Nestle boosts research into maternal nutrition and epigenetics


Nestlé one of the leading multinational food and beverage company, has announced it will contribute approximately $21.8 million to a six year research partnership with an international alliance of researchers at institutions in Southampton, Auckland and Singapore, who make up the EpiGen Consortium. The jointly funded public-private partnership will explore the field of epigenetics, the science of how eating behaviors and other environmental factors can affect your genes, health, and that of your offspring, for future generations to come.

Nestlé has been collaborating with the Consortium since 2011, studying how the diet and lifestyles of pregnant women influence the activity of their baby’s genes and how these subtle epigenetic changes impact the future healthy growth and development of their children.

“This is an important collaboration for Nestlé as it will help to better develop our understanding of the influence of nutrition and genetics at the beginning of life and continue to build our knowledge in this important area. To be involved in such cutting-edge research in such a vital and exciting field will enable us to create products that have a proven, positive impact on the health of mothers and their children,” said Stefan Catsicas, Chief Technology Officer, Nestlé.

The collaboration aims to improve nutrition and reduce risk factors of pregnancy-related conditions such as gestational diabetes, a growing problem affecting about 20% of pregnancies in the Southeast Asia region. Gestational diabetes is known to negatively impact the growth and development of children as well as the mother’s future health.

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