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ODS Conferences and Workshops

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  • Human Performance and Dietary Supplements Summit
    August 9–10, 2012
    Fitness professionals often find themselves on the front line answering questions about dietary supplements, including the latest research on use and safety. The Human Performance and Dietary Supplements Summit highlighted the science and helped fitness professionals translate it to meet the needs of pro athletes, the military, civilian public servants, and youth.  Experts from the medical, nutrition, athletic performance, and military fields explored how to educate clients and tactical populations on the fundamentals, certification, and testing of dietary supplements. Continuing education credits were made available for certified personal trainers and registered dietitians. This Summit was co-sponsored by the National Institutes of Health (NIH) Office of Dietary Supplements, the National Strength and Conditioning Association, the American Society for Nutrition, and EAS Academy.


  • Probiotic Foods and Supplements: The Science and Regulations of Labelingexternal link icon
    June 12, 2010
    The goals of this symposium were to facilitate the exchange of ideas regarding labeling and substantiation of claims for probiotics among academic, industry and regulatory professionals and to discuss ways to translate and communicate research results in an understandable way to the consumer and to health professionals. The target audience included academicians interested in conducting research on health benefits of probiotics; scientists, communications experts and regulatory specialists from companies involved or interested in marketing probiotics; U.S. government regulatory experts tasked with oversight of probiotic foods and dietary supplement products; and other experts in the field interested in the development of probiotics for the U.S. market. This symposium was supported by the New York Academy of Sciences, the National Institutes of Health (NIH) Office of Dietary Supplements, the NIH National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine, and the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.
  • Economic Analysis of Nutrition Interventions: Methods, Research, and Policy
    February 23–24, 2010
    The workshop consisted of three half-day sessions that covered the methods, research, and policy of the economic analysis of nutrition interventions. Sessions featured focused podium presentations and panel discussions. Products of the workshop included a summary of the discussions, identification of knowledge gaps, and suggestions for future research initiatives.


  • Vitamin D Biomarkers Methods Workshop
    December 16, 2009
    The workshop consisted of a series of short, focused podium presentations interspersed with open discussion sessions on the currently available analytical methods and interpretation of findings. A final session summarized the discussions, identified knowledge gaps, and suggested a research agenda for future studies. The meeting was sponsored by ODS.
  • Soy Protein and Isoflavones Research: Challenges in Designing and Evaluating Intervention Studies
    July 28–29, 2009
    The purpose of this workshop was to provide guidance for the next generation of soy protein and isoflavone human research. Specifically, the workshop objectives were to: (1) identify methodological issues relative to exposures and interventions that may confound study results and interpretation, and (2) identify scientifically sound and useful options and solutions for dealing with these issues in the design, conduct, reporting of results, and interpretation of ongoing and future studies.
  • NIDA-ODS Symposium: Caffeine: Is the Next Problem Already Brewing?external link icon
    July 7–8, 2009
  • 7th International Conference on Diet and Activity Methodsexternal link icon
    June 5–7, 2009
    Because all surveillance and epidemiologic studies examining diet and physical activity in relation to health depend on the strength of assessment methods, this international conference was devoted to improving methods and measures of  diet and physical activity. The conference was co-sponsored by the NIH Office of Dietary Supplements, the National Cancer Institute Applied Research Program, Active Living Research and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation.
  • 8th Annual Oxford International Conference on the Science of Botanicalsexternal link icon
    April 6–9, 2009
    The purpose of this conference was to review, discuss, and explore the confluence of current research topics in natural product chemistry, pharmacognosy, and botanicals. Topic areas included authentication, cultivation, collection, and post-harvest practices for producing quality plant material, and chemical, toxicological methods for quality/safety assessment of botanicals. This conference was supported by a cooperative agreement between the National Center for Natural Products Research (NCNPR) and the Center for Food Safety and Applied Nutrition (CFSAN) of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), along with Shanghai Institute of Materia Medica/CAS, China, The Council of Scientific & Industrial Research (CSIR, India), American Society of Pharmacognosy (ASP) and the Society for Medicinal Plant Research (GA).
  • Dietary Supplement Element Methodology Workshop
    March 23–24, 2009
    The purpose of this workshop was to evaluate the state of analytical methods for nutrient and non-nutrient minerals (including toxic elements) in dietary supplement products and to identify gaps in methodology, with a view toward designing a research program to fill the unmet methods needs of stakeholders.



  • Analytical Methods and Reference Materials Program Stakeholders' Meeting
    September 10, 2007
    The Office of Dietary Supplements (ODS) at the National Institutes of Health held a public meeting to solicit comments to assist the ODS with the continued implementation of an overall strategy for research, development, validation, and dissemination of analytical methods and standard reference materials for dietary supplement ingredients.  
  • Vitamin D and Health in the 21st Century
    September 5–6, 2007
    This conference sought to evaluate available evidence on the efficacy and safety of vitamin D, identify gaps in knowledge on the efficacy and safety of vitamin D in general and across the life cycle, inform NIH and other Federal agencies on research priorities in the area of vitamin D and health, and disseminate the conference proceedings and executive summary to inform the broader nutrition community.
  • Black Cohosh Safety Workshop
    June 28, 2007
    This workshop was a follow-up to the November 22, 2004 Black Cohosh workshop convened by NCCAM and ODS. The purpose of this second workshop in 2007 was to update and improve our understanding of the safety issues surrounding this botanical. The workshop provided brief overviews of the pre-clinical and clinical research conducted and published over the 30 months since the last workshop. Academic and industrial scientists presented results of their studies on the species. Regulatory scientists from countries that had recently addressed the marketing of black cohosh were asked to explain their stances and presented the clinical data that were the basis of policy changes, if any.
  • The Science of Botanical Supplements for Human Health: A View from the NIH Botanical Research Center Program
    April 28, 2007
    At this workshop that took place at the 2007 Experimental Biology Meeting, scientists from all six Botanical Research Centers funded by ODS and the National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine (NCCAM), discussed a spectrum of research activities ranging from plant identification to clinical investigation. Investigators shared strategies used in standardizing botanicals as research materials, applying newer technologies to botanicals research, and assessing efficacy of botanical preparations in early phase clinical trials. The goal of the centers is to advance the scientific base of knowledge about botanicals, including issues of their safety, efficacy, and biological action.


  • What You Need to Know About Multivitamin and Mineral Supplements, FNCE 2006
    September 17, 2006
    The purpose of this session was twofold: 1) to provide information about the state of the science on associations between use of multivitamin/mineral supplements with chronic disease risk in adults; to review the findings of a systematic evidence-based review commissioned by NIH on this topic; and the implications for dietetic practice; and 2) provide findings from recent nationwide (National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey) population-based surveys of total dietary intakes of children and adolescents, including dietary supplement use; and to summarize implications for dietitians in the planning and assessment of dietary intakes.
  • 5th Oxford International Conference on the Science of Botanicals
    August 21–24, 2006
    The purpose of this conference was to review, discuss, and explore methods for determining the identity, purity, quality, and processing of plants, commonly known as botanicals. Topic areas included authentication, cultivation, collection, and post-harvest practices for producing quality plant material, and chemical, toxicological methods for quality/safety assessment. This conference was supported by a cooperative agreement between the National Center for Natural Products Research (NCNPR) and the Center for Food Safety and Applied Nutrition (CFSAN) of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) along with Council of Scientific & Industrial Research (CSIR, India).
  • 47th Annual Meeting of the American Society of Pharmacognosy: Natural Products On Target
    August 5–9, 2006
    The following topics were presented at this meeting: 1) Synthetic and Biosynthetic Paths to Natural Products; 2) Clinical Evaluation of Herbs and Supplements: Trials, Toxicology and Drug Interactions; 3) Chemical Biology of Natural Products I: Molecular Targets; and Chemical Biology of Natural Products II: Molecular Methods.
  • North American Research Conference on Complementary & Integrative Medicineexternal link icon
    May 24–27, 2006
    This conference showcased original scientific research through keynote and plenary presentations, oral and poster presentations, and innovative interactive sessions. Presentations included research in basic science, clinical studies, methodology, health services, and education.
  • NIH State-of-the-Science Conference on Multivitamin/Mineral Supplements and Chronic Disease Prevention
    May 15–17, 2006
    It is estimated that more than one-third of American adults take multivitamin/mineral (MVM) supplements regularly. Recommendations regarding supplement use from expert groups vary widely, as does the strength of the evidence supporting such guidelines. The goal of this conference was to assess the evidence available on MVM use and outcomes for chronic disease prevention in adults, and to make recommendations for future research.
  • Zinc, Alcohol, and the Immune System
    May 11, 2006
    The purpose of the workshop was to review the scientific evidence reagarding the following: 1) Alcohol abuse and zinc depletion undermine the immune system thereby increasing susceptibility to infection. 2) Alcohol abuse and zinc depletion increase oxidative stress, and in this way cause tissue injury. 3) The mechanism of zinc action is through its possible restorative effects on the immune system and/or antioxidant pathways. 4) Zinc deficiency is a risk factor for alcohol-induced liver injury. 5) Consumption of zinc is a safe and effective means of affording protection from alcohol-induced tissue injury. Based on an assessment of the state-of-the-science, the panel identified gaps in the knowledge and made recommendations for targeted initiatives in basic and translational research.
  • Biological/Environmental Reference Materials Symposium
    April 30 – May 4, 2006
    The Tenth International Symposium on Biological and Environmental Reference Materials, BERM 10, was held in Charleston, South Carolina. As a continuation of the symposium series held alternately in the European Union and the United States since 1983, BERM 10 was a forum to address issues related to the development of biological and environmental reference materials and their role in the quality assurance of analytical measurements.


  • Why, When, What, and How of Clinical Trials: Educational Sessions
    November 9, 2005
    With growing recognition of the importance of conducting clinical trials to evaluate the safety and efficacy of dietary supplements, the Office of Dietary Supplements (ODS) was invited to organize three educational sessions at the November 2005 SupplySide West International Trade Show and Conference. The sessions featured scientists from academia and the government who spoke on the value of conducting clinical trials, designing trials to test hypotheses, appropriate selection of test materials and study subjects, and interpreting study findings, and funding clinical trials.
  • Dietary Supplement Use in the USA: Who's Using What and Why
    October 24, 2005
    Dietary supplement use is so pervasive in the United States today that it is becoming impossible to obtain estimates of total nutrient intakes without accounting for them. This session at the 2005 American Dietetic Association's Food & Nutrition Conference & Expo presented current data about why people use dietary supplements, how to collect and assess information about them, and some authoritative resources that dietitians can use.
  • Workshop on Diet, Nutrition, and Dietary Supplement Use in Autism: Evaluation of the Evidence
    October 6, 2005
    The workshop provided NIH with an overview of the current state of the science on dietary supplements and related interventions in managing autism; identified specific scientific questions concerning research needs and opportunities; and provided examples of the role of dietary supplements under investigation in management of autism spectrum disoder.
  • Role of Betaine in the Treatment of Alcoholic Liver Disease
    October 3, 2005
    This 1-day symposium explored the role of betaine in the treatment of alcoholic liver disease. The meeting was sponsored by the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism, the Office of Dietary Supplements, and the National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine.
  • Omega-3 Fatty Acids and their Role in Cardiac Arrhythmogenesis Workshop
    August 29–30, 2005
    The major goals for this workshop were to: (1) review the epidemiological evidence and the data from randomized trials on the role of omega-3 fatty acids in susceptibility to arrhythmias and sudden cardiac death; (2) explore the basic mechanisms by which omega-3 fatty acids affect cardiac excitability at the cellular and organ level; (3) identify the gaps and barriers in basic understanding of the effects of omega-3 fatty acids on cardiac electrical activity at the cellular, tissue, and whole body levels; and (4) provide prioritized recommendations for additional research studies to (a) better understand the basic mechanisms coupling omega-3 fatty acids to cardiac electrical activity and (b) facilitate translation of this knowledge to the treatment and prevention of cardiac arrhythmias.
  • Use and Misuse of Biomarkers as Indicators of Cancer Risk Reduction Following Dietary Manipulation
    July 12–13, 2005
    The purpose of this workshop was to provide the scientific community and  lay public a general background regarding  biomarker validation. The conference goals were to review and discuss the criteria for surrogate endpoints for cancer risk, identify biomarkers that are influenced by diet and determine their relationship to cancer risk and tumor behavior, and explore emerging biomarkers for their relevance to nutrition and cancer prevention.
  • Bioactive Food Components Meetings
    March 24 – April 1, 2005
    In these meetings, the Office of Dietary Supplements and other interested parties in the Federal government explored existing and new approaches in evaluating the significance of bioactive food components in health promotion and disease prevention.
  • An NIH Conference on Dietary Supplements, Coagulation, and Antithrombotic Therapies
    January 13–14, 2005
    This national conference was convened to increase the understanding of the potential for dietary supplements to interfere with hemostasis and antithrombotic therapies. Cosponsors included the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute and ODS.


  • Carnitine: the science behind a conditionally essential nutrient
    March 25–26, 2004
    This 2-day conference addressed topics related to carnitine. The meeting was sponsored by the National Institute of Child Health and Human Development, the National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine, the National Institute of Mental Health, and the Office of Dietary Supplements.