Expert consultation to accelerate advances in nutrition science

Wellcome and the World Health Organization (WHO) are holding an expert meeting this autumn to bring together leading scientists and promising early-career researchers to galvanise nutrition science.

The meeting, at Wellcome’s London office from 15-17 October, aims to:

Poor nutrition has major health and economic impact

Wherever we live, at whatever age, good nutrition is the foundation of health.

Patterns of malnutrition are changing. While the number of children who are underweight and stunted is decreasing in some countries, the number of children and adults who are overweight and obese is increasing in virtually every region. This will have major health and economic consequences for generations to come.

Many countries are facing a double burden of under- and overnutrition, with huge implications for policy and resources. Malnutrition affects the ability to learn and earn, and has lifelong ramifications. Throughout life, poor nutrition increases susceptibility to disease and reduces our ability to recover from illness and respond to treatment.

And as people live longer, maintaining good nutrition in later life is a challenge for health providers and individuals alike.

Transforming nutrition science for better health

To tackle these health issues and to invigorate nutrition science, Wellcome and the WHO plan to gather around 60 invited experts who are world-leading scientists from a range of disciplines, plus selected early-career researchers.

We want to stimulate innovative, multifaceted discussions, bring new technologies to old problems and foster multidisciplinary collaboration to break down scientific silos.

The meeting, ‘Transforming Nutrition Science for Better Health’, will focus on two areas:

It will bring together researchers in basic sciences, and clinical and population health research who are at the cutting edge of thinking about both under- and over-nutrition, and who focus on different life stages.

The aim is to create an opportunity for participants to learn from and challenge one another to stimulate innovative thinking.

We want everyone’s views and there will be an opportunity for the wider research and policy communities to contribute to the discussions.

This is the start of a conversation that we hope will have ripple effects for years to come, stimulating collaborative approaches on a range of issues where nutrition science has the potential to improve health for all.

Some of the experts who are already taking part include:

We hope that by coming together as a broad research community, we can catalyse a transformation in nutrition science to benefit people’s health worldwide.

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