Selenium is a key component influencing several major metabolic pathways, including thyroid hormone metabolism, antioxidant defence systems, and immune function. The average blood serum Se concentration has declined from 1.5 ?g/L to 1.1 ?g/L in recent yea rs, which is partially attributed to the increasing proportion of the selfproviding suboptimal Se cereals in the Norwegian diet. This may have several potential public health implications, particularly in relation to the chronic disease prevalence such ca ncer and cardiovascular diseases.
Strategies to increase the food plant Se concentration are well known, but total Se concentration cannot be used as a measure of the Se nutrition effect. Bioavailability and biological activity of plant Se-species are imp ortant factors in nutrition, since it varies for different foods, food components and gastrointestinal (GI) conditions. Knowledge of the Se speciation and individual plant Se-compound is essential to fully asses their transported across cell membranes and their anti-inflammatory, antioxidant and anti-carcinogenic properties.
The proposed project is an interdisciplinary collaboration between food-, analytical- and health scientists aiming to optimise the Se bioavailability in Se-enriched wheat, broccoli a nd onion, having optimal antioxidant effect, acting as a protective agent against inflammatory diseases, prostate tumour cells and oxidative stress. Advanced methods to be used for Se?speciation: Se uptake and distribution in plants, transformation in GI fluids and cells, and cross membrane transport are HPLC-ICP/MS, ESI-MS, 2D SDS-PAGE and synchrotron XAS microtechniques (micro-XANES). Oxidative stress, induced by the UMB gamma radiation facility, should be reduced for Se-fed NF-?B reporting cells, Se- fed NF-kB reporting mice and Se-fed DNA deficient repair mice.