Professor Margaret Rayman has a doctorate in Inorganic Biochemistry from Somerville College, Oxford, and has held post-doctoral fellowships at the Institute of Cancer Research and Imperial College. Since 2007, she has been Professor of Nutritional Medicine at the University of Surrey where, in 1998, she set up, and now co-directs, the highly respected MSc Programme in Nutritional Medicine. In 2014, she was appointed Visiting Professor at the First Affiliated Hospital Xi’an Jiaotong University School of Medicine, Xi’an, China.
Her research, which includes a number of randomised controlled trials, centres on the importance of trace elements to human health with particular emphasis on selenium and iodine in populations with marginal selenium or iodine deficiency. She has published widely on the effects of selenium on human health including a number of highly cited reviews in The Lancet. As part of her extensive work on iodine, her group found a significant association between mild-to-moderate iodine deficiency in UK pregnant women of the ALSPAC cohort and poorer IQ and reading ability in the offspring at ages 8 and 9 (Lancet 2013).
She has been a judge for the BBC Radio 4 Food and Farming Awards on a number of occasions. She has produced a very successful evidence-based cookbook entitled “Healthy eating: the prostate care cookbook”, translated into three languages, and her next book, based on similar evidence-based principles, “Healthy eating to stay smart”, aimed at helping the public to reduce the risk of dementia, will appear in 2015.
Since returning from a lengthy career gap (20-years out of research), my work, has focussed on trace elements of importance to health, most notably selenium but also iron and more latterly, iodine (see selected publications below). I am interested in:
the effect of low selenium status on the risk of hypertensive conditions of pregnancy, most notably pre-eclampsia;
the effect of selenium and iodine status on auto-immune thyroid disease and on thyroid function in pregnancy (an RCT on the effect of selenium and iodine status on auto-immune thyroid disease in a low-selenium area of China is planned);
the effect of iodine status in pregnancy on cognitive, auditory and psychomotor development in the child and on pregnancy outcome.
I currently collaborate with academics at some 20 other universities and research institutes throughout the world.
BSc degree programmes in Nutrition, Nutrition & Dietetics, Nutrition & Food Science: lecture topics include selenium, iodine and manganese.
MSc Nutritional Medicine My major contribution to teaching in the University has been the creation of the very successful Nutritional Medicine post-graduate programme, the first (and still unique) university-level, evidence-based course in the UK designed for the in-service training of doctors and other health professionals in the use of nutritional methods of disease prophylaxis and management.
The Programme, of which I am Director, has now been running for 11 years during which time it has been extremely successful, achieving a high profile and excellent reputation. We draw a considerable number of students from Europe and from countries as far away as China, Canada and South Africa. Currently there are 155 registered part-time students, the majority of whom are practising clinicians, including consultants, and a substantial number of gastroenterologists.
I organise a number of MSc Nutritional Medicine modules and lecture on topics including selenium, iodine, osteo- and rheumatoid arthritis; diet and prostate cancer; pre-eclampsia.
You can read the menu for "The Antioxidant and Phytoprotectant Dinner" which forms part of the learning experience on the “Antioxidants and Phytoprotectants” module.
You can find information on Nutritional Medicine at here
Co-Director, Nutritional Medicine MSc Programme
Chair, Faculty of Health and Medical Sciences Research Ethics Committee
Registered Nutritionist (professional qualification of The Nutrition Society)
Active member of the Nutrition Society
Member of Council of the Nutrition Society from 2007-2010
Bath SC, Furmidge-Owen VL, Redman CW, Rayman MP.
(2015) 'Gestational changes in iodine status in a cohort study of pregnant women from the United Kingdom: season as an effect modifier.'. Am J Clin Nutr, United States: 101 (6), pp. 1180-1187.
Iodine, as a component of the thyroid hormones, is crucial for brain development and is therefore especially important during pregnancy when the brain is developing most rapidly. While randomised controlled trials of pregnant women in regions of severe iodine deficiency have shown that prenatal iodine deficiency causes impaired cognition, less is known of the effects in regions of mild deficiency. This is relevant to the UK as the World Health Organisation now classifies the UK as mildly iodine deficient, based on a national study of 14-15 year old schoolgirls in 2011. We have previously published a study using samples and data from the UK-based Avon Longitudinal Study of Parents and Children (ALSPAC) that found an association between low iodine status in early pregnancy (urinary iodine-to-creatinine ratio <150 μg/g) and lower verbal IQ and reading scores in the offspring. Though the women in ALSPAC were recruited in the early 1990s, the results of the study are still relevant as their iodine status was similar to that reported in recent studies of UK pregnant women. This review discusses the evidence that mild-to-moderate iodine deficiency during pregnancy has deleterious effects on child neurodevelopment and relates that evidence to the data on iodine status in the UK. It has highlighted a need for nationwide data on iodine status of pregnant women and that a randomised controlled trial of iodine supplementation in pregnant women in a region of mild-to-moderate iodine deficiency with child outcomes as the primary endpoint is required.
Rayman MP, Bath SC, Mao J, Westaway J, Vanderlelie JJ, Perkins AV, Williams P, Redman CWG.
(2015) 'Selenium status in UK pregnant women and its relationship with hypertensive conditions of pregnancy'. British Journal of Nutrition, 113 (2), pp. 249-258.
Rayman MP, Bath SC, Westaway J, Williams P, Mao J, Vanderlelie JJ, Perkins AV, Redman CW.
(2015) 'Selenium status in UK pregnant women and its relationship with hypertensive conditions of pregnancy.'. Br J Nutr, , pp. 1-10.
Mousavi M, Heidari E, Tavallaie S, Shakeri MT, Ghayour-Mobarhan M, Rayman MP, Tara F, Boskabadi H, Maamouri G, Mohammadi S, Ferns G.
(2015) 'Efects of selenium supplementation on soluble fms-like tyrosine kinase-1 and glutathione peroxidase levels and the plasminogen activator inhibitor-1: Plasminogen activator inhibitor-2 ratio in pregnant women'. Shiraz E Medical Journal, 16 (3)
Mao J, Pop VJ, Bath SC, Vader HL, Redman CW, Rayman MP.
(2014) 'Effect of low-dose selenium on thyroid autoimmunity and thyroid function in UK pregnant women with mild-to-moderate iodine deficiency.'. Eur J Nutr,
Bath SC, Sleeth ML, McKenna M, Walter A, Taylor A, Rayman MP.
(2014) 'Iodine intake and status of UK women of childbearing age recruited at the University of Surrey in the winter.'. Br J Nutr, England: 112 (10), pp. 1715-1723.
As intra-thyroidal iodine stores should be maximised before conception to facilitate the increased thyroid hormone production during pregnancy, women who are planning to become pregnant should ideally consume 150 μg iodine/d (US RDA). As few UK data exist for this population group, a cross-sectional study was carried out at the University of Surrey to assess the iodine intake and status of women of childbearing age. Total iodine excretion was measured from 24 h urine samples in fifty-seven women; iodine intake was estimated by assuming that 90 % of ingested iodine was excreted. The average iodine intake was also estimated from 48 h food diaries that the participants completed. The median urinary iodine concentration value (63·1 μg/l) indicated the group to be mildly iodine deficient by WHO criteria. By contrast, the median 24 h urinary iodine excretion value (149·8 μg/24 h) indicated a relatively low risk of iodine deficiency. The median estimated iodine intake, extrapolated from urinary excretion, was 167 μg/d, whereas it was lower, at 123 μg/d, when estimated from the 48 h food diaries. Iodine intake estimated from the food diaries and 24 h urinary iodine excretion were strongly correlated (r 0·75, P< 0·001). The intake of milk, eggs and dairy products was positively associated with iodine status. The iodine status of this UK cohort is probably a best-case scenario as the women were mostly nutrition students and were recruited in the winter when milk-iodine content is at its highest; further study in more representative cohorts of UK women is required. The present study highlights the need for revised cut-off values for iodine deficiency that are method- and age group-specific.
Rayman MP, Bodman-Smith K, Bath SC, Mao J, Searle E, Redman CWG, Kelly L, Johnsen S.
(2014) 'Effect of selenium on markers of risk of pre-eclampsia in UK pregnant women: A randomised, controlled pilot trial'. British Journal of Nutrition, 112 (1), pp. 99-111.
Conaghan PG, Kingsbury SR, Porcheret M, Gammon A, Soni A, Hurley M, Rayman MP, Barlow J, Hull RG, Cumming J, Llewelyn K, Moscogiuri F, Lyons J, Birrell F.
(2014) 'Impact and therapy of osteoarthritis: the Arthritis Care OA Nation 2012 survey'. Clinical Rheumatology,
Bath SC, Walter A, Taylor A, Wright J, Rayman MP.
(2014) 'Iodine deficiency in pregnant women living in the South East of the UK: The influence of diet and nutritional supplements on iodine status'. British Journal of Nutrition, 111 (9), pp. 1622-1631.
Rayman MP, Searle E, Kelly L, Johnsen S, Bodman-Smith K, Bath SC, Mao J, Redman CW.
(2014) 'Effect of selenium on markers of risk of pre-eclampsia in UK pregnant women: a randomised, controlled pilot trial.'. Br J Nutr, England: 112 (1), pp. 99-111.
Geybels MS, van den Brandt PA, Schouten LJ, van Schooten FJ, van Breda SG, Rayman MP, Green FR, Verhage BA.
(2014) 'Selenoprotein Gene Variants, Toenail Selenium Levels, and Risk of Advanced Prostate Cancer.'. J Natl Cancer Inst,
Bath SC, Walter A, Taylor A, Wright J, Rayman MP.
(2014) 'Iodine deficiency in pregnant women living in the South East of the UK: the influence of diet and nutritional supplements on iodine status'. British Journal of Nutrition, , pp. 1-10.
Bath SC, Rayman MP.
(2014) 'Development of an evidenced-based iodine food fact sheet for use in the UK'. European Journal of Nutrition and Food Safety, 4 (3)
Furmidge-Owen V, Bath SC, Redman CWG, Rayman MP.
(2014) 'A longitudinal study of iodine status throughout gestation in UK women'. CAMBRIDGE UNIV PRESS PROCEEDINGS OF THE NUTRITION SOCIETY, 73 (OCE1), pp. E38-E38.
Rayman MP, Stranges S.
(2014) 'How can we understand the epidemiology of selenium and type-2 diabetes?'. Selenium in the Environment and Human Health - Proceedings of the 3rd International Conference on Selenium in the Environment and Human Health, , pp. 52-54.
Rayman MP, Stranges S.
(2013) 'Epidemiology of selenium and type 2 diabetes: Can we make sense of it?'. Free Radical Biology and Medicine, 65, pp. 1557-1564.
Spina A, Tigbe W, Kandala N-B, Stranges S, Guallar E, Rayman MP.
(2013) 'Anthropometric indices and selenium status in British adults: The U.K. National Diet and Nutrition Survey'. Free Radical Biology and Medicine, 65, pp. 1315-1321.
Bath SC, Rayman MP, Steer CD, Golding J, Emmett P.
(2013) 'Effect of inadequate iodine status in UK pregnant women on cognitive outcomes in their children: results from the Avon Longitudinal Study of Parents and Children (ALSPAC)'. The Lancet,
Mao J, Bath SC, Pop VJM, Vader HL, Redman CWG, Rayman MP.
(2013) 'Effect of Selenium Supplementation on Thyroid Function in UK Pregnant Women: a Randomised, Controlled Pilot Trial'. CAMBRIDGE UNIV PRESS PROCEEDINGS OF THE NUTRITION SOCIETY, 72 (OCE4), pp. E293-E293.
Bath SC, Rayman MP, Steer CD, Golding J, Emmett P.
(2013) 'Effect of inadequate iodine status in UK pregnant women on cognitive outcomes in their children: Results from the Avon Longitudinal Study of Parents and Children (ALSPAC)'. The Lancet, 382 (9889), pp. 331-337.
Emmett P, Bath S, Steer C, Golding J, Rayman M.
(2013) 'IODINE STATUS'. KARGER ANNALS OF NUTRITION AND METABOLISM, 63, pp. 75-76.
Bath SC, Steer CD, Emmett PM, Golding J, Rayman MP.
(2013) 'DOES MATERNAL IODINE STATUS IN UK PREGNANT WOMEN INFLUENCE CHILD NEURODEVELOPMENT?'. KARGER ANNALS OF NUTRITION AND METABOLISM, 63, pp. 1865-1865.
Bath SC, Steer CD, Emmett PM, Golding J, Rayman MP.
(2013) 'Dietary factors that influence maternal iodine status in UK pregnant women'. CAMBRIDGE UNIV PRESS PROCEEDINGS OF THE NUTRITION SOCIETY, 72 (OCE4), pp. E292-E292.
Conaghan PG, Porcheret M, Gammon A, Soni A, Hurley M, Rayman M, Barlow J, Hull RG, Cumming J, Llewelyn K, Moscogiuri F, Lyons J, Birrell F.
(2012) 'THE PERSONAL IMPACT OF OSTEOARTHRITIS ON INDIVIDUALS AND HOW THEY USE THERAPIES: THE ARTHRITIS CARE OA NATION 2012 SURVEY'. BMJ PUBLISHING GROUP ANNALS OF THE RHEUMATIC DISEASES, 71, pp. 584-584.
(2012) 'Selenium and human health.'. Lancet, England: 379 (9822), pp. 1256-1268.
Boskabadi H, Maamouri G, Rezagholizade Omran F, Mafinejad S, Tara F, Rayman MP, Ghayour-Mobarhan M, Sahebkar A, Tavallaie S, Mohammadi M, Ghayour-Mobarhan M, Tavallaie S, Mohammadi M, Sahebkar A, Shakeri MT, Ferns GA.
(2012) 'Effect of Prenatal Selenium Supplementation on Cord Blood Selenium and Lipid Profile'. Pediatrics and Neonatology,
Pinto A, Sies H, Steinbrenner H, Juniper DT, Clark L, Sanil M, Morgan L, Rayman MP.
(2012) 'Supranutritional selenium induces alterations in molecular targets related to energy metabolism in skeletal muscle and visceral adipose tissue of pigs'. Journal of Inorganic Biochemistry, 114, pp. 47-54.
Rayman MP, Blundell-Pound G, Pastor-Barriuso R, Guallar E, Steinbrenner H, Stranges S.
(2012) 'A randomized trial of selenium supplementation and risk of type-2 diabetes, as assessed by plasma adiponectin.'. PLoS One, United States: 7 (9)
Rayman MP, Stranges S, Griffin BA, Pastor-Barriuso R, Guallar E.
(2011) 'Effect of Supplementation With High-Selenium Yeast on Plasma Lipids A Randomized Trial'. AMER COLL PHYSICIANS ANNALS OF INTERNAL MEDICINE, 154 (10), pp. 656-W240.
Stranges S, Tabak AG, Guallar E, Rayman MP, Akbaraly TN, Laclaustra M, Alfthan G, Mussalo-Rauhamaa H, Viikari JSA, Raitakari OT, Kivimaki M.
(2011) 'Selenium status and blood lipids: the cardiovascular risk in young finns study'. JOURNAL OF INTERNAL MEDICINE, 270 (5), pp. 469-477.
Rayman MP, Wijnen H, Vader H, Kooistra L, Pop V.
(2011) 'Maternal selenium status during early gestation and risk for preterm birth'. CMA-CANADIAN MEDICAL ASSOC CANADIAN MEDICAL ASSOCIATION JOURNAL, 183 (5), pp. 549-555.
Bath SC, Button S, Rayman MP.
(2011) 'Iodine concentration of organic and conventional milk: implications for iodine intake'. Cambridge University Press British Journal of Nutrition, 107 (7), pp. 935-940.
Iodine is required for adequate thyroid hormone production, which is essential for brain development, particularly in the first trimester of pregnancy. Milk is the principal source of iodine in UK diets, and while small studies in Europe have shown organic milk to have a lower iodine concentration than conventional milk, no such study has been conducted in Britain. In view of the increasing popularity of organic milk in the UK, we aimed to compare the iodine concentration of retail organic and conventional milk and to evaluate regional influences in iodine levels. Samples of organic milk (n 92) and conventional milk (n 80), purchased from retail outlets in sixteen areas of the UK (southern England, Wales and Northern Ireland), were analysed for iodine using inductively coupled plasma MS. The region of origin of the milk was determined from information on the label. Organic milk was 42·1 % lower in iodine content than conventional milk (median iodine concentration 144·5 v. 249·5 ng/g; P < 0·001). There was no difference in the iodine concentration of either conventional or organic milk by area of purchase. However, a difference was seen in iodine concentration of organic milk by region of origin (P < 0·001). The lower iodine concentration of organic milk has public-health implications, particularly in view of emerging evidence of iodine deficiency in UK population sub-groups, including pregnant women. Individuals who choose organic milk should be aware that their iodine intake may be compromised and should ensure adequate iodine intake from alternative sources.
Rayman MP, Wijnen H, Vader H, Kooistra L, Pop V.
(2011) 'Maternal selenium status during early gestation and risk for Preterm Birth'. Obstetrical and Gynecological Survey, 66 (7), pp. 400-401.
Bath S, Button S, Rayman MP.
(2011) 'Summer Meeting, 4-6 July 2011, 70th Anniversary: From plough through practice to policy Abstracts'. CAMBRIDGE UNIV PRESS PROCEEDINGS OF THE NUTRITION SOCIETY, 70 (OCE4), pp. E117-E117.
Use of selenium enriched foods, supplements and fertilizers has increased markedly in recent years in the US and other Western countries because of the perception that the anti-oxidant properties of selenium could potentially reduce the risk of cancer and other chronic diseases. However, concern has been raised recently about possible adverse cardiometabolic effects of high selenium exposure, including an increased risk of diabetes and hyperlipidemia with high selenium intake. Hence, from a public health perspective, the relationship between selenium status and cardiometabolic health should be clarified in order to help guide consumers in their choices of nutritional supplements and enriched food products. Additional experimental evidence is needed to provide new insights into the role of selenium and of specific selenoproteins in human biology, especially to clarify the underlying mechanisms linking selenium to chronic disease endpoints. Further epidemiological studies and randomized clinical trials across populations with different selenium status should be conducted to determine the causal effect of selenium on cardiovascular disease and risk factors. Nevertheless, at the present time the widespread use of selenium supplements or other strategies that artificially increase selenium status above the level required for optimal selenoprotein activity is not justified and should not be encouraged
Kassianos A, Raats M, Rayman M, Gage H.
(2010) 'Information needs and information-seeking behaviour'. TAYLOR & FRANCIS LTD PSYCHOLOGY & HEALTH, 25 (Supplement 1), pp. 250-251.
Mokhber N, Namjoo M, Tara F, Boskabadi H, Rayman MP, Ghayour-Mobarhan M, Sahebkar A, Majdi MR, Tavallaie S, Azimi-Nezhad M, Shakeri MT, Nematy M, Oladi M, Mohammadi M, Ferns G.
(2010) 'Effect of supplementation with selenium on postpartum depression: a randomized double-blind placebo-controlled trial'. INFORMA HEALTHCARE JOURNAL OF MATERNAL-FETAL & NEONATAL MEDICINE, 24 (1), pp. 104-108.
Tara F, Maamouri G, Rayman MP, Ghayour-Mobarhan M, Sahebkar A, Yazarlu O, Ouladan S, Tavallaie S, Azimi-Nezhad M, Shakeri MT, Boskabadi H, Oladi M, Sangani MT, Razavi BS, Ferns G.
(2010) 'SELENIUM SUPPLEMENTATION AND THE INCIDENCE OF PREECLAMPSIA IN PREGNANT IRANIAN WOMEN: A RANDOMIZED, DOUBLE-BLIND, PLACEBO-CONTROLLED PILOT TRIAL'. ELSEVIER TAIWAN TAIWAN J OBSTET GYNE, 49 (2), pp. 181-187.
Boskabadi H, Omran FR, Tara F, Rayman MP, Ghayour-Mobarhan M, Sahebkar A, Tavallaie S, Shakeri MT, Alamdari DH, Kiani M, Razavi BS, Oladi M, Ferns G.
(2010) 'The Effect of Maternal Selenium Supplementation on Pregnancy Outcome and the Level of Oxidative Stress in Neonates'. IRANIAN RES CRESCENT SOC IRANIAN RED CRESCENT MEDICAL JOURNAL, 12 (3), pp. 254-259.
Akbaraly TN, Arnaud J, Rayman MP, Hininger-Favier I, Roussel A-M, Berr C, Fontbonne A.
(2010) 'Plasma selenium and risk of dysglycemia in an elderly French population: results from the prospective Epidemiology of Vascular Ageing Study'. BIOMED CENTRAL LTD NUTRITION & METABOLISM, 7 Article number ARTN 21
Tara F, Rayman MP, Boskabadi H, Ghayour-Mobarhan M, Sahebkar A, Yazarlu O, Ouladan S, Tavallaie S, Azimi-Nezhad M, Shakeri MT, Teymoori MS, Razavi BS, Oladi M, Ferns G.
(2010) 'Selenium supplementation and premature (pre-labour) rupture of membranes: A randomised double-blind placebo-controlled trial'. INFORMA HEALTHCARE JOURNAL OF OBSTETRICS AND GYNAECOLOGY, 30 (1), pp. 30-34.
Tara F, Rayman MP, Boskabadi H, Ghayour-Mobarhan M, Sahebkar A, Alamdari DH, Razavi BS, Tavallaie S, Azimi-Nezhad M, Shakeri MT, Oladi M, Yazarlu O, Ouladan S, Sangani MT, Omran FR, Ferns G.
(2010) 'Prooxidant-antioxidant balance in pregnancy: a randomized double-blind placebo-controlled trial of selenium supplementation'. WALTER DE GRUYTER & CO JOURNAL OF PERINATAL MEDICINE, 38 (5), pp. 473-478.
Stranges S, Laclaustra M, Ji C, Cappuccio FP, Navas-Acien A, Ordovas JM, Rayman M, Guallar E.
(2010) 'Higher Selenium Status is Associated with Adverse Blood Lipid Profile in British Adults'. AMER SOC NUTRITIONAL SCIENCE JOURNAL OF NUTRITION, 140 (1), pp. 81-87.
Knowledge of the plasma selenium levels associated with optimised concentration or activity of specific selenoproteins can provide considerable insights from epidemiological data on the possible involvement of those selenoproteins in health, most notably with respect to cancer. For cohort studies, if selenoproteins such as glutathione peroxidase and selenoprotein P are relevant to cancer, one might only expect to see an effect on risk when the concentrations in the cohort range from below, to above, the level needed to optimise the activity or concentration of these enzymes. Similarly, trials would only show a beneficial effect of supplementation if selenium status were raised from below, to above, the optimal concentration for the selenoproteins likely to be implicated in cancer risk, as occurred in the NPC trial but not in SELECT. The most powerful evidence for the involvement of selenoproteins in human health comes from epidemiological studies that have related single nucleotide polymorphisms in selenoproteins to disease risk. The totality of the evidence currently implicates GPx1, GPx4, SEPS1, Sep15, SEPP1 and TXNRD1 in conditions such as cardiovascular disease, pre-eclampsia and cancer. Future studies therefore need to determine not only selenium status, but genotype, both in selenoproteins and related pathways, when investigating the relationship of selenium with disease risk.
Rayman MP, Combs GF, Waters DJ.
(2009) 'Selenium and Vitamin E Supplementation for Cancer Prevention'. AMER MEDICAL ASSOC JAMA-J AM MED ASSOC, 301 (18), pp. 1876-1876.
Cooper ML, Adami H-O, Gronberg H, Wiklund F, Green FR, Rayman MP.
(2008) 'Interaction between Single Nucleotide Polymorphisms in Selenoprotein P and Mitochondrial Superoxide Dismutase Determines Prostate Cancer Risk'. AMER ASSOC CANCER RESEARCH CANCER RESEARCH, 68 (24), pp. 10171-10177.
Bekaert B, Cooper ML, Green FR, McNulty H, Pentieva K, Scott JM, Molloy AM, Rayman MP.
(2008) 'Effect of selenium status and supplementation with high-selenium yeast on plasma homocysteine and B vitamin concentrations in the UK elderly'. WILEY-V C H VERLAG GMBH MOLECULAR NUTRITION & FOOD RESEARCH, 52 (11), pp. 1324-1333.
There is a growing appreciation that it is not just the total intake of dietary selenium (Se)
that is important to health but that the species of Se ingested may also be important. This review attempts to catalogue what is known about Se species in food sources and supplements and the
health effects in which they are implicated. The biosynthetic pathways involved in Se assimilation
by plants and the way in which Se species are metabolized in animals are presented in order to give
an insight into the species likely to be present in plant and animal foods. Known data on the species
of Se in the food chain and in food supplements are tabulated along with their concentrations and
the analytical methodology used. The latter is important since identification that is only based on
retention time matching with authentic standards must be considered as tentative: for evidence of
structural confirmation, fragmentation of the molecular ion in addition to MS data is required.
Bioavailability, as normally defined, is higher for organic Se species. Health effects, both
beneficial and toxic, thought to be associated with specific Se species are described. Potent antitumour effects have been attributed to the low-molecular-weight species, Se-methyl-selenocysteine
and its γ-glutamyl-derivative, found in a number of edible plants of the Allium and Brassica
families. There remain considerable gaps in our knowledge of the forms of Se that naturally occur
in foods. Without adequate knowledge of Se speciation, false conclusions may be drawn when
assessing Se requirements for optimal health.
(2008) 'Food-chain selenium and human health: emphasis on intake'. CAMBRIDGE UNIV PRESS BRITISH JOURNAL OF NUTRITION, 100 (2), pp. 254-268.
Dietary advice and intervention clearly have a place in rheumatology and allow patients to
have some control over their own disease. Although there is no evidence for efficacy of
‘fad’ diets, 30–40% of rheumatoid patients can benefit from excluding foods individually identified
during the reintroduction phase of an elimination diet. A proportion of patients who follow
a vegetarian or Mediterranean-type diet will experience benefit. Patients who are either
overweight or obese should participate in weight-loss programmes. Those with osteoarthritis
need to concentrate on reducing fat mass while maintaining muscle mass. Arthritic patients,
other than those with gout, should increase their intake of oily fish and additionally supplement
with fish oil for up to 3 months to see whether they experience benefit. All arthritic
patients, particularly those with inflammatory disease, should be advised to ensure a good dietary
intake of antioxidants, copper and zinc. Supplementation with selenium and vitamin D
may be advisable.
Nichols JAA, Curtis EPP, Rayman MP, Taylor A.
(2008) 'A survey to estimate total nutrient intake at conception - Dietary and supplementary'. Journal of Nutritional and Environmental Medicine, 17 (1), pp. 12-43.
Nichols JAA, Curtis EPP, Rayman MP.
(2008) 'Survey of total folate intake at conception and assessment of impact of fortification'. Journal of Nutritional and Environmental Medicine, 17 (1), pp. 44-55.
Bath SC, Walter A, Taylor A, Rayman MP.
(2008) 'Iodine status of UK women of childbearing age'. Journal of Human Nutrition and Dietetics, 21, pp. 379-380.
Shaheen SO, Newson RB, Rayman MP, Wong AP-L, Tumilty MK, Phillips JM, Potts JF, Kelly FJ, White PT, Burney PGJ.
(2007) 'Randomised, double blind, placebo-controlled trial of selenium supplementation in adult asthma'. B M J PUBLISHING GROUP THORAX, 62 (6), pp. 483-490.
Rayman M, Angus F, Goenaga-Infante H.
(2007) 'Bioavailability and speciation of selenium from selenium-enriched mushrooms'. CAMBRIDGE UNIV PRESS PROCEEDINGS OF THE NUTRITION SOCIETY, 66, pp. 55A-55A.
Halliwell B, Stocker R, Coates PM, Aggett PJ, Manach C, Azzi A, Rayman M, Russell RM, Alexander J, Shekelle P.
(2007) 'Discussion'. Novartis Foundation Symposium, 282, pp. 87-92.
Aggett PJ, Alexander J, Azzi A, Boobis AR, Coates PM, Yetley EA, Manach C, Przyrembel H, Rayman M, Scott JM, Stocker R, Taylor CL, Yong EL.
(2007) 'Final discussion'. Novartis Foundation Symposium, 282, pp. 212-218.
Rayman M, Scott JM, Aggett PJ, Wharton B, Taylor CL, Yetley EA, Boobis AR, Halliwell B, Katan MB, Ernst E.
(2007) 'Discussion'. Novartis Foundation Symposium, 282, pp. 117-122.
Aggett PJ, Azzi A, Ernst E, Halliwell B, Katan MB, Klein M, Rayman M, Russell RM, Scott JM, Taylor CL, Yetley EA.
(2007) 'Discussion'. Novartis Foundation Symposium, 282, pp. 167-172.
Azzi A, Russell RM, Scott JM, Yetley EA, Coates PM, Halliwell B, Rayman M, Boobis AR, Katan MB, Cashman KD, Taylor CL, Shekelle P, Ernst E, Przyrembel H, Wharton B, Aggett PJ.
(2007) 'Discussion'. Novartis Foundation Symposium, 282, pp. 36-45.
Russell RM, Yetley EA, Coates PM, Halliwell B, Przyrembel H, Eu LY, Taylor CL, Rayman M, Katan MB, Ernst E, Scott JM, Aggett PJ, Azzi A, Boobis AR.
(2007) 'Discussion'. Novartis Foundation Symposium, 282, pp. 69-76.
Rayman M, Azzi A, Stocker R, Alexander J, Halliwell B, Aggett PJ, Przyrembel H, Cashman KD.
(2007) 'Discussion'. Novartis Foundation Symposium, 282, pp. 149-153.
Katan MB, Cashman KD, Russell RM, Alexander J, Manach C, Scott JM, Wharton B, Aggett PJ, Przyrembel H, Rayman M.
(2007) 'Discussion'. Novartis Foundation Symposium, 282, pp. 138-142.
Rayman M, Thompson A, Warren-Perry M, Galassini R, Catterick J, Hall E, Lawrence D, Bliss J.
(2006) 'Impact of selenium on mood and quality of life: a randomized, controlled trial.'. Biol Psychiatry, United States: 59 (2), pp. 147-154.
Selenium is known to be important to the brain. Three small, published studies have suggested an effect of selenium supplementation or deprivation on mood in healthy volunteers. We investigated these findings on a much larger scale.
Infante HG, O'Connor G, Rayman M, Hearn R, Cook K.
(2006) 'Simultaneous identification of selenium-containing glutathione species in selenised yeast by on-line HPLC with ICP-MS and electrospray ionisation quadrupole time of flight (QTOF)-MS/MS'. ROYAL SOC CHEMISTRY JOURNAL OF ANALYTICAL ATOMIC SPECTROMETRY, 21 (11), pp. 1256-1263.
Selenium (Se) is an unusual trace element in having its own codon in mRNA that specifies its
insertion into selenoproteins as selenocysteine (Sec), by means of a mechanism requiring a
large Sec-insertion complex. This exacting insertion machinery for selenoprotein production
has implications for our Se requirements for cancer prevention. If Se may protect against
cancer, an adequate intake of Se is desirable. However, the level of intake in Europe and
some parts of the world is not adequate for full expression of protective selenoproteins. The
evidence for Se as a cancer preventive agent includes that from geographic, animal,
prospective and intervention studies. Newly-published prospective studies on oesophageal,
gastric-cardia and lung cancer have reinforced previous evidence which is particularly strong
for prostate cancer. Interventions with Se have shown benefit in reducing the risk of cancer
incidence and mortality in all cancers combined, and specifically in liver, prostate, colorectal
and lung cancers. The effect seemed to be strongest in those with the lowest Se status. As the
level of Se that appears to be required for optimal effect is higher than that previously
understood to be required to maximise the activity of selenoenzymes, the question has been
raised as to whether selenoproteins are involved in the anti-cancer process. However, recent
evidence showing an association between Se, reduction of DNA damage and oxidative stress
together with data showing an effect of selenoprotein genotype on cancer risk implies that
selenoproteins are indeed implicated. The likelihood of simultaneous and consecutive effects
at different cancer stages still allows an important role for anti-cancer Se metabolites such as
methyl selenol formed from γ-glutamyl-selenomethyl-selenocysteine and selenomethylselenocysteine,
components identified in certain plants and Se-yeast that have anti-cancer
effects. There is some evidence that Se may affect not only cancer risk but also progression
and metastasis. Current primary and secondary prevention trials of Se are underway in the
USA including the SELECT prostate cancer trial, though a large European trial is still
desirable given the likelihood of a stronger effect in populations of lower Se status.
Jenkins M, Rayman M.
(2005) 'Nutrient intake is unrelated to nutrient status in patients with chronic fatigue syndrome'. Journal of Nutritional and Environmental Medicine, 15 (4), pp. 177-189.
Rayman MP, Infante HG.
(2005) 'Selenium-enriched yeast as a nutritional supplement: bioavailability, toxicology, efficacy and new identification of an anti-cancer component'. CAMBRIDGE UNIV PRESS PROCEEDINGS OF THE NUTRITION SOCIETY, 64, pp. 91A-91A.
(2004) 'The use of high-selenium yeast to raise selenium status: how does it measure up?'. Cambridge University Press BRIT J NUTR, 92 (4), pp. 557-573.
Selenium-enriched yeast (Se-yeast) is a common form of selenium used to supplement dietary
intake of this important trace mineral. However, its availability within the EU is under threat owing
to concerns expressed by the EC Scientific Committee on Food that Se-yeast supplements are
poorly characterised and could potentially cause the build up of selenium in tissues to toxic levels.
This review examines the validity of these concerns. Diagrams of the biosynthesis and metabolism
of selenium compounds show which species can be expected to occur in Se-yeast preparations. Seyeast
manufacture is described together with quality control measures applied by reputable
manufacturers. The way in which speciation of Se-yeast is achieved is explained and results on
amounts of selenium species in various commercial products are tabulated. In all cases described,
selenomethionine is the largest single species, accounting for 54-74% of total selenium. Se-yeast is
capable of increasing the activity of the selenoenzymes and its bioavailability has been found to be
higher than that of inorganic selenium sources in all but one study. Intervention studies with Seyeast
have shown the benefit of this form in cancer prevention, immune response and HIV
infection. Of around one dozen supplementation studies, none has shown evidence of toxicity even
up to an intake level of 800 μg/d selenium over a period of years. It is concluded that Se-yeast from
reputable manufacturers is adequately characterised, of reproducible quality, and that there is no
evidence of toxicity even at levels far above the EC Tolerable Upper Intake Level of 300 μg/d.
Rayman MP, Bode P, Redman CWG.
(2004) 'Low selenium is associated with the occurrence of preeclampsia in women from the United Kingdom - Reply'. MOSBY-ELSEVIER AMERICAN JOURNAL OF OBSTETRICS AND GYNECOLOGY, 191 (2), pp. 676-677.
Infante HG, O'Connor G, Rayman M, Wahlen R, Entwisle J, Norris P, Hearn R, Catterick T.
(2004) 'Selenium speciation analysis of selenium-enriched supplements by HPLC with ultrasonic nebulisation ICP-MS and electrospray MS/MS detection'. ROYAL SOC CHEMISTRY JOURNAL OF ANALYTICAL ATOMIC SPECTROMETRY, 19 (12), pp. 1529-1538.
Makris A, Thornton C, Hennessy A, Rayman MP, Bode P, Redman CWG.
(2004) 'Low selenium is associated with the occurrence of preeclampsia in women from the United Kingdom  (multiple letters)'. American Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology, 191 (2), pp. 676-677.
Larsen EH, Hansen M, Paulin H, Moesgaard S, Reid M, Rayman M.
(2004) 'Speciation and bioavailability of selenium in yeast-based intervention agents used in cancer chemoprevention studies'. AOAC INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF AOAC INTERNATIONAL, 87 (1), pp. 225-232.
Rayman MP, Bode P, Redman CWG.
(2003) 'Low selenium status is associated with the occurrence of the pregnancy disease preeclampsia in women from the United Kingdom'. MOSBY, INC AM J OBSTET GYNECOL, 189 (5), pp. 1343-1349.
(2002) 'Se brought to earth'. ROYAL SOC CHEMISTRY CHEMISTRY IN BRITAIN, 38 (10), pp. 28-31.
Rayman MP, Barlis J, Evans RW, Redman CWG, King LJ.
(2002) 'Abnormal iron parameters in the pregnancy syndrome preeclampsia'. MOSBY, INC AMERICAN JOURNAL OF OBSTETRICS AND GYNECOLOGY, 187 (2), pp. 412-418.
The essential trace mineral, selenium, is of fundamental importance to human health. As a constituent of selenoproteins, selenium has structural and enzymic roles, in the latter context being best-known as an antioxidant and catalyst for the production of active thyroid hormone. Selenium is needed for the proper functioning of the immune system, and appears to be a key nutrient in counteracting the development of virulence and inhibiting HIV progression to AIDS. It is required for sperm motility and may reduce the risk of miscarriage. Deficiency has been linked to adverse mood states. Findings have been equivocal in linking selenium to cardiovascular disease risk although other conditions involving oxidative stress and inflammation have shown benefits of a higher selenium status. An elevated selenium intake may be associated with reduced cancer risk. Large clinical trials are now planned to confirm or refute this hypothesis. In the context of these health effects, low or diminishing selenium status in some parts of the world, notably in some European countries, is giving cause for concern.
AbouShakra FR, Rayman MP, Ward NI, Hotton V, Bastian G.
(1997) 'Enzymatic digestion for the determination of trace elements in blood serum by inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry'. ROYAL SOC CHEMISTRY JOURNAL OF ANALYTICAL ATOMIC SPECTROMETRY, 12 (4), pp. 429-433.
(1997) 'Dietary selenium: Time to act - Low bioavailability in Britain and Europe could be contributing to cancers, cardiovascular disease, and subfertility'. BRITISH MED JOURNAL PUBL GROUP BRIT MED J, 314 (7078), pp. 387-388.
Rayman MP, AbouShakra FR, Ward NI.
(1996) 'Determination of selenium in blood serum by hydride generation inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry'. ROYAL SOC CHEMISTRY JOURNAL OF ANALYTICAL ATOMIC SPECTROMETRY, 11 (1), pp. 61-68.
RAYMAN MP, CHALLIS BC, COX PJ, JARMAN M.
(1975) 'OXIDATION OF N-NITROSOPIPERIDINE IN UDENFRIEND MODEL SYSTEM AND ITS METABOLISM BY RAT-LIVER MICROSOMES'. PERGAMON-ELSEVIER SCIENCE LTD BIOCHEMICAL PHARMACOLOGY, 24 (5), pp. 621-626.
RAYMAN MP, DIPPLE A.
(1973) 'STRUCTURE AND ACTIVITY IN CHEMICAL CARCINOGENESIS - COMPARISON OF REACTIONS OF 7-BROMOMETHYLBENZ[A]ANTHRACENE AND 7-BROMOMETHYL-12-METHYLBENZ[A]ANTHRACENE WITH MOUSE SKIN DEOXYRIBONUCLEIC ACID IN-VIVO'. AMER CHEMICAL SOC BIOCHEMISTRY, 12 (8), pp. 1538-1542.
RAYMAN MP, DIPPLE A.
(1973) 'STRUCTURE AND ACTIVITY IN CHEMICAL CARCINOGENESIS - COMPARISON OF REACTIONS OF 7-BROMOMETHYLBENZ[ALPHA]ANTHRACENE AND 7-BROMOMETHYL-12-METHYLBENZ[ALPHA]ANTHRACENE WITH DEOXYRIBONUCLEIC ACID IN-VITRO'. AMER CHEMICAL SOC BIOCHEMISTRY, 12 (6), pp. 1202-1207.
DIPPLE A, BROOKES P, RAYMAN MP, MACKINTO D.
(1971) 'CHEMISTRY AND BIOLOGICAL-ACTIVITIES OF SOME 7-BROMOMETHYLBENZ[A]ANTHRACENES'. AMER ASSOC CANCER RESEARCH PROCEEDINGS OF THE AMERICAN ASSOCIATION FOR CANCER RESEARCH, 12 (NMAR), pp. 95-&.
DIPPLE A, BROOKES P, MACKINTO D, RAYMAN MP.
(1971) 'REACTION OF 7-BROMOMETHYLBENZ[A]ANTHRACENE WITH NUCLEIC ACIDS, POLYNUCLEOTIDES, AND NUCLEOSIDES'. AMER CHEMICAL SOC BIOCHEMISTRY, 10 (23), pp. 4323-&.
Bath SC, Button S, Rayman MP.
'Iodised salt availability in the United Kingdom'. Reading: Nutrition Society Summer Meeting 70
Bath SC, Steer C, Golding J, Emmett PM, Rayman MP.
'Maternal iodine status during pregnancy and the impact on cognitive outcomes in the offspring'. London: Nutrition Society Winter Meeting (70)
Bath SC, Button S, Rayman MP.
'Does farm-management system affect milk-iodine concentration? Comparison study of organic and conventional milk'. Proceedings of the Nutrition Society, Reading: Nutrition Society Summer Meeting 70
Johnson CC, Fordyce FM, Rayman MP.
(2010) 'Factors controlling the distribution of selenium in the environment and their impact on health and nutrition'. CAMBRIDGE UNIV PRESS PROCEEDINGS OF THE NUTRITION SOCIETY, Univ Surrey, Guildford, ENGLAND: Conference on Over-and Undernutrition - Challenges and Approaches 69 (1), pp. 119-132.
Stranges S, Ji C, Cappuccio FP, Acien AN, Ordovas JM, Rayman M, Burke RF, Guallar E.
(2009) 'High-Normal Selenium Status Is Associated with Adverse Lipid Profile in British Adults'. LIPPINCOTT WILLIAMS & WILKINS CIRCULATION, Palm Harbor, FL: Joint Nutrition, Physical Activity and Metabolism Conference/49th Cardiovascular Disease Epidemiology and Prevention of the American-Heart-Association 119 (10), pp. E307-E307.
Rayman MP, Thompson AJ, Bekaert B, Catterick J, Galassini R, Hall E, Warren-Perry M, Beckett GJ.
(2008) 'Randomized controlled trial of the effect of selenium supplementation on thyroid function in the elderly in the United Kingdom'. AMER SOC CLINICAL NUTRITION AMERICAN JOURNAL OF CLINICAL NUTRITION, ROYAL COLL PHYSICIANS, LONDON, ENGLAND: Joint Winter Meeting of the Nutrition-Society / Association-for-the-Study-of-Obesity 87 (2), pp. 370-378.
Bekaert B, Cooper ML, Green F, Scott J, Rayman MP.
(2007) 'The PRECISE pilot trial: Investigating the relation among selenium, homocysteine, and folate in an elderly UK population'. AMER SOCIETY NUTRITIONAL SCIENCE JOURNAL OF NUTRITION, Washington, DC: International Research Conference on Food, Nutrition, and Cancer 137 (1), pp. 282S-283S.
Bekaert B, Cooper ML, Green F, McNulty H, Pentieva K, Scott J, Molloy A, Rayman MP.
(2007) 'Selenium status influences the effect of folate, vitamin B12 and pyridoxal 5 '-phosphate on homocysteine concentrations'. CAMBRIDGE UNIV PRESS PROCEEDINGS OF THE NUTRITION SOCIETY, 66, pp. 36A-36A.
Rayman MP, Cooper ML, Vishnubhatla I, Adami H-O, Groenberg H, Baelter K, Green FR.
(2006) 'Do functional selenoprotein SNPs predict the risk of prostate cancer?'. CAMBRIDGE UNIV PRESS PROCEEDINGS OF THE NUTRITION SOCIETY, 65, pp. 100A-100A.
Infante HG, O'Connor G, Rayman M, Wahlen R, Spallholz JE, Hearn R, Catterick T.
(2005) 'Identification of water-soluble gamma-glutamyl-Se-methylselenocysteine in yeast-based selenium supplements by reversed-phase HPLC with ICP-MS and electrospray tandem MS detection'. ROYAL SOC CHEMISTRY JOURNAL OF ANALYTICAL ATOMIC SPECTROMETRY, Budapest, HUNGARY: European Winter Conference on Plasma Spectrochemisty 20 (9), pp. 864-870.
(2002) 'The argument for increasing selenium intake'. C A B I PUBLISHING PROCEEDINGS OF THE NUTRITION SOCIETY, UNIV SHEFFIELD, SHEFFIELD, ENGLAND: Meeting of the Nutrition-Society 61 (2), pp. 203-215.
Rayman MP, Clark LC, Roussel AM, Anderson RA, Favrier AE.
(2000) 'Selenium in cancer prevention'. KLUWER ACADEMIC/PLENUM PUBL TRACE ELEMENTS IN MAN AND ANIMALS 10, EVIAN LES BAINS, FRANCE: 10th International Symposium on Trace Elements in Man and Animals (TEMA 10), pp. 575-580.
Rayman MP, Barlis J, Sokari S, Evans RW, Redman CWG, King LJ, Roussel AM, Anderson RA, Favrier AE.
(2000) 'Abnormalities of iron homeostasis in the pregnancy syndrome pre-eclampsia'. KLUWER ACADEMIC/PLENUM PUBL TRACE ELEMENTS IN MAN AND ANIMALS 10, EVIAN LES BAINS, FRANCE: 10th International Symposium on Trace Elements in Man and Animals (TEMA 10), pp. 611-615.
Rayman MP, Abou-Shakra FR, Redman CWG, Ward NI, Fischer PWF, Labbe MR, Cockell KA, Gibson RS.
(1997) 'Serum elemental concentrations in the pregnancy disease pre-eclampsia'. NATL RESEARCH COUNCIL CANADA TRACE ELEMENTS IN MAN AND ANIMALS - 9, BANFF, CANADA: 9th International Symposium on Trace Elements in Man and Animals (TEMA 9), pp. 71-73.
Rayman M, Gibbons K, Dilley K.
(2009) Healthy Eating: The Prostate Care Cookbook.
BOOK (AUTHORED & EDITED)
Rayman M, Callaghan A.
(2006) Nutrition and arthritis. Wiley-Blackwell
BOOK (AUTHORED & EDITED)
(2012) 'Selenium and adverse conditions of human pregnancy'. in Hatfield DL, Berry MJ, Gladyshev VN (eds.) Selenium: Its molecular biology and role in human health
3rd Edition. Springer Article number 42 , pp. 531-546.