- Food compound: Any metabolite found in food items.
- Food compound metabolite: Metabolites of food compounds produced by mammalian metabolism or gut microbiota.
- Reference materials: Extracts from food items or biological samples that are expected to contain specific food compounds and/or their metabolites and could therefore serve as reference materials in their study.
FoodComEx (Food Compound Exchange) is a new chemical library initiated in the FoodBAll (Food Biomarkers Alliance) project to facilitate the sharing of food compounds, their metabolites and other reference materials.
FoodComEx is an online searchable catalog where laboratories that synthetize or isolate food compounds and their metabolites or generate reference materials can register the compounds that they are willing to share. FoodComEx is merely a virtual chemical library and the actual compounds/materials are kept at the laboratories where they have been produced.
Anyone interested in a given compound from the library will be able to contact the laboratory offering it. A bilateral negotiation will define the terms of collaboration, based on recommendations defined in the Charter of Good Practices. FoodComEx also intends to become a reference spectral library for food-derived compounds, with GC-MS, LS-MS, NMR, UV and IR spectral data shared by users and made searchable online.
A Virtual Board will also be created as a space where people can ask for specific compounds, so that others can offer to synthetize or isolate them. In addition, a section where researchers can share methods of synthesis and isolation of standards will be developed.
The intention of FoodComEx is to foster collaboration. The Users Directory will provide information on the activities of the scientists and laboratories active in the platform. The aim is to build bridges and promote partnerships between groups that are dedicated to synthesis and isolation of food compounds and metabolites and the scientists that need them.
FoodComEx can be used free of charge and is open to everyone.