NIH GUIDE, Volume 21, Number 35, October 2, 1992

P.T.  34




National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute

The Nutrition Coordinating Center (NCC) at the University of Minnesota

is a unique national resource available for dietary data collection and

nutrient calculation for epidemiological studies, clinical trials, and

other medical research studies.  The center provides standardized

procedures for collecting food intake data and calculating nutrient

intakes at the high level of specificity needed for investigations of

the relationship between diet and disease.

Investigators can use the services of the NCC in two ways.  They can

license use of the Minnesota Nutrition Data System (NDS).  NDS is

microcomputer-based software for interactive dietary data collection

and nutrient calculation.  NDS prompts the user to describe food intake

at the level of detail required for dietary research and calculates the

nutrient content of the intake.  Then NDS presents the data on the

screen, in printed reports, or in ASCII files that can be merged with

other study data using statistical analysis software.  The NDS database

allows the user to describe over 150,000 foods and 6,000 brand name

products.  The database contains values for up to 93 nutrients,

including soluble and insoluble fiber fractions, 23 individual fatty

acids, and 18 amino acids.  NDS can be used to guide 24-hour dietary

recall interviews or to process food intake records.  NDS can also be

used to collect and analyze diet histories and to calculate the

nutrient content of recipes or menus.  A customized version of NDS is

being used in the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey

(NHANES III) to collect dietary data from more than 30,000 Americans.

Alternatively, investigators can send dietary intake records to NCC for

processing.  Data collection and processing procedures can be

customized to meet the needs of specific studies.  Investigators may

reanalyze data collected in the past to take advantage of improved

analytical data and new nutrients added to the database.  Over the past

18 years, NCC has processed more than 300,000 records.

NCC also provides a two-day training program for dietary interviewers.

For investigators who send dietary intake records to NCC for

processing, the training ensures the use of standardized data

collection procedures tailored to the research protocol.  Interviewers

are certified following satisfactory completion of the training program

and follow-up exercises.  For investigators using the NDS directly, the

training is designed to enhance use of the software to meet research

protocol requirements.  Over the past 18 years, NCC has trained and

certified more than 700 dietary interviewers.

NCC receives major support from the National Heart, Lung, and Blood

Institute, the National Cancer Institute, and the National Center for

Health Statistics.  NCC services and software are used by investigators

in academia, government, non-profit organizations, and industry.  Users

are required to pay a fee to cover part of the operational costs.

For information and fee schedules, contact Marilyn Buzzard, Ph.D.,

Director, Nutrition Coordinating Center, 2221 University Avenue, SE,

Suite 310, Minneapolis, MN 55414, telephone (612) 627-4869, FAX (612)



Abby Ershow, Sc.D.

Lipid Metabolism - Atherogenesis Branch

Division of Heart and Vascular Diseases

National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute

Bethesda, MD  20892

Telephone:  (301) 496-1681

FAX:  (301) 496-9882


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