ODS Update December 2022

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NIH ODS Update: A NEWSLETTER FOR HEALTH PROFESSIONALS - Strengthening Knowledge and Understanding of Dietary Supplements

December 2022

News You Can Use

Office of Dietary Supplements (ODS) Grants Program and Research Support

National surveys show that dietary supplements are used by about half of the U.S. population, especially adults older than 60. In 2021, supplement sales reached almost $60 billion. ODS has a congressional mandate to explore the potential of dietary supplements to improve health, promote scientific study of supplements in preventing chronic disease and other health conditions, and conduct and coordinate scientific research within the National Institutes of Health (NIH) relating to dietary supplements.

ODS co-funds research projects with 12 to 14 NIH Institutes annually. On average, ODS contributes $18 million per year to dietary supplement-related research. Patricia Haggerty, Ph.D., ODS’s Director of Grants and Extramural Activities, is enthusiastic about letting grantees and program officers know that ODS partners with NIH Institutes to co-fund peer-reviewed, approved projects that have a dietary supplement research component. What qualifies?

  • Research may have a supplement ingredient component, such as vitamins, minerals, herbs and botanicals, amino acids, micronutrients, phytochemicals, zoochemicals, or other dietary or bioactive substances and their extracts, concentrates, metabolites, and constituents.
  • Supplements must be administered orally in physiologically relevant forms and concentrations.
  • Qualifying scientific research includes basic, pre-clinical, translational, epidemiological, observational, behavioral, interventional, and non-interventional science.
  • Research can focus on health promotion, maintenance, or prevention in specific populations, such as people with HIV, the elderly, or people at risk of disease. However, research protocols that focus on disease treatment are not eligible.
portrait of Dr. Haggerty

ODS research funding priorities need to meet our mission and goals and can include nutrition across the lifespan; nutrition and chronic and noncommunicable diseases; micronutrient status assessment, bioavailability, biomarkers, and nutrient levels and their role in health and disease; transporter proteins; the microbiome; and the developmental origins of health and disease.

Dr. Haggerty explains, “While we cannot accept applications for research grants or be the primary funder, we do provide co-funding for new or renewed extramural projects and initiatives, interagency agreements with other federal agencies, intramural research, and research contracts that have relevance to dietary supplement products or their constituents and that pertain to ODS strategic goals."

 Patricia Haggerty 

For more information about the ODS Grants Program:


Examples of current ODS extramural initiative partnerships include:

An example of ODS collaboration on an intramural project is the Age-Related Eye Disease (AREDS)/AREDS2/Age-Related Macular Degeneration (AMD) research with the National Eye Institute.

ODS also partners with the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) to develop and maintain the Dietary Supplement Label Database, Dietary Supplement Ingredient Database, and the Iodine Content of Common Foods database.

In addition, ODS collaborates with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to support a component of the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey, and works with the National Institute of Standards and Technology on analytical methods and reference materials. ODS also supports an ongoing project with the Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences on dietary supplements to minimize heat injury.

ODS also awards administrative supplement funding to existing (parent) grants for dietary supplement research. Principal Investigators with an active NIH grant can propose to expand an existing project and apply for funding of up to $100,000 for an activity that will be completed within 1 year.

And ODS sponsors the Research Scholars Program, which supports intramural, early career, or junior researchers with at least 1 year of postdoctoral research experience who propose dietary supplement-related research with NIH intramural labs.



Funding Opportunities

See the list of ODS Program Announcements (PAs), Request For Applications (RFAs), and small business funding mechanisms.

Learn more about ODS’s funding opportunities and research programs.

Two-Day CARBON Meeting Held in September

Carbon Program Attendees

From Left to Right: T. Mir and J. Zhang, Univ. of Mississippi (Oxford); A. Calderón, Auburn Univ. (Alabama); J. MacMillan, Univ. of California (Santa Cruz); B. Sorkin (ODS); D. Kretschmar, Oregon Health & Science Univ. (Portland); A. Soumyanath, Oregon Health & Science Univ. (Portland); J. Huh, Univ. of Mississippi (Oxford); J. Cort, Pacific Northwest National Laboratory & Washington State Univ. (Richland); A. Chittiboyina, Univ. of Mississippi (Oxford).

The NIH CARBON Program held their annual meeting for grantees in the Natcher Building in Bethesda, MD, and via Zoom on September 29–30 with 22 in-person and 81 virtual attendees. CARBON is a joint effort of ODS and the National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health, with additional support from the National Institute on Aging. Researchers from the funded research centers and the pilot projects participate in an annual meeting to update each other and NIH staff on exciting new results, to discuss new research and research-related challenges, and to discuss potential new and ongoing inter-Center collaborations.

ODS Seminar Series


The ODS Seminar Series features webinars on research that’s relevant to dietary supplements and related topics. The seminars are virtual meetings. Contact ODS to receive viewing information.

Wednesday, December 14, 2022, 11:00 a.m. (ET)
Comparative Nutrigenomics to Select Appropriate Animal Models
Harry Dawson, Ph.D.—Research Chemist, Nutritionist; Diet, Genomics and Immunology Laboratory; USDA/Agricultural Research Service

Wednesday, January 11, 2023, 11:00 a.m. (ET)
Small-Quantity Lipid-Based Nutrient Supplements for the Prevention of Child Malnutrition
Kathryn Dewey, Ph.D.—Distinguished Professor Emerita, Department of Nutrition, Institute for Global Nutrition, University of California, Davis, CA

Wednesday, January 25, 2023, 11:00 a.m. (ET)
Aging – Immunology - DO-HEALTH
Heike Bischoff-Ferrari, Prof. Dr. med., Dr. PH—University of Zurich, Zurich, Switzerland

NIH Botanical Research Expert Panel Executive Summary

Last July, the NIH Botanical Research Expert Panel met to review strengths and weaknesses of the program, the focus of the current program, investigators and diversity, and ways to increase the impact of the Consortium for Advancing Research on Botanical and Other Natural Products. The Executive Summary is now available on our website.

New/Revised ODS Dietary Supplement Fact Sheets


Hand on Supplement
Stack of Journals

ODS Staff Publications

ODS staff members regularly publish scientific papers that address key issues in dietary supplement and related research. These are recent examples:

Crawford C, Brown LL, Costello RB, Deuster PA. Select dietary supplement ingredients for preserving and protecting the immune system in healthy individuals: a systematic review. Nutrients 2022, 14, 4604.

Sorkin BC, Murch SJ, Weaver CM, Jafari, M. Editorial: Plant foods and dietary supplements: building solid foundations for clinical trials. Front Nutr 2022: 9:881688. doi: 10.3389/fnut.2022.881688. eCollection 2022.


Microphone and megaphone

ODS in the Media

In September, Carol Haggans, M.S., R.D., was quoted in an online article from The Well News titled "Which vitamin and mineral supplements are better for you?"

In November, Ms. Haggans was quoted in an online National Geographic article titled “The truth about immune boosting supplements.”

About ODS

The Office of Dietary Supplements (ODS) is part of the National Institutes of Health (NIH), the nation’s medical research agency—supporting scientific studies that turn discovery into health.

Contact Us

Office of Dietary Supplements
National Institutes of Health
6705 Rockledge Drive (Rockledge I)
Room 730, MSC 7991
Bethesda, MD 20817

Email: ods@nih.gov
Website: https://ods.od.nih.gov