“Exciting possibilities ahead for omega 3” flags GOED after database launch
09 Mar 2022 --- The future surrounding omega 3s is brimming with potential in personalization, novel foods and new research potential, according to the Global Organization for EPA and DHA omega 3s (GOED), which has launched a new database aimed to aid science and industry alike.
“This is the first database of its kind. We see industry and researchers being able to jump in and use this tool as the research on omega 3s continues to evolve and develop,” Dr. Kaitlin Roke, director of scientific communications and outreach at GOED, tells NutritionInsight.
“We see companies using this to understand the body of evidence supporting their omega 3 products, help substantiate claims on marketing materials and inform product development or new research into emerging scientific areas.”
Years in the making
According to Roke, the GOED Clinical Study Database is like a sophisticated PubMed or Google Scholar. It works with PubMed to generate an initial list of articles within the field of omega 3s.
The project was years in the making, with more than 50 independent research assistants helping to review more than 40,000 studies on omega 3s. The result was creating a comprehensive, searchable tool that details all human clinical trials – about 4,000 in total.
“The database is carefully curated and contains a pre-screened article list about EPA and DHA omega 3s, with a focus on human interventional studies. Unlike PubMed, GOED’s Clinical Study Database also includes data on every outcome in each study, not just what’s covered in the abstract,” Roke underlines.
It includes filters such as population, intervention, dosage and study characteristics.
“With this tool, we’re helping researchers and scientists save countless hours of PubMed searches and journal article reading.”
Emerging scientific areas
The database could aid both industry and research, with information potentially shaping personalized nutrition, Roke underscores.
“We know there are many factors influencing our health, including our genetics, diet, exercise habits and age. At GOED, the mission is to help support increased intake of EPA and DHA omega 3 fats for all people.”
“Being able to use the database to understand the specific attributes of various populations studied may help to make a more specific recommendation for dose or type of omega 3.”
Additionally, better understanding of existing science on its impact on specific health outcomes could help facilitate the development of novel foods or supplement products, she adds.
Most people are not getting enough omega 3, EPA and DHA, Roke notes, and the database can facilitate summaries of information and enhance knowledge translation, which can, in turn, help healthcare practitioners in their conversation with patients.
Currently, the omega 3 industry is working toward creating Dietary Reference Intakes following evidence that maintaining high levels of omega 3 can benefit the immunity and cell structure of healthy adults.
Innovation lies in data
One of the original reasons for this database came because of misleading and negative media articles about EPA and DHA, Roke underscores.
“To provide supporting evidence to rebut the inaccuracies in the article would take days, much too long for today’s super-fast news cycle. We also recognized the need to understand the body of evidence around a particular outcome, both to support our members and to understand where the research gaps are.”
With access to more information, opportunities lie in better substantiating health claims, preparing white papers and opinion articles, performing systematic reviews and meta-analyses, identifying gaps in research and providing direction in product development and marketing, she adds.
“There are exciting possibilities ahead for omega 3 EPA and DHA, and we think this database can help those in the field build the evidence they need to further define their new research grants and programs and their new products or business ideas.”
By Andria Kades
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