Beneficiary 1: University of Copenhagen (UCPH)
Faculty of Life Sciences at University of Copenhagen (www.life.ku.dk) is one of Europe's leading university environments in the areas of veterinary science, food and natural resources. The Department of Human Nutrition at the faculty of LIFE sciences, UCPH conducts research and education at a high international level within the area of human nutrition. Research areas cover prevention and treatment of obesity and related diseases, diabetes, cardiovascular diseases, paediatric nutrition and growth, micronutrients balance, and methods for measuring nutritional status.
Beneficiary 2: University of Helsinki (HEL)
The University of Helsinki (http://www.helsinki.fi/university/), established in 1640, is the most versatile university in Finland. It includes eleven faculties. High-level research is carried out at the departments of the faculties and departmentally affiliated research stations, as well as at independent research institutes. The Department of Food and Environmental Sciences is the largest department in the Faculty of Agriculture and Forestry. The department has all together 17 Professors in seven divisions (Food Chemistry, Chemistry and Biochemistry, Soil and Environmental Science, Biotechnology, Microbiology, Food Technology and Nutrition). Within the department there are several research groups where the activities are of high impact, both nationally and internationally acknowledged, and multidisciplinary. The department has been able to ensure up-to-date laboratory facilities as well as modern equipment necessary for the research activities. The department has also been successful in securing research funding from EU, the Academy of Finland and the Finnish Funding Agency for Technology and Innovation.
Beneficiary 3: Wageningen University (WU)
Wageningen University (WU) provides education and generates knowledge in the field of life sciences and natural resources. WU aims to make a real contribution to quality of life, involving both an adequate supply of safe and healthy food and drink, and the chance to live, work and play in a balanced ecosystem with a large variety of plants and animals. The Division of Human Nutrition of WU is one of the leading nutrition institutes in Europe and is located within the Agrotechnology and Food Sciences Group (AFSG) of WU. Its mission is to improve human health through better nutrition. The Division (~125 members) has a broad expertise and outstanding facilities for academic educations and research in Human Nutrition, in cell systems at the molecular level, in controlled dietary interventions at the individual level, and in observational studies at the population level. Many members of the Division are involved as PI or WP leaders in various EU FP6 programmes such as NUGO (PI), DIOGENES, INTERACT, EURRECA, EFCOVAL, CHANCES and SEAFOOD Plus.
Beneficiary 4: Maastricht University (UM)
NUTRIM School for Nutrition, Toxicology and Metabolism of Maastricht University Medical centre (MUMC+), Faculty of Health and Life Sciences (FHML) initiates and catalyzes translational research into nutritional health benefits and risks focusing on metabolic and chronic inflammatory diseases. The Maastricht clinical nutrition research is rightfully among the national and international research leaders. The MUMC+ also includes the Children’s Obesity Clinic, headed by Dr. A. Vreugdenhil. Collaboration takes place with the Faculty of Psychology and Neuroscience (FP), that includes the Maastricht Brain Imaging Center (M-Bic) with MRI scanning facilities including high-end 3 Tesla, 7 Tesla (mid-2012) and 9.4 Tesla (2013) magnets for state-of-the art functional brain imaging at sub-millimetre spatial resolution, which is managed by “Brains Unlimited” to provide high-quality support. One of the leading fMRI analysis and visualization software packages in the world (“BrainVoyager”, http://www.BrainVoyager.com) is developed by Professor R. Goebel, head of the M-Bic.
Beneficiary 5: University of Nottingham (UNOTT)
University of Nottingham (UNOTT) is a public research university based in Nottingham, United Kingdom. UNOTT is the third most popular university in the United Kingdom.
Key competences of UNOTT are:
• The ability to undertake detailed nutritional and physiological studies in human participants such as:
• Dietary intervention and analysis in relation to exercise, weight loss and weight maintenance in obesity and diabetes and ageing.
• Experience in dietary manipulation and supplementation studies involving complex studies in smaller numbers (30-40) or simpler studies in larger numbers (200+) of participants.
• Technical expertise includes measurement of thermogenic and metabolic responses to food and dietary manipulations using indirect calorimetry, biochemical measurements on blood, urine and tissue biopsy (skeletal muscle, adipose tissue), measurement of gene and protein expression in tissue biopsies and white blood cells.
• Assessments of insulin sensitivity using the euglycaemic, hyperinsulinaemic clamp, of body composition with DEXA and MR imaging, of tissue lipids and glycogen using MR spectroscopy (particularly of liver and skeletal muscle) and measurement of muscle metabolism and function and exercise responses using cycle ergometry, treadmills, isokinetic dynamometry.
• Large network of Primary and Secondary care in the local National Health Service to enable studies on obese subjects and on people with type-2 diabetes. A recent example includes a study of effects of weight loss on knee pain in obese individuals.
Beneficiary 6: University of Navarra (UNAV)
The University of Navarra is a private pontifical university based at the southeast border of Pamplona, Spain. Through its four campuses (Pamplona, San Sebastián, Madrid and Barcelona), the University confers 27 official degrees and administers more than 300 postgraduate programs (including 33 doctoral programs and 13 master's programs) through 10 schools, 2 superior colleges, and 2 university schools.
The department of Nutrition and Food Sciences, Physiology and Toxicology of the University of Navarra has carried out a number of nutritional intervention studies with different populations (healthy and diseased individuals) in the last ten years for different companies and public organisations (EU, Ministry of Health, Ministry of Sciences and Innovation and Government of Navarra). In the context of the European Union, the group integrated at the University of Navarra has recently been involved in SEAFOOD plus, NUGENOB and DIOGENES projects, and is currently involved in the Food4Me project within the 7th Framework Programme of the EU. The proposers have published at least 200 papers/communications in the area of interest of EU Frameworks in the last ten years. The department has obtained funds to investigate different aspects of human nutrition from different organisations and Institutions including the EU. The facilities for human studies include kitchen, dining-room and metabolic unit, which is managed by skilled personal. The methods currently developed concerning nutritional intervention trials comprise indirect calorimetric measurements, stable isotopes labelling, dietary assessment, body composition techniques (BIA and DXA), various biochemical measurements (COBAS, RIA), among others. Also, the Unit is well prepared to develop experiments concerning basic and applied research (DNA and RNA expression techniques, microarrays, SNP & CNV determinations, etc.).
Beneficiary 7: Medical University Sofia (MU)
The Medical University – Sofia is the oldest medical institution of higher education in Bulgaria. Medical Faculty was founded by the Decree of His Majesty King Ferdinand in 1917. The University has history and tradition of nearly a century in medical education and science. The ultimate goal of the University is to teach and train students (under-, post-graduates and Ph.D.), to conduct research and to provide highly specialized health-care for people. The Medical University – Sofia has internationally recognized achievements in cardio-thoracic surgery, neurosurgery, ophthalmic surgery, high tech diagnostics of human diseases, prevention programmes for cardio-vascular and inherited diseases, bone-marrow transplantation, development of new compounds of synthetic and natural origin, genetics, etc. The Medical University joined the SOCRATES/ERASMUS programme of the European Community in the 1999 year. This is a programme for contacts with universities from abroad with the intention of increasing the percentage of students undertaking a period of study in another European country. Prof. Svetoslav Handjiev was national coordinator of the pan-European project DiOGenes (www.diogenes-eu.org) as well as coordinator of the European dietician project DIETS. He is coordinator of various national and international scientific projects. Prof. Svetoslav Handjiev is president of the organizing committees of international congresses on obesity and related diseases (2000, 2004, 2006, 2009 and 2011) as well as president of the organizing committee of the 21st European congress on obesity, Sofia 2014.
Beneficiary 8: Swansea University (SU)
Swansea University is organised into 6 academic colleges and diabetes research expertise cuts across medicine, science, health and engineering. In particular the Colleges of Medicine and Engineering are renowned for their world class research. The Research Centre for Sport, Technology and Exercise and Medicine is unique in the UK as it is situated within the college of engineering where research opportunities in medical engineering, sport and health and electronics and nano-health are exploited. For children in particular research sits under the Centre for Children and Young People’s Health and Well-Being, the Diabetes Research Network and Clinical Trial Unit is situated in the College of Medicine. There is considerable expertise to offer the PREVIEW project. Swansea University is the only UK University to strategically appoint two Professors (Stratton and Thomas) who specialises in children health and exercise, there is significant clinical trial work and statistical expertise (Dr Brophy) in the study of diabetes and related illnesses and there is world leading expertise in engineering and technologies used in the measurement of physical activity. Swansea University has run a number of RCTs in diabetes and in children and exercise and we have close working links with clinical and health promotion groups. Their work also covers the lifespan.
Beneficiary 9: University of Stuttgart (USTUTT)
The University of Stuttgart (USTUTT) is one of the leading technical Universities in Germany (TU9). The Division Sport and Health Sciences in the Department of Sport- and exercise Science conduct research within the area of exercise and physical activity for health. Research areas cover prevention of non-communicable diseases and promotion of well-being especially for the elderly. USTUTT main focus in research is on behaviour modification of people leading an inactive and sedentary lifestyle and on the maintenance of a physically active lifestyle. USTUTT plans and evaluates theory based complex interventions (based on health psychology), use ecological momentary assessment and intervention (EMA and EMI) and study affective reactions as a result of daily physical activities (emotions, subjective wellbeing). Furthermore, USTUTT focuses on exercise gerontology, too.
Beneficiary 10: Meyers Madhus (MM)
The R&D capacity of the Danish culinary institution and cooking school, Meyers Madhus, is critical to the success of PREVIEW. For more than a decade, Meyers Madhus has been pioneers in cooperating with nutritional science with the aim of bridging the pleasure giving qualities of food with the consideration for health and vitality.
Meyers Madhus has great experience in teaching and communicating within the field of gastronomy and health to both the public and professionals. Currently, Meyers Madhus is deeply involved in a large 15 billion euro Danish interdisciplinary dietary research project, OPUS. The aim here is to create optimal well-being, development and health for Danish children through a healthy New Nordic Diet. Due to MM’s experience with scientific work and a deep practical understanding of both human nutrition and gastronomy Meyers Madhus is a very relevant partner in the PREVIEW project.
Currently, Meyers Madhus is deeply involved in a large Danish interdisciplinary dietary research project, OPUS, where the aim is to strengthen public health by focusing on food and the quality of life, teaching abilities and general health of adults and children. The experience with scientific work makes this LE optimally suited for the PREVIEW project.
Beneficiary 11: NetUnion (NETUnion)
NETUnion provides technology-enhanced solutions for the research and development of chronic disease self-management with a focus on obesity, diabetes, and eating disorders. Our main developments include: online support program for lifestyle change (Salut programs for eating disorders), the obesity risk and behavioural advice screening tool (Orbast) for matching healthy food intake and behaviour, and the QDP, a multilingual Questionnaire Delivery Platform for gathering consumer attitudes and behaviours related to food choice, and healthy life style. The QDP is designed to deliver simple, as well as complex and innovative questionnaires such as the Leeds Food Choice Questionnaire, which is used to track changes in food choice/preference relating to degree of satiety. The company has a long successful track record in providing data collection support for multi-lingual, multi-centre research projects. Both the Orbast and the QDP was developed in the European research project DiOGenes (Diet, Obesity and Genes). For more information please visit: http://www.netunion.com/projects/
Beneficiary 12: National Institute for Health and Welfare (THL)
The National Institute for Health and Welfare (Terveyden ja hyvinvoinnin laitos, THL) is a research and development institute under the Finnish Ministry of Social Affairs and Health. THL's functions are to promote the welfare and health of the population, prevent diseases and social problems, and develop social and health services. The Disease Risk Unit (TLAB) is a part of Department of Chronic Disease Prevention at the Division of Welfare and Health Promotion. The department carries out research in the etiology, risk factors, occurrence and prevention of chronic diseases such as cardiovascular disease, type 1 and 2 diabetes, and cancer. TLAB performs laboratory analyses and research activities involving risk factors of CVD and diabetes. The other focus is on dietary biomarkers including fatty acids, vitamins, carotenoids and polyphenols. The laboratory is accredited by FINAS (SFS-EN ISO/IEC 17025) and has attended to the CDC Lipid Standardization Program since 2001.
Beneficiary 13: University of Sydney (UNSYD)
The Boden Institute of Obesity, Nutrition, Exercise & Eating Disorders at the University of Sydney is committed to reducing the individual and societal impact of obesity and lifestyle-related chronic disease such as type 2 diabetes, heart disease, hypertension, cancer, mental illness and osteoarthritis through attention to important underlying factors such as obesity, inappropriate nutrition and physical inactivity.
Beneficiary 14: University of Auckland (UOA)
The Human Nutrition Unit, University of Auckland is a leading institution within nutritional research and has competences with:
• Conduct of clinical intervention trials investigating diet, physical activity and human health
• Expertise in pre-diabetic and diabetic populations; also across ethnicities
• Controlled diet and exercise manipulations in residential nutrition facility
• Large scale community interventions; provision of intervention diets and lifestyle advice
• Appetite research facility, exercise physiology laboratory, body composition suite
• Metabolic laboratory including OGTT, ITT, insulin clamps, adipose & muscle biopsy, MRI, ultrasound, collection of blood/saliva/urine/faecal samples
• Data management through University of Auckland Clinical Trials Research Unit
Beneficiary 15: Laval University (ULAVAL)
The Division of Kinesiology, Laval University is a leading institution within nutritional research and has competences with:
• Conduct of population studies and clinical intervention trials investigating diet and physical activity in human obesity.
• Physiological expertise in the characterization of environmental determinants of obesity.
• Controlled diet and exercise manipulations in a laboratory setting.
• Study of the control of appetite and energy intake in relation to the development of functional foods.
• Laboratory expertise in the determination of energy expenditure, energy intake, biomarkers related to plasma glucose and insulin homeostasis, persistent organic pollutants and different psychosocial indicators.