The objective of the Biomarkers of Nutrition for Development (BOND) project is to provide state-of-the-art information and service with regard to selection, use, and interpretation of biomarkers of nutrient exposure, status, function, and effect. Specifically, the BOND project seeks to develop consensus on accurate assessment methodologies that are applicable to researchers (laboratory/clinical/surveillance), clinicians, programmers, and policy makers (data consumers). The BOND project is also intended to develop targeted research agendas to support the discovery and development of biomarkers through improved understanding of nutrient biology within relevant biologic systems. In phase I of the BOND project, 6 nutrients (iodine, vitamin A, iron, zinc, folate, and vitamin B-12) were selected for their high public health importance because they typify the challenges faced by users in the selection, use, and interpretation of biomarkers.
For each nutrient, an expert panel was constituted and charged with the development of a comprehensive review covering the respective nutrient's biology, existing biomarkers, and specific issues of use with particular reference to the needs of the individual user groups. In addition to the publication of these reviews, materials from each will be extracted to support the BOND interactive website.
This review represents the first in the series of reviews and covers all relevant aspects of iodine biology and biomarkers. The article is organized to provide the reader with a full appreciation of iodine's background history as a public health issue, its biology, and an overview of available biomarkers and specific considerations for the use and interpretation of iodine biomarkers across a range of clinical and population-based uses. The review also includes a detailed research agenda to address priority gaps in our understanding of iodine biology and assessment.