetic marks. Therefore, in chapters 3A and 3B a differentiation experiment was performed enabling long-term exposure to POPs. Human mesenchymal stem cells (hMSCs) were differentiated into mature adipocytes over a time-course of 10 days. The transcriptional regulatory cascade involved in adipocyte differentiation has been extensively studied, however the mechanisms driving the transcription are poorly understood. In chapter 3A we therefore first explored the involvement of DNA methylation in transcriptional regulation during adipocyte differentiation. Genome-wide changes in DNA methylation were measured as well as the expression of adipogenic genes. The majority of these genes showed significant expression changes during the differentiation process. There were, however, only a couple of these differentially expressed genes that were differentially methylated. Genome-wide DNA methylation changes were most often located in intergenic regions, and underrepresented close to the transcription start site. This suggested that changes in DNA methylation are not the underlying mechanism regulating gene expression during adipocyte differentiation. Nevertheless, we explored DNA methylation differences after continuous exposure to POPs to investigate whether this could be an underlying mechanism by which POPs affect adipocyte differentiation. TCDD and PFOS decreased lipid accumulation, while TBT increased lipid accumulation. TCDD and TBT induced opposite gene expression profiles, whereas after PFOS exposure gene expression remained relatively stable. Genome-wide DNA methylation analysis showed that all three POPs affected DNA methylation patterns in adipogenic and other genes, but without concomitant gene expression changes. Differential methylation was again predominantly detected in intergenic regions, where the biological relevance of alterations in DNA methylation is unclear. This study demonstrated that POPs, at environmentally relevant levels, are able to induce differential DNA methylation in differentiating adipocytes. However, the biological relevance of this aberrant DNA methylation remains unclear.

    The in vitro results showed a proof of principle that POPs could be capable of altering DNA methylation. To this date, no human studies were performed investigating the relationship between POP levels and genome-wide DNA methylation. In order to investigate this, we first measured POP levels in eel consumers from the high-polluted areas (areas with a ban on eel fishing) and compared these levels to men consuming eel from low-polluted areas or aquaculture (chapter 4). We aimed to investigate the accumulation of these POPs and determine whether the predictions made in an earlier risk assessment were valid. This was indeed the case as levels of dioxins and dioxin-like compounds were on average 2.5 times higher in men consuming eel from high-polluted areas. Furthermore, PCBs with their hydroxylated metabolites, and perfluoroalkyl substances (PFASs) were, up to ten times, higher in these consumers. Especially the high levels of dioxins and dioxin-like compounds as well as the OH-PCBs are expected to be of health concern. We continued this research in chapter 5 by associating all the measured POPs to clinical parameters related to e.g. thyroid hormones and liver enzymes, but found no relationship. Subsequently, we investigated the association between dioxins and dioxin-like compounds, the sum of seven indicator PCBs, and PFOS with genome-wide DNA methylation. We detected a number of differentially methylated regions (DMRs) related to genes involved in carcinogenesis (e.g. BRCA1, MAGEE2, HOXA5), the immune system (e.g. RNF39, HLA-DQB1), in retinol homeostasis (DHRS4L2), or in metabolism (CYP1A1). In contrast to the in vitro data, most significant effects were detected in CpG islands and were annotated close to the promoter region. This suggests that the differential methylation might be related to differential expression and possibly induce adverse health effects. The hypermethylation of some of these gene related to cancer could be an explanation of the carcinogenic effects that are observed with POP exposure.

    Based on the results of this thesis we can conclude that the consumption of eel from high-polluted areas lead to accumulation of POPs above safe levels and that POP levels are associated with gene-specific DNA methylation in vitro as well as in environmentally exposed men. More research, however, is needed to fully elucidate the biological implications of this aberrant DNA methylation. A first step can be to measure histone modifications, as these two epigenetic marks together are likely better in predicting gene expression. The second step can be to investigate the potential health effects related to these epigenetic marks and to determine whether there is a causal relationship. Although at this point there is a lack of knowledge with regard to health effects caused by DNA methylation, the consumption of eel from these high-polluted areas is ill- advised, because adverse health effects cannot be excluded based on our results and can even be expected based on literature.

    Vis eten helpt mogelijk tegen dementie
    Rest, Ondine van de - \ 2016
    fish consumption - nutrition and health - nutrition research - dementia - alzheimer's disease - hereditary diseases - disease prevention

    Regelmatig vis eten helpt mogelijk dementie af te remmen bij mensen met een groot erfelijk risico op de ziekte. Het is een resultaat dat het belang van het huidige advies – één keer per week vis eten – nog eens onderstreept, schrijft Ondine van de Rest, onderzoeker bij Humane voeding, in het tijdschrift JAMA.

    Paling op straat
    Palstra, A.P. - \ 2015
    Visionair : het vakblad van sportvisserij Nederland 10 (2015)38. - ISSN 1569-7533 - p. 34 - 36.
    palingen - visconsumptie - japan - palingteelt - aquacultuur - eels - fish consumption - japan - eel culture - aquaculture
    Japanners eten graag paling. Het land kent zelfs speciale palingrestaurants. Het is daarom niet vreemd dat in Japan op grote schaal glasaal wordt opgekweekt.
    Mondjesmaat een maaltje vis: perspectieven om visconsumptie aan te jagen
    Dagevos, H. ; Zaalmink, W. - \ 2015
    Aquacultuur 30 (2015)2. - ISSN 1382-2764 - p. 13 - 16.
    visconsumptie - consumentengedrag - consumentenonderzoeken - houding van consumenten - visproducten - gezondheidsvoedsel - nederland - fish consumption - consumer behaviour - consumer surveys - consumer attitudes - fish products - health foods - netherlands
    Nederland is een visvangende natie, maar bepaald geen visetend land. Hoe komt dat toch? Hans Dagevos, werkzaam als consumptie socioloog bij het LEI, ging in opdracht van collega Wim Zaalmink (coördinator kenniskringen in de visserij) op zoek naar het antwoord op deze vraag. Conclusie is dat de sector vooral vanuit voedings- en gezondheidsoogpunt, een aantal ijzersterke troeven in handen heeft die kunnen bijdragen aan een hogere consumptie.
    Visvernieuwers: interesse van Europese consumenten voor innovatie in het (kweek)visschap
    Tacken, G.M.L. ; Dagevos, H. ; Reinders, M.J. - \ 2015
    Aquacultuur 30 (2015)2. - ISSN 1382-2764 - p. 8 - 11.
    visconsumptie - visproducten - voeding en gezondheid - gezondheidsvoedsel - dieetrichtlijnen - houding van consumenten - innovaties - kweekvis - consumentengedrag - aquacultuur - fish consumption - fish products - nutrition and health - health foods - dietary guidelines - consumer attitudes - innovations - farmed fish - consumer behaviour - aquaculture
    Vis is gezond en veel consumenten beoordelen vis ook als zodanig. Toch is gezond als een kwaliteitsaspect van vis vaak geen doorslaggevende reden om voor vis te kiezen. Het voedingsadvies om vaker vis te eten krijgt onder veel Europese consumenten onvoldoende navolging. Het product vis heeft met gezond weliswaar een sterke troef in handen die gekoesterd moet worden, deze kwaliteit alleen schiet tekort om consumenten (meer) vis te laten eten. Productvernieuwing is een mogelijk hulpmiddel hierbij. Ter aanvulling op gezond, als 'klassieke' kernkwaliteit van vis, wordt binnen het Europese onderzoeksproject 'Diversity' gezocht naar innovatieve ideeën met aantrekkingskracht op hedendaagse consumenten, waarbij meer specifiek oog is voor vijf nieuwe kweekvissoorten.
    Innovative mode of action based in vitro assays for detection of marine neurotoxins
    Nicolas, J.A.Y. - \ 2015
    Wageningen University. Promotor(en): Ivonne Rietjens, co-promotor(en): Peter Hendriksen; Toine Bovee. - Wageningen : Wageningen University - ISBN 9789462574724 - 214
    fish toxins - fish consumption - neurotoxins - food safety - food contamination - animal testing alternatives - food analysis - vistoxinen - visconsumptie - neurotoxinen - voedselveiligheid - voedselbesmetting - alternatieven voor dierproeven - voedselanalyse

    Innovative mode of action based in vitro assays for detection of marine neurotoxins

    J. Nicolas, P.J.M. Hendriksen, T.F.H. Bovee, I.M.C.M. Rietjens

    Marine biotoxins are naturally occurring compounds produced by particular phytoplankton species. These toxins often accumulate in seafood and thereby represent a threat to consumers. Regulatory limits have been set for lipophilic marine biotoxins (diarrhetic shellfish poisons (DSPs) and azaspiracids (AZPs)) and for most marine neurotoxins (amnesic (domoic acid (DA)), neurotoxic (NSPs), and paralytic shellfish poisons (PSPs)) and the detection of these biotoxins in seafood still heavily relies on the mouse bioassay (MBA). However, the MBA is forbidden since the 1st of January 2015, except for the periodic control of production areas, especially with regard to the detection of unknown marine biotoxins.

    Although analytical methods are sensitive to many marine biotoxins and allow for their identification and quantification, their use still presents several major drawbacks (chapter 3). They do not allow the detection of unknown toxins for example and are quite expensive to be used as routine screening methods. Therefore, a screening assay that allows the broad detection of known and unknown marine biotoxins with great sensitivity at affordable costs is highly needed. Mode of action cell-based assays offer these possibilities.

    This thesis describes a wide variety of innovative mode of action based assays that could be used for screening purposes and proposes an integrated testing strategy suitable for the current needs in terms of food safety associated with seafood consumption. In addition, the assays developed are in line with the 3R paradigm of Russel and Burch and therefore comply with the current European Regulation for the replacement of animal experiments in the field of marine neurotoxins detection in seafood.

    Framework to determine the effectiveness of dietary exposure mitigation to chemical contaminants
    Fels, H.J. van der; Edwards, S. ; Kennedy, M. ; O'Hagan, A. ; O'Mahony, C. ; Scholz, G. ; Steinberg, P. ; Tennant, D. ; Chiodini, A. - \ 2014
    Food and Chemical Toxicology 74 (2014). - ISSN 0278-6915 - p. 360 - 371.
    chromatography-mass spectrometry - solid-phase microextraction - extraction-gas chromatography - single-laboratory validation - fusarium mycotoxin content - methyl mercury exposure - spme-gc-ms - risk-assessment - baby-food - fish consumption
    In order to ensure the food safety, risk managers may implement measures to reduce human exposure to contaminants via food consumption. The evaluation of the effect of a measure is often an overlooked step in risk analysis process. The aim of this study was to develop a systematic approach for determining the effectiveness of mitigation measures to reduce dietary exposure to chemical contaminants. Based on expert opinion, a general framework for evaluation of the effectiveness of measures to reduce human exposure to food contaminants was developed. The general outline was refined by application to three different cases: 1) methyl mercury in fish and fish products, 2) deoxynivalenol in cereal grains, and 3) furan in heated products. It was found that many uncertainties and natural variations exist, which make it difficult to assess the impact of the mitigation measure. Whenever possible, quantitative methods should be used to describe the current variation and uncertainty. Additional data should be collected to cover natural variability and reduce uncertainty. For the time being, it is always better for the risk manager to have access to all available information, including an assessment of uncertainty; however, the proposed methodology provides a conceptual framework for addressing these systematically.
    Gezocht : chemische sporen van palingconsumptie
    Ramaker, R. ; Dungen, M.W. van den - \ 2014
    Resource: nieuwssite voor studenten en medewerkers van Wageningen UR 9 (2014)9. - ISSN 1389-7756 - p. 8 - 8.
    palingen - visconsumptie - voedselveiligheid - verontreinigd water - epigenetica - dioxinen - eels - fish consumption - food safety - polluted water - epigenetics - dioxins
    Onderzoeker wil honderd palingvissers voor onderzoek. Frequente palingeters geven mogelijk informatie over effect vervuiling.
    Functional foods and cardiometabolic diseases : International Task Force for Prevention of Cardiometabolic Diseases
    Assman, G. ; Buono, P. ; Valle, E. Della; Farinaro, E. ; Ferns, G. ; Krogh, V. ; Kromhout, D. - \ 2014
    Nutrition, Metabolism & Cardiovascular Diseases 24 (2014)12. - ISSN 0939-4753 - p. 1272 - 1300.
    coronary-heart-disease - n-3 fatty-acids - randomized controlled-trial - density-lipoprotein cholesterol - dietary fiber intake - cardiovascular risk-factors - stanol ester consumption - vitamin-e - plant sterols - fish consumption
    Mounting evidence supports the hypothesis that functional foods containing physiologically-active components may be healthful. Longitudinal cohort studies have shown that some food classes and dietary patterns are beneficial in primary prevention, and this has led to the identification of putative functional foods. This field, however, is at its very beginning, and additional research is necessary to substantiate the potential health benefit of foods for which the diet–health relationships are not yet scientifically validated. It appears essential, however, that before health claims are made for particular foods, in vivo randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled trials of clinical end-points are necessary to establish clinical efficacy. Since there is need for research work aimed at devising personalized diet based on genetic make-up, it seems more than reasonable the latter be modeled, at present, on the Mediterranean diet, given the large body of evidence of its healthful effects. The Mediterranean diet is a nutritional model whose origins go back to the traditional diet adopted in European countries bordering the Mediterranean sea, namely central and southern Italy, Greece and Spain; these populations have a lower incidence of cardiovascular diseases than the North American ones, whose diet is characterized by high intake of animal fat. The meeting in Naples and this document both aim to focus on the changes in time in these two different models of dietary habits and their fall out on public health.
    Vis onbekend : zoeken naar het waarom van de geringe visconsumptie in Nederland
    Dagevos, H. ; Zaalmink, W. - \ 2014
    Den Haag : LEI Wageningen UR (Nota 14-089) - 19
    visconsumptie - vis - visproducten - voedselconsumptie - voeding en gezondheid - consumptiepatronen - fish consumption - fish - fish products - food consumption - nutrition and health - consumption patterns
    Vanuit verschillende perspectieven is gezocht naar mogelijke antwoorden op de vraag waarom de visconsumptie in het Nederland van vandaag relatief gering is.
    Update on cardiometabolic health effects of w-3 fatty acids
    Kromhout, D. ; Goede, J. de - \ 2014
    Current Opinion in Lipidology 25 (2014)1. - ISSN 0957-9672 - p. 85 - 90.
    randomized controlled-trials - polyunsaturated fatty-acids - implantable cardioverter-defibrillators - long-chain omega-3-fatty-acids - fish consumption - cardiovascular-disease - myocardial-infarction - cardiac-arrhythmias - atrial-fibrillation - arterial stiffne
    PURPOSE OF REVIEW: The fish fatty acids eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) may promote cardiometabolic health. This review summarizes the results of recent meta-analyses of prospective studies on cardiovascular diseases, diabetes type 2 and markers of atherosclerosis and thrombosis. RECENT FINDINGS: The results of recently published meta-analyses of prospective cohort studies showed that eating fish once a week was associated with a 16% lower risk of fatal coronary heart disease (CHD) and a 14% lower risk of stroke incidence, but was not related to heart failure. Fish consumption may be associated with a higher risk of diabetes in Western countries and a lower risk in Asian countries. Recent meta-analyses of randomized controlled trials showed that EPA-DHA supplementation reduced the risk of fatal CHD and sudden death by 10% of which the latter was not significant. Extra EPA-DHA did not reduce the risk of heart failure, stroke and cardiac arrhythmias. ¿-3 fatty acid (FA) supplementation did reduce markers of ventricular fibrillation, inflammation and endothelial dysfunction and platelet aggregation. SUMMARY: There is strong evidence for a protective effect of ¿-3 FA on fatal CHD and for some markers of atherosclerosis and thrombosis. Consistent results were not obtained for other vascular diseases and diabetes. ¿-3 FA reduced markers of ventricular fibrillation but did not reduce the risk of atrial fibrillation.
    Consumptie van Chinese wolhandkrab in Nederland
    Leeuwen, S.P.J. van; Stouten, P. ; Zaalmink, W. ; Hoogenboom, L.A.P. - \ 2013
    Wageningen : RIKILT Wageningen UR (RIKILT-rapport 2013.018) - 43
    krabben (schaaldieren) - geïntroduceerde soorten - visconsumptie - voedselconsumptie - consumptiepatronen - voedselveiligheid - dioxinen - krabsvlees - polychloorbifenylen - crabs - introduced species - fish consumption - food consumption - consumption patterns - food safety - dioxins - crab meat - polychlorinated biphenyls
    Deze inventarisatie beschrijft de consumptiegebruiken van in Nederland woonachtige personen. Daarnaast zijn de handelsstromen van de wolhandkrab in Nederland en vanuit Nederland onderzocht.
    Gezonde vis alternatieven literatuurstudie binnen het beleidsondersteunende project "Nieuwe marktgerichte duurzame eiwitconcepten"
    Sluis, A.A. van der; Vereijken, J.M. - \ 2013
    Wageningen : Wageningen UR - Food & Biobased Research (Rapport / Wageningen UR Food & Biobased Research nr 1383) - 39
    vis - visconsumptie - docosahexaeenzuur - eicosapentaeenzuur - omega-3 vetzuren - voedingsstoffenbronnen - algen - aanbevolen dagelijkse hoeveelheden - voedingsmiddelenwetgeving - voedselverrijking - voeding en gezondheid - Nederland - fish - fish consumption - docosahexaenoic acid - eicosapentaenoic acid - omega-3 fatty acids - nutrient sources - algae - recommended dietary allowances - food legislation - food enrichment - nutrition and health - Netherlands
    Within the policy supporting project "New market-oriented sustainable protein concepts" (BO-08-018.03-002), a literature study is performed to healthy fish alternatives. The research question was: "What is the nutritional importance of fish consumption, what are alternatives to fish, are there technological and legal barriers, and what are the limits for enrichment with nutritional components?"
    An appeal for the presentation of detailed human derived data for dose-response calculations in nutritional science
    Jong, N. de; Verkaik-Kloosterman, J. ; Verhagen, H. ; Boshuizen, H.C. ; Bokkers, B. ; Hoekstra, J. - \ 2013
    Food and Chemical Toxicology 54 (2013). - ISSN 0278-6915 - p. 43 - 49.
    continuous end-points - fish consumption - trend estimation - risk - stroke - metaanalysis - statement - quality - health - example
    If a diet, food or food constituent is recognised to have both health benefits and health risks, the benefits have to be compared with the risks to develop coherent scientific evidence-based dietary advice. This means that both risk and benefit assessment should follow a similar paradigm and that benefits and risks are expressed in a common currency. Dose–response functions are vital for that purpose. However, the construction of these functions is often of second interest in the currently available (epidemiological) literature. In order to bring forward the potential of epidemiological studies for the construction of the dose–response functions for benefit–risk purposes, the scientific (nutrition and health) community is asked to expand on their data presentation, either by presenting more detailed data focusing on dose–response necessities, and/or by sharing primary data
    Evaluation of Seafood Product Concepts by Young Adults and Families with Young Children from Denmark, Norway, and Iceland
    Altintzoglou, T. ; Sveinsdottir, K. ; Einarsdottir, G. ; Schelvis, R. ; Luten, J.B. - \ 2012
    Journal of Aquatic Food Product Technology 21 (2012)5. - ISSN 1049-8850 - p. 418 - 432.
    5 european countries - fish consumption - health involvement - consumer - barriers - quality - determinants - convenience - perception
    This article describes the results of a study that tested the responses to 14 seafood concepts among young adults and families with young children in Denmark, Norway, and Iceland. This study was aimed at gaining insight into the evaluation of new seafood product concepts by individuals with low seafood consumption. Based on consumer-reported values and previous concept-testing, 14 seafood product concepts were tested by 296 consumers in a web-based experiment. Consumers' preferences depended on the size of fish, the presence of information, and the fish species offered. Young adult consumers evaluated the product concepts differently than parents of young children. Three consumer clusters, based on attitudinal variables, were identified explaining the differences in the evaluation of the product concepts. The outcome of this study will be used to develop a product for realistic in-home testing.
    Omega-3 fatty acids and coronary heart disease. The final verdict?
    Kromhout, D. - \ 2012
    Current Opinion in Lipidology 23 (2012)6. - ISSN 0957-9672 - p. 554 - 559.
    n-3 fatty-acids - randomized controlled-trials - postmyocardial infarction patients - fatal myocardial-infarction - fish consumption - cardiovascular-disease - eicosapentaenoic acid - risk - metaanalysis - mortality
    Purpose of review: The fish fatty acids eicosapentenoic acid (EPA) and docosahexenoic acid (DHA) may be protective against fatal coronary heart disease (CHD) and sudden cardiac death. This review summarizes the recent findings of prospective cohort studies and randomized controlled trials. Recent findings: A recently published meta-analysis of 17 prospective cohort studies showed that eating fish once a week compared to eating less fish was associated with a 16% lower risk of fatal CHD. Epidemiologic studies with cardiac arrest or sudden cardiac death as endpoint observed also an inverse relation with fish consumption. In contrast, a recently published meta-analysis of 14 randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled trials in cardiovascular patients did not show a protective effect of an additional amount of EPA-DHA on fatal CHD and sudden cardiac death. Subgroup analyses suggested that this could be because of a low absolute risk as a consequence of the state-of-the-art drug treatment. Summary: Eating fatty fish once or lean fish twice a week is recommended for both primary and secondary prevention of CHD. A definite statement cannot be made about the dosage of EPA-DHA required for secondary prevention of CHD
    B vitamins and n-3 fatty acids for brain development and function: review of human studies
    Rest, O. van de; Hooijdonk, L.W.A. ; Doets, E.L. ; Schiepers, O.J.G. ; Eilander, J.H.C. ; Groot, C.P.G.M. de - \ 2012
    Annals of Nutrition & Metabolism 60 (2012)4. - ISSN 0250-6807 - p. 272 - 292.
    alpha-linolenic acid - long-chain omega-3-fatty-acids - randomized controlled-trials - quality-of-life - depressive symptoms - docosahexaenoic acid - alzheimers-disease - folic-acid - cognitive function - fish consumption
    Background: Nutrition is one of many factors that affect brain development and functioning, and in recent years the role of certain nutrients has been investigated. B vitamins and n–3 polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFA) are two of the most promising and widely studied nutritional factors. Methods: In this review, we provide an overview of human studies published before August 2011 on how vitamin B6, folate, vitamin B12 and n–3 PUFA may affect the brain, their nutrient status and the existing evidence for an association between these nutrients and brain development, brain functioning and depression during different stages of the life cycle. Results: No recommendation can be given regarding a role of B vitamins, either because the number of studies on B vitamins is too limited (pregnant and lactating women and children) or the studies are not consistent (adults and elderly). For n–3 PUFA, observational evidence may be suggestive of a beneficial effect; however, this has not yet been sufficiently replicated in randomized controlled trials (RCTs). Conclusions: We found that the existing evidence from observational studies as well as RCTs is generally too limited and contradictory to draw firm conclusions. More research is needed, particularly a combination of good-quality long-term prospective studies and well-designed RCTs
    Consumer preferences regarding food-related risk-benefit messages
    Dijk, H. van; Kleef, E. van; Owen, H. ; Frewer, L.J. - \ 2012
    British Food Journal 114 (2012)3. - ISSN 0007-070X - p. 387 - 400.
    genetically-modified foods - fish consumption - health - communication - nutrition - attitudes - perception - decisions - industry - bias
    Purpose – The aim of this study is to identify and explore consumer preferences and information needs regarding the simultaneous communication of risks and benefits associated with food consumption. The focus is on the net health impact of risks and benefits on life expectancy, quality of life, and disability adjusted life years (DALYs). Design/methodology/approach – Focus groups were conducted in four countries (Iceland, The Netherlands, Portugal, UK). All sessions were audio-taped, transcribed and content analyzed. Findings – Current risk-benefit communication is perceived as “asymmetrical”, confusing, and often distrusted. Participants expressed a preference for more balanced and scientifically derived information. Information about the net health impact on both life expectancy and quality of life was found to be meaningful for food decision making. DALYs were thought too complicated. Research limitations/implications – Findings confirm the importance of incorporating consumers' viewpoints when developing communications about risk and benefits. The results provide insights into potential issues related to the communication of risk and benefit information. The limitations of the qualitative approach adopted in this study suggest that further research utilizing nationally representative samples is needed, which may explore additional metrics to communicate net health effects to consumers. Originality/value – Common measures for assessing both risks and benefits are expected to facilitate the communication of the results of risk-benefit assessment as part of risk analysis. However, research incorporating consumers' perspectives on this issue is scarce. A better understanding of how consumers perceive these measures may promote the development of more effective integrated risk benefit communication.
    Effects on n-3 fatty acids on depressive symptoms and dispositional optimism after myocardial infarction
    Giltay, E.J. ; Geleijnse, J.M. ; Kromhout, D. - \ 2011
    American Journal of Clinical Nutrition 94 (2011)6. - ISSN 0002-9165 - p. 1442 - 1450.
    coronary-heart-disease - randomized controlled-trial - placebo-controlled trial - major depression - fish consumption - omega-3-fatty-acid levels - general-population - dietary-intake - follow-up - metaanalysis
    Background: In patients who have experienced a myocardial infarction (MI), n-3 (omega-3) PUFA status is low, whereas the risk of depression is increased. Objective: The objective was to assess whether the plant-derived a-linolenic acid (ALA) and the fish fatty acids EPA and DHA would improve affective states. Design: In a secondary analysis of the randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled Alpha Omega Trial, 4116 of 4837 (85.1%) patients (aged 60–80 y; 79.2% men) who had experienced an MI were included. Margarine spreads were used to deliver 400 mg EPA-DHA/d, 2 g ALA/d, both EPA-DHA and ALA, or a placebo for 40 mo. At 40 mo, the endpoints of depressive symptoms (15-item Geriatric Depression Scale) and dispositional optimism (a 4-item questionnaire and the Life Orientation Test–Revised) were analyzed by using a posttest-only design. Results: The 4 randomly assigned groups did not differ in baseline characteristics. ALA supplementation significantly increased plasma cholesteryl ester concentrations of ALA by 69%, and EPA-DHA supplementation increased plasma cholesteryl ester concentrations of EPA and DHA by 61% and 30%, respectively. Depressive symptoms or dispositional optimism did not differ between groups with the use of n-3 fatty acids compared with placebo at the 40-mo follow-up. The standardized mean (±SE) differences in depressive symptoms were as follows: for EPA-DHA plus ALA (n = 1009) compared with placebo (n = 1030), -0.025 ± 0.044 (P = 0.57); for EPA-DHA (n = 1007) compared with placebo, -0.048 ± 0.044 (P = 0.28); and for ALA (n = 1022) compared with placebo, -0.047 ± 0.044 (P = 0.29). Conclusions: In patients who had experienced an MI, low-dose EPA-DHA supplementation, ALA supplementation, or a combination of both did not affect depressive symptoms and dispositional optimism. These findings are in accord with those from previous trials in individuals without psychopathology or without severe depressive symptoms. This trial was registered at as NCT00127452
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