Milk genomics meeting heads for Europe

By staff reporter

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags Gene

Cutting edge research will be laid before Europe's dairy industry
in Brussels this autumn, when scientists from around the world will
discuss how the genetic make-up of milk affects human health.

The third, international Symposium on Milk Genomics and Human Health will be held in Brussels on 19-21 September.

The meeting will pull together scientists from around the world to discuss progress on understanding the genetic make-up of milk, and how this could benefit dairy industry development.

The show now forms the show-piece of the Milk Genomics Consortium, which provides a network of information and contacts for researchers.

The fact that Europe is hosting this year's symposium offers a wide range of European dairy sector players the chance to find out about cutting edge research affecting their industry, and at relatively little cost.

Dairy firms have taken a keener interest in milk genomics and its potential to help in developing new added value and functional products. Nestlé sent Martin Grigorov from its research centre in Switzerland to speak at the second symposium in California last November.

A University of California project spent much of last year building up a databank containing the different genes making up milk. Researchers from the US, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, Ireland, the Netherlands and Switzerland have all taken part.

From this, the team aims to discover more about how certain genes contribute to the make-up of milk and what their role is; for example, which molecules are linked to certain health benefits and how.

"The study of genomics allows us to go beyond simply understanding that milk is beneficial and challenges us to discover precisely how and why,"​ said Prof. J. Bruce German, of the University of California and also chair of the programme committee for this year's symposium in Brussels.

A speaker list for Brussels symposium will be announced mid-April. Registration will be €355 before 12 July and €395 afterwards. Members of the Milk Genomics Consortium will pay €20 less.

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