INFOGEST static in vitro simulation of gastrointestinal food digestion
Journal article, 2019

Developing a mechanistic understanding of the impact of food structure and composition on human health has increasingly involved simulating digestion in the upper gastrointestinal tract. These simulations have used a wide range of different conditions that often have very little physiological relevance, and this impedes the meaningful comparison of results. The standardized protocol presented here is based on an international consensus developed by the COST INFOGEST network. The method is designed to be used with standard laboratory equipment and requires limited experience to encourage a wide range of researchers to adopt it. It is a static digestion method that uses constant ratios of meal to digestive fluids and a constant pH for each step of digestion. This makes the method simple to use but not suitable for simulating digestion kinetics. Using this method, food samples are subjected to sequential oral, gastric and intestinal digestion while parameters such as electrolytes, enzymes, bile, dilution, pH and time of digestion are based on available physiological data. This amended and improved digestion method (INFOGEST 2.0) avoids challenges associated with the original method, such as the inclusion of the oral phase and the use of gastric lipase. The method can be used to assess the endpoints resulting from digestion of foods by analyzing the digestion products (e.g., peptides/amino acids, fatty acids, simple sugars) and evaluating the release of micronutrients from the food matrix. The whole protocol can be completed in ~7 d, including ~5 d required for the determination of enzyme activities.



A. Brodkorb

Teagasc - Irish Agriculture and Food Development Authority

L. Egger

Forschungsanstalt Agroscope Changins-Wadenswil

Marie Alminger

Chalmers, Biology and Biological Engineering, Food and Nutrition Science

P. Alvito

University of Aveiro

Ricardo Assunção

University of Aveiro

S. Ballance


T. Bohn

Luxembourg Institute of Health

Claire Bourlieu-Lacanal

Montpellier SupAgro

R. Boutrou

Science et Technologie du Lait et de l'Oeuf (STLO)

F. Carriere

Centre national de la recherche scientifique (CNRS)

Alfonso Clemente

CSIC - Estación Experimental del Zaidín (EEZ)

M. Corredig

Aarhus University

D. Dupont

Science et Technologie du Lait et de l'Oeuf (STLO)

C. Dufour

Sécurité et Qualité des Produits d'Origine Végétale - (SQPOV)

Cathrina Edwards

Institute of Food Research

M. Golding

Massey University

S. Karakaya

Ege University

B. Kirkhus


S. Le Feunteun

Science et Technologie du Lait et de l'Oeuf (STLO)

U. Lesmes

Technion – Israel Institute of Technology

A. Macierzanka

Gdansk University of Technology

A. Mackie

University of Leeds

Carla Martins

University of Aveiro

S. Marze

National Institute of Agronomic Research (INRA)

D. J. McClements

University of Massachusetts

O. Menard

Science et Technologie du Lait et de l'Oeuf (STLO)

M. Minekus


Reto Portmann

Forschungsanstalt Agroscope Changins-Wadenswil

C. N. Santos

Nova University of Lisbon

Instituto de Biologia Experimental e Tecnologica

Isabelle Souchon

University Paris-Saclay

R. Paul Singh

University of California

G. E. Vegarud

Norwegian University of Life Sciences

M. S. J. Wickham

Reacta Biotech Limited

W. Weitschies

University of Greifswald

I. Recio

Institute of Food Science Research (CIAL)

Nature Protocols

1754-2189 (ISSN) 17502799 (eISSN)

Vol. 14 4 991-1014

Subject Categories


Medical Biotechnology (with a focus on Cell Biology (including Stem Cell Biology), Molecular Biology, Microbiology, Biochemistry or Biopharmacy)

Microbiology in the medical area

Areas of Advance

Life Science Engineering (2010-2018)





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