ILSI simplifies all things microbiome health with updated monograph

By Nikki Hancocks

- Last updated on GMT

getty | luckystep
getty | luckystep

Related tags microbiome Research monograph ILSI

The International Life Sciences Institute (ILSI) Europe has just released its updated microbiome health ‘monograph’, providing a 40 page rundown of the science behind pre- and probiotics to date.

The organisation's Probiotic and Prebiotic Task Forces collaborated to create the update monograph to provide an easy-to-understand and objective source of information for interested non-specialists across industry, academia, healthcare and governmental agencies as well as students in health and nutrition.

Initially published nine years ago, this monograph has been updated to reflect up-to-date science and definitions, including the updated names for microbes and the new science around mechanisms of action for digestive, immune and metabolic health.

The document​, available via the ILSI website, also addresses emerging research associated with the gut-brain axis, for example, mental health. Advances in technology have allowed novel and more in-depth analyses of the intestinal microbiome and cross-talk with the host, which has also been revised.

Elaine Vaughan, who works in scientific and regulatory affairs at Sensus and is a member of ILSI's Prebiotic Task Force, said: “The revision of this valuable monograph has highlighted the substantial developments in research findings on pro- and prebiotics. Stronger evidence for benefits has been realised, with prebiotics having made considerable progress since the previous version.

"This has been supported by related ground-breaking advances in the human gut microbiome technologies, and knowledge on crosstalk with the gut-brain and gut-lung axis, that are implicated in the health effects. This will bring greater scientific credibility to the pro- and prebiotic fields.”

This second edition of the monograph, approved by the International Scientific Association of Pro- and Prebiotics (ISAPP), is available in English, Chinese, French, Japanese, Portuguese, Slovak and Spanish.

Marc Heyndrickx, scientific director at ILVO and member of ILSI's Probiotic Task Force, says the document gives "a well-balanced and scientifically justified overview of how pro- and prebiotics can have a positive effect on our health from childhood up to older age"​.

"In an era where we are confronted with different types of information, I find it very useful to have this kind of monographs where different specialists from academia and industry work together to gather relevant information into one science-based document,” ​he adds.

The experts who contributed to this update include: Oliver Chen, Marc Heyndrickx, Alexandra Meynier, Arthur Ouwehand, Bruno Pot, Bernd Stahl, Stephan Theis, Elaine Vaughan and Michela Miani. 

Arthur Ouwehand, technical fellow at IFF and chair of the Probiotic Task Force, added: “The monograph was compiled by academic and industrial experts in the field. It was an interesting exercise for all of us: explaining the latest science in an understandable, objective and scientifically correct way. But I am really happy with the result, it is very useful for customers, interested lay people and students alike. On top of that, we now have this in several languages.”

Related topics Regulation & policy

Follow us


View more