The IViDiS; an artificial stomach that assesses foods (video)

The artificial stomach — or IViDiS — is an innovation of Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada’s Food Research and Development Centre in St-Hyacinthe. It allows researchers and the food processing industry to better predict what really happens in the human body when introducing bioactive foods. Take a look at our video to learn more.

Video transcript

[Electronic percussion music starts.]

[Agriculture an Agri-Food logo and red maple leaf and title the ividis – an artifical stomach that assesses foods over an image of laboratory tubes feeding into a stainless steel container]

[Tube and vials connecting to clear containers bubbling with white liquid in a laboratory. A roadside sign for the Government of Canada Food Research and Development Centre in St-Hyacinth near the sprawling industrial building.]

narrator: The artificial stomach — or IViDiS — is an innovation of Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada’s Food Research and Development Centre in St-Hyacinthe.

[Inside the bright modern building two men dressed in casual business clothes walk down the hall and descend the stairs. A female and male scientist work together at a computer in a lab, 2 scientists attend a large glass walled lab filled with high tech equipment.]

narrator: It allows researchers and the food processing industry to better predict what really happens in the human body when introducing bioactive foods.

Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada researcher Yves Arcand: It is largely a mastication system that is used to form a food bolus whose texture and composition is designed to replicate the human food bolus as closely as possible.

Saliva is produced with the required composition and quantity corresponding to each bite and gulp, contrary to other systems where the composition is consistent.

Our system also produces different digestive solutions based on the type of eater and the composition of each element of the meal.

The system therefore analyzes the stability of bioactive ingredients during digestion. All this is to understand the changes in the various food matrices.

[Vials labeled saliva, gastric solution, bile, pepsinogen, lipase, surround laboratory equipment; white liquids are combined in beakers.]

narrator: Now, we might ask why we need such a system.

The food industry is currently developing so-called functional foods fortified with bioactives.

[A white powder is mixed into a vat of white liquid. A rack of cheese is wheeled away.]

narrator: The exercise of developing functional foods presents both a scientific challenge and an interesting avenue for the future. But we need trials before we can move on to clinical studies. The artificial stomach is the technology that facilitates these trials.

[Research scientists Yves Arcand and fellow scientist consult in the lab.]

narrator: Our researchers use it in a number of research projects, in particular to improve the survival of probiotics in ferments and consumer products.

Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada researcher Claude Champagne: Probiotic bacteria are living organisms. Our challenge, therefore, is to keep these bacteria alive.

[Scientists examine experimental white food products containing large black beads.]

We have developed micro-encapsulation techniques, such as gel beads or systems that specifically coat cultures, and with these micro-encapsulation techniques, we can separate the bacteria from the food matrix and sometimes increase their survival.

[Researchers inject small amounts of liquid with a syringe, bottle are filled with liquid, liquids are tested and monitored using various pieces of equipment.]

Dr. Yves Arcand: This tool should be seen as an intermediate step that simplifies human study, which is much more expensive.

Let’s take the yogurt production industry again. If the industry decides to add new bacteria strains to its recipes, the first question to ask is: What will be the concentration of bacteria? What will be the proportion of each bacterion? In what matrix do we want them? Do we want them in spoonable yogurt, such as Greek yogurt, or in lighter yogurt, such as drinkable yogurt?

This makes a lot of conditions to test, and to simplify what we can do, we can conduct tests using in-vitro conditions. We will start by testing these hundreds of conditions and then narrow it down to a few of the best conditions, which we can then test on humans.

[A researcher using a black marker makes notes on the cover of a petri dish]

narrator: Before its creation, no one could say for sure that probiotics survived the conditions present in the stomach.

The artificial stomach has confirmed a host of positive responses.

This technology opens the door to wide range of possibilities, making functional foods increasingly accessible to consumers.

[White liquid splashes in containers and machines. Tubes feed into containers bubbling with white liquid. A smiling Dr. Yves Arcand stands before the high tech lab equipment.]

[Title Modern. Innovative. Growing. Discover other agricultural innovations at www.agr.gc.ca above images of the bacteria, lab equipment and research scientist]

[Canada wordmark on a white background.]

[(c) Her Majesty the Queen in Right of Canada, represented by the Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food (2016)]

[Electronic percussion music ends.]

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