Who will fund antioxidant biomarker development?

By Shane Starling

- Last updated on GMT

The controversy surrounding antioxidant science is not being helped by a lack of validated biomarkers, says Professor Wilhem Stahl, an antioxidant researcher at the University of Dusseldorf. Which doesn’t mean they are due any time soon.

At the recent NutraIngredients 2010 conference, Professor Stahl explained why there is a lack of biomarkers in the first place and what is being done about it.

“On the one hand you have to have valid analytical methods,” ​he said. “On the other hand you have to demonstrate that these markers really detect what you claim. That means measure of DNA, oxidative damage, or protein or lipid oxidative damage.”

The role of economics plays a big part in biomarker development, Professor Stahl observed.

“I think more time has to be spent on the markers themselves. It is happening but it turns out that the methods that are needed to produce reliable markers are more expensive than the methods to produce unreliable markers. Finally it comes down to the money.”

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