ATHENA: AnThocyanin and polyphenol bioactives for Health Enhancement through Nutritional Advancement
Anthocyanins are health promoting dietary polyphenols that protect against cardiovascular disease, cancer andobesity in preclinical studies with animals. The ATHENA project will address how good dietary anthocyaninsare in protecting against chronic disease, by addressing the following questions:· Benefits and risks: What is the dose response to anthocyanin phytonutrients? Are anthocyanins fromdifferent food sources equivalent? How well do anthocyanins perform in promoting health compared toother polyphenol phytonutrients such as stilbenes, isoflavones and epicatechins?· Mechanisms of action: What are the mechanisms of action of polyphenol phytonutrients in combatingchronic diseases? How do anthocyanins limit weight gain/fat development? How do dietaryanthocyanins offer cardioprotection? How do dietary anthocyanins slow the progression of cancers?· Food or Pharma: Supplements or extracts of polyphenols do not appear to promote health as well aswhen they are consumed in whole foods. What is the influence of nutritional context on the efficacy ofpolyphenol phytonutrients? Does nutritional context influence the bioavailability of polyphenolphytonutrients?· Roles in human: Do dietary anthocyanins afford protection against cardiovascular disease, cancer andother chronic diseases in human?It is the uniqueness of the interactions that ATHENA will promote, that will innovate and give the mostsignificant added-value to Europe. ATHENA will bring together groups with widely different expertise fromacross Europe, so that the consortium will be able to achieve significant progress towards addressing the GrandChallenge of Chronic Disease. It will impact the health, well being and quality of life across Europe.