InfoGest is a COST (European Cooperation in Science and Technology) action that aims at building an open international network of institutes and scientists studying food digestion. InfoGest partners have published two new papers on in vitro digestion models. Simulated gastro-intestinal digestion is widely employed as a resource efficient research method prior to human trials or explaining food-related phenomena in physiological conditions. The paper of Minekus et al (2014) is a consensus paper describing a standardised static in vitro digestion method suitable for food. The harmonized model describes how electrolyte solutions can be combined to simulate salivary, gastric and intestinal fluids at physiological pH:s. Standardised method is crucial to be able to compare the results across research teams. For example differences in pH, mineral type, ionic strength and digestion time, which alter enzyme activity and other phenomena, may considerably have an impact on results. The applications of this model are various starting from protein, starch or lipid digestion and can also be used for bile acid binding. The model, which has been set up also at VTT, can be used for testing foods or food ingredients and their interactions with enzymes.
The review paper of Alminger et al (2014) In vitro models for studying secondary plant metabolite digestion and bioaccessibility describes application of in vitro digestion models simulating upper intestine and colon on plant food phytochemicals, particularly lipophilic carotenoids and hydrophilic polyphenols. The review describes considerations to be taken into account in respect to pre-treatments, processing, meal size and choice of test meals. Models with batch and continuous approaches, comparisons of physiological conditions simulated in vitro and those monitored in vivo, and finally, recommendations for a batch in vitro digestion model are presented. The article gives a nice overview of study approaches and critical aspects in relation to the nature of phytochemicals and their interactions with alimentary enzymes and colon microbiota.
Minekus, M., Alminger, M., Alvito, P., Ballance, S., Bohn, T., Bourlieu, C,. Carri'ere, F., Boutrou, R., Corredig, M., Dupont, D., Dufour, C., Egger, L., Golding, M., Karakaya, S., Kirkhus, B,. Le Feunteun, S., Lesmes, U., Macierzanka, A., Mackie, A., Marze, S., McClements, D. J., M´enard, O., Recio, I., Santos, C. N., Singh, R. P., Vegarud, G. E., Wickham, M. S. J., Weitschies W. and Brodkorb A. standardised static in vitro digestion method suitable for food – an international consensus. Food and Function. DOI: 10.1039/c3fo60702j
Alminger, M., Aura, A.-M., Bohn, T., Dufour, C., El, S.N., Gomes, A., Karakaya, S., Martinez-Cuesta, M.C., McDougall, G.J., Requena, T. and Santos, C.N. 2014. In vitro models for studying secondary plant metabolite digestion and bioaccessibility. Comprehensive Reviews in Food Science and Food Safety. 13, 413-436.
For more information: