Interrelation of the Intestinal Microbiome, Diet and Health (co-funded call)

In January 2017, the first joint funding action of the ERA-Net Cofund “Interrelation of the INtesTInal MICrobiome, Diet and Health” (HDHL-INTIMIC) was launched by nine countries. Projects started in the beginning of 2018 and run for three years.


The composition and activity of the human gut microbiome have been linked to health and well-being as well as etiology and progression of a number of chronic diseases, including obesity, diabetes, cancer and neuropsychological pathologies. However, the exact role for the intestinal microbiome in maintaining health as well as in onset and progression of chronic diseases is still largely unknown. Diet has been identified as one of the main factors modulating the composition and function of the gut microbiome, although the mode of action is not fully understood. More research is needed to better understand how diet-related variations in the gut microbiota composition impact on health. In addition, the so far limited coordination and collaboration between the relevant scientific disciplines and research activities has been a stumbling block hampering a deeper understanding of this complex interplay.

Aims of the call

Using the ERA-Net Cofund instrument (named HDHL-INesTInal MICrobiomics - INTIMIC) the JPI HDHL aims to create an international network in the field of diet, intestinal microbiome and health. This co-funded call is the first implemented Joint Funding Action (JFA) in the frame of HDHL-INTIMIC. It is a joint transnational call, co-funded by the European Union (EU), aiming to fund the most excellent transnational research projects that address the causal relationship of diet, the intestinal microbiome and health.

The aim of the co-funded call within HDHL-INTIMIC is to support multinational, collaborative research projects that address important research questions regarding the cause-and-effect relationships between diet, the intestinal microbiome and human health.
In particular, proposals should focus on at least one of the following areas:

  1. the basic understanding of the gut microbiome and its causal role in human health and/or the onset of chronic diseases including the dissection of underlying molecular mechanisms
  2. the functional links between diet and/or dietary components on the composition and functioning of the gut microbiome and consequent physiological effects on the host, including individually tailored responses
  3. the identification of novel microbiome-targeted strategies and food products for preventive and therapeutic applications including personalised diets and specific food for specific target groups that operate by influencing the gut microbiome

The purpose of the Knowledge Hub (KH) was to increase and facilitate transnational communication, cooperation and coordination between individual researchers, research groups and research organisations in order to build a productive and sustainable competence network in the field of malnutrition.

Participating countries
CountryFunding OrganisationAbbreviation
Austria Federal Ministry of Science, Research and Economy BMWFW
Belgium * Institute for Agricultural and Fisheries Research ILVO
Belgium * Fund for Scientific Research FNRS
France French National Research Agency ANR
Germany Federal Ministry of Food and Agriculture represented by the Federal Office for Agriculture and Food BMEL represented by BLE
Germany Federal Ministry of Education and Research, represented by the Project Management Agency in the German Aerospace Center BMBF represented by DLR
Israel Ministry of Science, Technology and Space MoST
Italy Ministry of Education, University and Research MIUR
The Netherlands The Netherlands Organisation for Health Research and Development ZonMw
Spain National Institute of Health Carlos III ISCIII
Spain Ministry of Economy, Industry and Competitiveness MINECO
Sweden The Swedish Research Council Formas FORMAS

* Did not fund research projects in this call

Funded projects
MICRODIET Prof. Fredrik Bäckhed,
University of Gothenburg, Sweden
earlyFOOD Martin Larsen,
CIMI-Paris, France
MeaTic Carlotta De Filippo,
CNR, Italy
TransMic Prof. Mihai Netea and Quirijn de Mast,
Radboud University Nijmegen, The Netherlands
GUTMOM Patricia Iozzo,
CNR, Italy
Di-Mi-Liv Ina Bergheim,
University of Vienna, Austria
DiGuMet Prof. Rikard Landberg,
Chalmers University of Technology, Sweden
DIME Pascal Falter-Braun,
Helmholtz Zentrum München, Germany
FATMAL Rémy Burcelin,
Helmholtz Zentrum München, Germany
MEDIMACS Francisco Fernández-Avilés,
CIBER, Spain
OCTOPUS Giulia Chiesa,
Università degli Studi di Milano, Italy
More Information

Contact call Secretariat: DLR (Germany), nutrition-HDHL@dlr.de

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