Article Spotlight

Selected articles with our very brief descriptions, and links to their respective citations and full abstracts on


Epigenetics in clinical practice: Characterizing patient and provider experiences with MTHFR polymorphisms and methylfolate. J Nutrigenet Nutrigenomics. 2015;8(3):137-50. doi: 10.1159/000440700. Epub 2015 Oct 21. (PubMed ID: 26484755)
Awareness and use of genetic testing for diagnosis of MTHFR gene variants is becoming more common, and is favorably received by many patients.  However, the need for proper communication and follow-up with patients is described, and additional research is encouraged.

Nutritional modulation of gene expression: Might this be of benefit to individuals with Crohn's disease? Front Immunol. 2015 Sep 11;6:467. doi: 10.3389/fimmu.2015.00467. eCollection 2015. (PubMed ID: 26441972)
The author describes a "paradigm shift" with respect to diagnosis and nutritional therapy for Crohn's disease. Included is a discussion of the genetic basis of this disorder, and specific dietary components which can affect gene expression, plus discussion of relevant systems biology.

Diets high in carbohydrate may not be appropriate for G carriers with the metabolic syndrome. Asia Pac J Clin Nutr. 2015;24(3):546-54. doi: 10.6133/apjcn.2015.24.3.17. (PubMed ID: 26420199)
Among the Chinese subjects in this study who were carrying two copies of the C allele (the "common" allele) of the rs328 variant of the LPL gene, a higher-carbohydrate diet was associated with lower fasting glucose levels; however, this was not true for those subjects carrying one or two copies of the less-common G allele.

Interaction between FOXO1A-209 genotype and tea drinking is significantly associated with reduced mortality at advanced ages. Rejuvenation Res. 2015 Sep 28. [Epub ahead of print] (PubMed ID: 26414954)
For the Chinese subjects in this study, as association between the beneficial effects of drinking green tea on mortality were found to be considerably more pronounced among those who carry two copies of the A allele of the rs2755209 variant of the FOXO1A gene (also known as FOXO1). For those with Asian ancestry, the A allele is the less-common or "minor" allele, but is more common among those of European ancestry.

Molecular targeted intervention for pancreatic cancer. Cancers (Basel). 2015 Aug 10;7(3):1499-542. doi: 10.3390/cancers7030850. (PubMed ID: 26266422)
Table 1 within this extensive review lists 28 different substances and associated genes which are relevant to pancreatic cancer. Dietary strategies for the prevention or treatment of pancreatic cancer are discussed, with mention of various phytochemicals and pharmaceutical agents.

Cholesterol ester transfer protein polymorphism rs5882 is associated with triglyceride-lowering in response to plant sterol consumption. Appl Physiol Nutr Metab. 2015 Aug;40(8):846-9. doi: 10.1139/apnm-2015-0039. (PubMed ID: 26244602)
Significant reduction of serum triglycerides was associated with use of plant sterols among those who carry two copies of the minor G allele of the rs5882 variant (also known as the 1264A-G variant) of the CETP gene.  No significant reduction was found among those who carry one or two copies of the A allele.

Nutritional systems biology of type 2 diabetes. Genes Nutr. 2015 Sep;10(5):481. doi: 10.1007/s12263-015-0481-3. Epub 2015 Jul 24. (PubMed ID: 26202330)
Use of various "omics" technologies in a systems biology approach to type-2 diabetes is described, including discussion of nutrition-related epigenetics, proteomics, and metabolomics.

Nutrigenetics of cholesterol metabolism: observational and dietary intervention studies in the postgenomic era. Nutr Rev. 2015 Aug;73(8):523-43. doi: 10.1093/nutrit/nuv016. Epub 2015 Jun 27. (PubMed ID: 26117841)
Tables 1 and 2 provide a listing of reports and specific gene variants that were found to be relevant to cholesterol metabolism. Discussion of selected items is also provided, which supports the usefulness of nutrigenetics research.

Nutriepigenomics: the role of nutrition in epigenetic control of human diseases. Curr Opin Clin Nutr Metab Care. 2015 Jul;18(4):328-33. doi: 10.1097/MCO.0000000000000180. (PubMed ID: 26001651)
The growing role for nutrition-related epigenetics is described, including mention of its importance to cancer, metabolic syndrome, and neurodegeneration.

Development of personalized functional foods needs metabolic profiling. Curr Opin Clin Nutr Metab Care. 2014 Nov;17(6):567-73. doi: 10.1097/MCO.0000000000000107. (PubMed ID: 25137506)
The author describes how metabolomics, which involves gene-nutrient interactions, is becoming increasingly useful for the development of functional foods in the 21st century.

Impact of nutrition on non-coding RNA epigenetics in breast and gynecological cancer. Front Nutr. 2015 May 27;2:16. doi: 10.3389/fnut.2015.00016. eCollection 2015. PubMed ID: 26075205

Table 1 lists the various microRNAs which have been associated with breast cancer, ovary cancer, cervical cancer, and uterine cancer. Table 2 lists various phytochemicals which have been show to alter gene expression for those microRNAs, including curcumin, genistein, resveratrol, sulforaphane, pomegranate polyphenols, cruciferous vegetables, and garcinol, among others.

A combination of single-nucleotide polymorphisms is associated with interindividual variability in dietary β-carotene bioavailability in healthy men. J Nutr. 2015 Jun 10. pii: jn212837. [Epub ahead of print] PubMed ID: 26063065
25 gene variants in or near 12 genes listed in table 3 were found to be responsible for 69% of the substantial variability in absorption of beta-carotene observed between individuals among the French subjects who were tested.  The authors suggest that this interindividual difference in absorption may also extend to other carotenoids (e.g., alpha-carotene and beta-cryptoxanthin).

Genetic variation in CYP2R1 and GC genes associated with vitamin D deficiency status. J Pharm Pract. 2015 Jun 2. pii: 0897190015585876. [Epub ahead of print] PubMed ID: 26038244
Subjects carrying one or two copies of the rs10741657 variant of the CYP2R1 gene were found to have almost a 3.7-fold increased risk of being insufficient in vitamin D.  Subjects with one or two copies of the rs2282679 variant of the GC gene were less likely to be insufficient.

Selenium and chronic diseases: a nutritional genomics perspective. Nutrients. 2015 May 15;7(5):3621-51. PubMed ID: 25988760
Selenium-related genes (including selenoproteins) are listed in Table 1, along with a listing of functional gene variants (SNPs) in Table 2.  Selenium-related gene variants relevant to prostate cancer are listed in Table 3, and those relevant to colorectal cancer are listed in Table 4. Other health conditions listed in Table 5 include lung cancer, laryngeal cancer, bladder cancer, cardiovascular disease, Kashin-Beck disease, Crohn disease, and type-2 diabetes.

The genomics of micronutrient requirements. Genes Nutr. 2015 Jul;10(4):466. doi: 10.1007/s12263-015-0466-2. Epub 2015 May 19. PubMed ID: 25981693
Now that omics technologies are available, traditional approaches to assessing nutritional requirements should also include environmental, lifestyle and socioeconomic factors.

The next generation of dietitians: Implementing dietetics education and practice in integrative medicine. J Am Coll Nutr. 2015 May 11:1-6. [Epub ahead of print] PubMed ID: 25961884
The authors describe development of a curriculum in integrative medicine with core courses that cover inflammation, immune regulation, herbal supplements, and "Nutrigenomics and Nutrigenetics in Health and Disease."

Obesity: interactions of genome and nutrients intake. Prev Nutr Food Sci. 2015 Mar;20(1):1-7. doi: 10.3746/pnf.2015.20.1.1. Epub 2015 Mar 31. PubMed ID: 25866743
Discusses obesogenic environments, including nutrition and lifestyle, and their interaction with specific gene variants. The text also provides a discussion of the distinction between nutrigenomics and nutrigenetics.

Obesity and diabetes: from genetics to epigenetics. Mol Biol Rep. 2015 Apr;42(4):799-818. doi: 10.1007/s11033-014-3751-z. PubMed ID: 25253098
Table 1 lists examples of genes and microRNAs which can affect obesity and type-2 diabetes.

Interindividual variability of lutein bioavailability in healthy men: characterization, genetic variants involved, and relation with fasting plasma lutein concentration. Am J Clin Nutr. 2014 Jul;100(1):168-75. doi: 10.3945/ajcn.114.085720. Epub 2014 May 7. PubMed ID: 24808487
Table 3 is a listing of genes and gene variants which were found to be associated with variations in postprandial lutein levels in chylomicrons.

From inflammaging to healthy aging by dietary lifestyle choices: is epigenetics the key to personalized nutrition? Clin Epigenetics. 2015 Mar 25;7(1):33. doi: 10.1186/s13148-015-0068-2. eCollection 2015. PubMed ID: 25861393
Although genetic variation is acknowledged as important, this article describes the growing recognition of the importance of epigenetics, and its affect on inflammation and a variety of age-related disorders.

Dietary n-3 polyunsaturated fatty acid intakes modify the effect of genetic variation in fatty acid desaturase 1 on coronary artery disease. PLoS One. 2015 Apr 7;10(4):e0121255. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0121255. eCollection 2015. PubMed ID: 25849351
Among the Chinese subjects in this study, an increased risk of coronary artery disease was associated with the variant of the FADS1 gene.  However, higher risk was was not found among those who also consumed higher levels of EPA and/or DHA omega-3 fatty acids. The authors suggest that additional study is still required.

The APOB insertion/deletion polymorphism (rs17240441) influences postprandial lipaemia in healthy adults. Nutr Metab (Lond). 2015 Mar 8;12:7. doi: 10.1186/s12986-015-0002-9. eCollection 2015. PubMed ID: 25793007
The variant of the APOB gene was associated with greater variability in postprandial lipemia and insulin levels.  Although postprandial lipemia is a recognized risk factor for cardiovascular disease, further study and replication of this study's findings is still required.

Lycopene bioavailability is associated with a combination of genetic variants. Free Radic Biol Med. 2015 Mar 13. pii: S0891-5849(15)00110-0. doi: 10.1016/j.freeradbiomed.2015.02.033. [Epub ahead of print] PubMed ID: 25772008
Blood levels of lycopene from tomatoes varies considerably between individuals.  Table 3 shows a list 28 variants in or near 16 genes which explained 72% of the observed variability in postprandial lycopene levels in this study.

Habitual coffee intake, genetic polymorphisms, and type 2 diabetes. Eur J Endocrinol. 2015 May;172(5):595-601. doi: 10.1530/EJE-14-0805. Epub 2015 Mar 9. PubMed ID: 25755232
Coffee consumption was associated with lower risk of developing prediabetes or diabetes type 2 among those who carry certain alleles (i.e., one, two, or zero copies) of specific variants in the following genes: CDKAL1, KCNJ11, and IGF2BP2.

The anti-inflammatory effects of resveratrol on human peripheral blood mononuclear cells are influenced by a superoxide dismutase 2 gene polymorphism. Biogerontology. 2015 Mar 10. [Epub ahead of print] PubMed ID: 25753816
The effectiveness of resveratrol as an antioxidant was found to vary, depending in part on the variant of the SOD2 gene.

Genetic variations in magnesium-related ion channels may affect diabetes risk among African American and Hispanic American women. J Nutr. 2015 Mar;145(3):418-24. doi: 10.3945/jn.114.203489. Epub 2015 Jan 7. PubMed ID: 25733456
Among Hispanic American postmenopausal women with low magnesium intakes, variants in or near the following genes were associated with increased risk of type-2 diabetes: CLDN19, SLC41A1, and MMGT1. For women in that group with high magnesium intakes, a variant in the NIPA2 gene was associated with reduced risk; however, with high intakes, a variant in the KCNJ11 gene was associated with increased risk.  Among African American postmenopausal women, high magnesium intake was associated with reduced risk among those with a variant in the CNNM1 gene.  More research is clearly warranted.

A preliminary qualitative exploration of dietitians' engagement with genetics and nutritional genomics: perspectives from international leaders. J Allied Health. 2014 Winter;43(4):221-8. PubMed ID: 25433186
Dietitians acknowledge growing legitimacy and applications of nutritional genomics as additional research continues. The need for education at every level, as well as a healthcare system that helps develop and cultivate its practical uses, is also discussed.

Can genetic variability in α-tocopherol bioavailability explain the heterogeneous response to α-tocopherol supplements? Antioxid Redox Signal. 2015 Mar 10;22(8):669-78. doi: 10.1089/ars.2014.6144. Epub 2014 Nov 12. PubMed ID: 25289663
Tables 3-5 list multiple gene variants which were found to account for 82% of the variability between individuals with regard to vitamin E bioavailability, which the authors suggest can  help predict response to vitamin E supplementation.

Single-nucleotide polymorphisms in one-carbon metabolism genes, Mediterranean diet and breast cancer risk: a case-control study in the Greek-Cypriot female population. Genes Nutr. 2015 Mar;10(2):453. doi: 10.1007/s12263-015-0453-7. Epub 2015 Jan 21. PubMed ID: 25604861
Greater adherence to a Mediterranean-type diet was associated with reduced risk of breast cancer among women who carry variants of the following genes:  MTHFR, and MTR.

Genetic and environmental determinants of 25-hydroxyvitamin D levels in multiple sclerosis. Mult Scler. 2014 Dec 22. pii: 1352458514563590. [Epub ahead of print] PubMed ID: 25533295
Variants in the following genes were associated with differences in vitamin D levels in subjects with multiple sclerosis:  GC, and CYP2R1.

Nutrigenomics of essential oils and their potential domestic use for improving health. Nat Prod Commun. 2014 Nov;9(11):1641-8. PubMed ID: 25532301
The ability of essential oils from various spices to affect gene expression is reviewed.  Potentially protective properties against oxidation, inflammation, cancer and more is discussed.

The Pro12Ala polymorphism of the PPARγ2 gene interacts with a Mediterranean diet to prevent telomere shortening in the PREDIMED-NAVARRA Randomized Trial. Circ Cardiovasc Genet. 2014 Nov 18. pii: CIRCGENETICS.114.000635. [Epub ahead of print] PubMed ID: 25406242
Carriers of the Pro12Ala variant of the PPARG (also known as PPARγ2) gene were found to benefit more from a Mediterranean diet than non-carriers. This seems consistent with reports that carriers of this variant are more responsive to lifestyle changes for cardioprotection.

Meat-derived carcinogens, genetic susceptibility and colorectal adenoma risk. Genes Nutr. 2014 Nov;9(6):430. doi: 10.1007/s12263-014-0430-6. Epub 2014 Sep 18. PubMed ID: 25231222
Increased colorectal risk was associated with the and the variants of the CYP1B1 gene, and with the and the variants of the XPD gene, when combined with higher intakes of cooked/overcooked meat with higher levels of doneness.

The effects of soy supplementation on gene expression in breast cancer: a randomized placebo-controlled study. J Natl Cancer Inst. 2014 Sep 4;106(9). pii: dju189. doi: 10.1093/jnci/dju189. Print 2014 Sep. PubMed ID: 25190728
Higher intakes of isoflavones like genistein from soy can increase expression of genes like FGFR2, among others. This could result in increased cell proliferation, and is potentially problematic for gene expression related to breast cancer.

Maternal dietary intake of folate, vitamin B12 and MTHFR 677C>T genotype: their impact on newborn's anthropometric parameters. Genes Nutr. 2014 Sep;9(5):429. doi: 10.1007/s12263-014-0429-z. Epub 2014 Aug 31. PubMed ID: 25173112
Women who carry two copies of the 677C-T variant of the MTHFR gene may benefit from vitamin B-12 supplementation during pregnancy.  Among such women, a vitamin B-12 deficiency was associated with increased risk of giving birth to babies with significantly reduced length (including length for age).

Effect of zinc supplementation on insulin secretion: interaction between zinc and SLC30A8 genotype in Old Order Amish. Diabetologia. 2014 Oct 28. [Epub ahead of print] PubMed ID: 25348609
Subjects in this study with one or two copies of the variant of the SLC30A8 gene had an increased insulin response to glucose after zinc supplementation.

SREBF1 gene variations modulate insulin sensitivity in response to a fish oil supplementation. Lipids Health Dis. 2014 Oct 1;13:152. doi: 10.1186/1476-511X-13-152. PubMed ID: 25270430
Three different gene variants (rs12953299, and ) were associated with differences in insulin and/or insulin sensitivity response to fish oil supplementation.

Genomics and natural products: role of bioinformatics and recent patents. Recent Pat Biotechnol. 2014;8(2):144-51. PubMed ID: 25185982
Description of some recent developments in nutritional genomics with exciting potential. Table 3 lists twelve relevant patents, several of which are briefly discussed.

Influence of +1245 A/G MT1A polymorphism on advanced glycation end-products (AGEs) in elderly: effect of zinc supplementation. Genes Nutr. 2014 Sep;9(5):426. doi: 10.1007/s12263-014-0426-2. Epub 2014 Aug 23. PubMed ID: 25149676
Subjects who carried a variant of the MT1A gene were found to have higher baseline levels of advanced glycation end-products (AGEs). Zinc supplementation was found to improve intracellular zinc ion availability more among subjects who carried the gene variant.

Short-term magnesium deficiency downregulates telomerase, upregulates neutral sphingomyelinase and induces oxidative DNA damage in cardiovascular tissues: relevance to atherogenesis, cardiovascular diseases and aging. Int J Clin Exp Med. 2014 Mar 15;7(3):497-514. eCollection 2014. PubMed ID: 24753742
In an animal model, magnesium deficiency was shown to down-regulate telomerase in cardiac and aortic smooth muscle cells, and was associated with increased oxidative DNA damage. Its relevance to atherosclerosis, cardiovascular disease and aging and related health conditions is discussed.

Gene-diet interaction and weight loss. Curr Opin Lipidol. 2014 Feb;25(1):27-34. doi: 10.1097/MOL.0000000000000037. PubMed ID: 24345984
The continued emergence of information on gene-diet interactions is showing "great promise" for personalized interventions with regard to obesity and associated health problems.

Adult genetic risk screening. Annu Rev Med. 2014;65:1-17. doi: 10.1146/annurev-med-111212-144716. Epub 2013 Nov 4. PubMed ID: 24188662
Challenges and benefits of genetic testing is discussed with regard to its potential to reduce onset of adult diseases, including cardiovascular disease, stroke, various cancers, obesity, diabetes type 2, and neurodegeneration.

The need to build trust: a perspective on disparities in genetic testing. Genet Test Mol Biomarkers. 2013 Sep;17(9):647-8. doi: 10.1089/gtmb.2013.1548. PubMed ID: 24000888
The need for increasing awareness of the value of genetic testing and genetic counseling is described, as well as the importance of building trust among all socioeconomic groups.

Wellness and health omics linked to the environment: the WHOLE approach to personalized medicine. Adv Exp Med Biol. 2014;799:1-14. doi: 10.1007/978-1-4614-8778-4_1. (PubMed ID: 24292959)
Envisions growing use of genetic testing in conjunction with other considerations such as gene expression, epigenetics, metabolomics, lifestyle and behavior. Emphasis should be more on identifying areas needing active attention than on simply predicting risks. Areas of opportunity include immunological, cardiovascular, metabolic, neoplasms, cognition, mental health, and more. Identifies the need for professionals who are able to help interpret genomic data, and who work in conjunction with other specialists to help formulate "personal health action plans" for longer-term health and well-being.

Genetic variants in CYP2R1, CYP24A1 and VDR modify the efficacy of vitamin D3 supplementation for increasing serum 25-hydroxyvitamin D levels in a randomized controlled trial.  J Clin Endocrinol Metab. 2014 Jul 29:jc20141389. [Epub ahead of print] (PubMed ID: 25070320)
Gene variants are described which can affect the response to dietary supplementation with vitamin D.

Genetic information, non-discrimination, and privacy protections in genetic counseling practice.  J Genet Couns. 2014 Dec;23(6):891-902. (PubMed ID: 25063358)
Legal protections provided by the Genetic Information Non Discrimination Act (GINA) are described.  Clinicians are encouraged to pass this information along to their patients.

Perspectives on personalized nutrition for obesity.  J Nutrigenet Nutrigenomics. 2014 Jul 24;7(1). [Epub ahead of print] (PubMed ID: 25060599)
Nutrigenetics is leading to a better understanding of gene-environment interactions affecting weight gain and obesity. (From within PubMed, click on the Karger icon near the upper-right corner to view the free PDF; accessed 11 Aug, 2014).

Exploring future opportunities and barriers for business model concepts in personalized nutrition.  Arch Public Health. 2014 Jun 6;72 (Suppl 1 Proceedings of the 4th Belgian Nutrition Society):K5. doi: 10.1186/2049-3258-72-S1-K5. eCollection 2014. (PubMed ID: 25057358)
Although individualized nutrition holds great promise, the key for wider success will require coaching of patients that will result in lasting behavioral/lifestyle changes.

Genetic variants in the FADS gene: implications for dietary recommendations for fatty acid intake.  Curr Nutr Rep. 2014 Jun;3(2):139-148. (PubMed ID: 24977108)
There is strong evidence to suggest that dietary recommendations should include consideration of genetic variations, at least at the population level. The FADS family of genes (FADS1, FADS2, etc.) is used as an example, where gene variation frequencies differ considerably between Americans with African or European ancestry.

Low-copper diet as a preventive strategy for Alzheimer's disease.  Neurobiol Aging. 2014 Sep;35S2:S40-S50. doi: 10.1016/j.neurobiolaging.2014.02.031. Epub 2014 May 15. (PubMed ID: 24913894)
Both copper deficiency and excess copper can be harmful, especially for those with genetics-related Menkes disease or Wilson disease.  Excess copper can also play a role in the development of Alzheimer disease when variants are present in copper-related genes (e.g., ATP7B, ATOX1, and COMMD1).

Understanding consumer evaluations of personalised nutrition services in terms of the privacy calculus: A qualitative study.  Public Health Genomics. 2014;17(3):127-40. doi: 10.1159/000358851. Epub 2014 Apr 11. (PubMed ID: 24732571)
Successful implementation of personalized nutrition can benefit from face-to-face interaction with healthcare practitioners who can provide support, with an emphasis on lifestyle changes.

Environmental, personal, and genetic determinants of response to vitamin D supplementation in older adults.  J Clin Endocrinol Metab. 2014 Jul;99(7):E1332-40. doi: 10.1210/jc.2013-4101. Epub 2014 Apr 2. (PubMed ID: 24694335)
The affect of genetic variants were evaluated in conjunction with supplemental vitamin D, with the CYP2R1 gene having a significant association with responsiveness.  The authors conclude that response to dietary supplements can be affected by both the environment and genetics.

Timing of food intake and obesity: A novel association.  Physiol Behav. 2014 Jan 24. pii: S0031-9384(14)00003-1. doi: 10.1016/j.physbeh.2014.01.001. [Epub ahead of print] (PubMed ID: 24467926)
Food intake can affect our circadian rhythms, and interacts with our genes to influence either fat storage or fat mobilization. Timing of meals (particularly high-calorie meals) can affect both obesity and weight loss.

Nature and nurture- genes and environment- predict onset and progression of macular degeneration.  Prog Retin Eye Res. 2014 May;40:1-15. doi: 10.1016/j.preteyeres.2013.12.004. Epub 2013 Dec 27. (PubMed ID: 24374240)
Information is emerging about gene-environment interactions which should improve individualized prevention and treatment of AMD in the near future.

Polyphenols and the modulation of gene expression pathways: can we eat our way out of the danger of chronic disease?  Crit Rev Food Sci Nutr. 2014;54(8):985-1001. doi: 10.1080/10408398.2011.621772. (PubMed ID: 24499117)
Although there is still much to learn about the role of polyphenols in gene-diet interactions, discussion is provided of the influence of polyphenols on epigenetic mechanisms, including microRNAs and histone acetylation.

Polymorphism at the TNF-alpha gene interacts with Mediterranean diet to influence triglyceride metabolism and inflammation status in metabolic syndrome patients: From the CORDIOPREV clinical trial.  Mol Nutr Food Res. 2014 Apr 22. doi: 10.1002/mnfr.201300723. [Epub ahead of print] (PubMed ID: 24753491)
Common variants in the genes ABCB1, ABCC1, and ABCC2 are associated with higher levels of methylmercury transmission to the fetus among pregnant women, which can be relevant for individuals or populations with greater consumption of fish products.

Personalized nutrition and cardiovascular disease prevention: From Framingham to PREDIMED.  Adv Nutr. 2014 May 14;5(3):368S-71S. doi: 10.3945/an.113.005686. Print 2014 May. (PubMed: 24829490)
Progress is being made toward the practical application of nutrigenetics research. Using improved research methods, more recently-recognized gene-diet interactions are described which can affect cardiovascular risks (e.g., cholesterol, triglycerides, body mass index, blood glucose, and insulin resistance). Risk-reduction benefits of a Mediterranean diet are also briefly described. Continued development of genetics-related testing and research, combined with better education of both professionals and the general public is urged, along with greater academic-industry partnerships.

Nutritional phenotype databases and integrated nutrition: from molecules to populations.  Adv Nutr. 2014 May 14;5(3):352S-7S. doi: 10.3945/an.113.005496. Print 2014 May. (PubMed ID: 24829488)
Greater integration of molecular nutrition with public health is urged, with implications for both nutrition education and funding agencies.

Nutrigenomics: Definitions and advances of this new science.  J Nutr Metab. 2014;2014:202759. Epub 2014 Mar 25. (PubMed ID: 24795820)
Nutrition-related epigenetics, transcriptomics, proteomics and metabolomics, are briefly described. Relevance to obesity, cancer and type-2 diabetes is also discussed. Although additional research is still needed, recent advances are beginning to enable personalized counseling.

Kallikrein 3 and vitamin D receptor polymorphisms: potentials environmental risk factors for prostate cancer.  Diagn Pathol. 2014 Apr 22;9(1):84. [Epub ahead of print] (PubMed ID: 24755043)
Chinese men carrying one or two copies of the variant of the KLK3 gene were found to have more than a 3-fold increased risk of developing prostate cancer. However, among those men carrying the higher-risk alleles, regular consumption of tea was associated with about a 55% reduction of risk. The authors mention one of the constituents of green tea (protocatechuic acid) as being potentially helpful.

Polymorphism at the TNF-alpha gene interacts with Mediterranean diet to influence triglyceride metabolism and inflammation status in metabolic syndrome patients: From the CORDIOPREV clinical trial.  Mol Nutr Food Res. 2014 Apr 22. doi:10.1002/mnfr.201300723. [Epub ahead of print] (PubMed ID: 24753491)
Carriers of two copies of the common GG allele of the TNF variant showed higher postprandial triglycerides and CRP levels; however, this was no longer found after adherence to a Mediterranean diet for 12 months. (The common name for is TNF -308G-A.)

Frontiers of nutritional intervention.  J Nutrigenet Nutrigenomics. 2013;6(6):I-II. doi: 10.1159/000362481. Epub 2014 Apr 4. (PubMed ID: 24713680)
Three areas are briefly described as nutritional intervention frontiers, and targets: chronic inflammation, intestinal microbiota, and epigenetics.  Examples are given within each category.

New criteria for supplementation of selected micronutrients in the era of nutrigenetics and nutrigenomics.  Int J Food Sci Nutr. 2014 Aug;65(5):529-38. doi: 10.3109/09637486.2014.898258. Epub 2014 Mar 13. (PubMed ID: 24625102)
Nutrigenomics includes the affect of diet on gene expression generally, while nutrigenetics pertains to more individualized responses and associated gene variants (polymorphisms). For illustrative purposes, discussion is provided for three specific examples: ascorbic acid, omega-3 fatty acids, and folic acid.

Polyphenols and the modulation of gene expression pathways: can we eat our way out of the danger of chronic disease?  Crit Rev Food Sci Nutr. 2014;54(8):985-1001. doi: 10.1080/10408398.2011.621772. (PubMed ID: 24499117)
Although there is still much to learn about the role of polyphenols in gene-diet interactions, discussion is provided of the influence of polyphenols on epigenetic mechanisms, including microRNAs and histone acetylation.

Nutrigenomics - perspectives from registered dietitians: a report from the Quebec-wide e-consultation on nutrigenomics among registered dietitians. J Hum Nutr Diet. 2014 Jan 6. doi: 10.1111/jhn.12194. [Epub ahead of print] (PubMed ID: 24387074)
A survey among Quebec-area dietitians found that although interested in nutritional genomics, most do not yet feel sufficiently prepared to use it in their practices.

Dietary magnesium and genetic interactions in diabetes and related risk factors: a brief overview of current knowledge. Nutrients. 2013 Dec 6;5(12):4990-5011. doi: 10.3390/nu5124990. (PubMed ID: 24322525)
Both genetics and environmental/lifestyle factors influence risk of developing type-2 diabetes. Magnesium research results are listed in several tables, and discussion is provided regarding gene variants which can affect magnesium homeostasis and risk of diabetes.

Nutrigenomics: the role of nutrients in gene expression. Periodontol 2000. 2014 Feb;64(1):154-60. doi: 10.1111/prd.12001. (PubMed ID: 24320962)
Specific nutrients can affect gene expression in periodontal diseases (gingivitis and periodontitis) involving both the immune system and inflammatory responses. Periodontal disease among type-2 diabetics is discussed with regard to the variant of SLC30A8, a zinc-transporter gene, and the potential usefulness of zinc supplementation.

Interactions between zinc transporter-8 gene (SLC30A8) and plasma zinc concentrations for impaired glucose regulation and type 2 diabetes. Diabetes. 2013 Dec 4. [Epub ahead of print] (PubMed ID: 24306209)
The variant of SLC30A8, a zinc-transporter gene, can increase the risk of developing type-2 diabetes; however, among carriers of this variant, higher plasma zinc levels were found to be associated with reduction of this risk.

Vitamin E and diabetic nephropathy in mice model and humans. World J Nephrol. 2013 Nov 6;2(4):111-24. doi: 10.5527/wjn.v2.i4.111. (PubMed ID: 24255894)
Supplementation with higher levels of vitamin E have been associated with increases in risk of mortality among general populations. However, diabetics who carry the 2-2 allele/phenotype of haptoglobin (that is, HP 2-2) suffer greater oxidative stress. This allows them to benefit from greater vitamin E supplementation, whereas those carrying the 1-1 or 2-1 alleles do not benefit. Both diabetic nephropathy and diabetic retinopathy are discussed.

Public opinion on policy issues in genetics and genomics. Genet Med. 2013 Nov 7. doi: 10.1038/gim.2013.175. [Epub ahead of print] (PubMed ID: 24202084)
Americans were found to be supportive of more research on genetics, government protections from genetic discrimination, and involvement of healthcare professionals for explaining direct-to-consumer genetic test results.

Nutrigenetics, metabolic syndrome risk and personalized nutrition. Curr Vasc Pharmacol. 2014 Jan 31;11(6):946-53. (PubMed ID: 24168447)
Table 1 provides a listing of 10 gene variants from 9 genes associated with risk of developing metabolic syndrome, and identifies potential risk modifiers. Risk estimates are also indicated, ranging from 1.57 to 4.4-fold increased risk except for one variant which is protective (odds ratio of 0.32). Although the authors believe that nutrigenetics has great potential for both prevention and treatment, they also suggest a holistic approach to overall dietary and lifestyle recommendations.

Haptoglobin 2 allele associates with unstable carotid plaque and major cardiovascular events. Atherosclerosis. 2013 Oct;230(2):228-34. doi: 10.1016/j.atherosclerosis.2013.07.008. Epub 2013 Jul 25. (PubMed ID: 24075749)
The 2-2 allele/phenotype of haptoglobin (that is, HP 2-2) is less effective at protecting from oxidative stress, which can be induced by the pro-oxidant effects of heme-iron. HP 2-2 is carried by about 37% of the Finnish population tested for this report, and is associated with increased risk of unstable atherosclerotic plaque and major cardiovascular events, including ischemic stroke and myocardial infarction.

Challenges in obesity research. Nutr Hosp. 2013 Sep;28 Suppl 5:144-53. doi: 10.3305/nh.2013.28.sup5.6930. (PubMed ID: 24010755)
Variables affecting obesity are described, including genetics, epigenetics, nutrigenetics and nutrigenomics.

Mediterranean diet reduces the adverse effect of the TCF7L2- polymorphism on cardiovascular risk factors and stroke incidence: A randomized controlled trial in a high-cardiovascular-risk population. Diabetes Care. 2013 Nov;36(11):3803-11. doi: 10.2337/dc13-0955. Epub 2013 Aug 13. (PubMed ID: 23942586)
Carrying two copies of the T allele for the variant of the TCF7L2 gene has been associated with a higher risk of type-2 diabetes. When adherence to a Mediterranean diet was low, fasting glucose was higher among TT carriers than among controls; however, no significant difference was found when adherence to the Mediterranean diet was high. Blood lipid levels were also improved, which suggests that adherence to the Mediterranean diet may likewise help reduce the higher risk of stroke that has also been associated with TT carriers.

Future challenges and present ethical considerations in the use of personalized nutrition based on genetic advice. J Acad Nutr Diet. 2013 Nov;113(11):1447-54. doi: 10.1016/j.jand.2013.05.028. Epub 2013 Aug 2. (PubMed ID: 23916970)
A two-page listing of genes and gene variants which are tested by various direct-to-consumer testing companies is provided. This balanced review describes the issues and concerns surrounding personalized nutrition, including ethical considerations, and urges the involvement and education of health professionals to help guide the proper translation and appropriate utilization of such testing.

Situating nutri-ethics at the junction of nutrigenomics and nutriproteomics in postgenomics medicine. Curr Pharmacogenomics Person Med. 2013 Jun;11(2):162-166. (PubMed ID: 23885285)
The use of nutrigenetics, nutrigenomics, and nutri-proteomics to optimize nutrition is discussed, including ethical considerations regarding its potential for enhancing sports performance.

The application of genetics and nutritional genomics in practice: an international survey of knowledge, involvement and confidence among dietitians in the US, Australia and the UK. Genes Nutr. 2013 Nov;8(6):523-33. doi: 10.1007/s12263-013-0351-9. Epub 2013 Jul 17. (PubMed ID: 23861045)
A survey of dietitians found that knowledge and confidence is still low with regard to the use of nutritional genomics, leading the authors to suggest that improvement should be pursued.

Gene polymorphisms of ADIPOQ +45T>G, UCP2 -866G>A, and FABP2 Ala54Thr on the risk of colorectal cancer: A matched case-control study. PLoS One. 2013 Jun 27;8(6):e67275. Print 2013. (PubMed ID: 23826253)
Carrying higher-risk gene variants while consuming higher levels of red meat was associated with a 3.4-fold increased risk of developing colorectal cancer in this study.

Third Jesús Culebras Lecture - Molecular biology and clinical nutrition; where do we stand and where do we go? Nutr Hosp. 2013 Marzo-Abril;28(2):241-9. (PubMed ID: 23822674)
Discusses opportunities and challenges for nutrigenetics, nutrigenomics, epigenetics and metabolomics in the 21st Century.

Systematic review of knowledge, confidence and education in nutritional genomics for students and professionals in nutrition and dietetics. J Hum Nutr Diet. 2013 Jun 20. doi: 10.1111/jhn.12132. [Epub ahead of print] (PubMed ID: 23781868)
A review of published studies on nutritional genomics knowledge and confidence among nutrition and dietetic professionals indicates that related education and strategies for improving education are still weak. An approach for improving genetics-related education is suggested.

Adiponectin gene variant interacts with fish oil supplementation to influence serum adiponectin in older individuals. J Nutr. 2013 Jul;143(7):1021-7. doi: 10.3945/jn.112.172585. Epub 2013 May 8. (PubMed ID: 23658423)
Older individuals with lower adiponectin levels may benefit from supplementation with fish oils, such as among those in this study who carried two copies of the TT allele of the 45T-G variant (also known as ) of the adiponectin gene.

An insight into the public acceptance of nutrigenomic-based personalised nutrition. Nutr Res Rev. 2013 Jun;26(1):39-48. doi: 10.1017/S0954422413000024. Epub 2013 Apr 8. (PubMed ID: 23561449)
Discusses the importance of public acceptance and engagement. Because many members of the public would like to involve their primary health professionals, better education and familiarization among professionals will be important. Behavioral changes among the public are crucial to its successful implementation, with those who are already suffering symptoms being among the most motivated. Further research on implementation is warranted since personalized nutrition has considerable potential for reducing non-communicable diseases.

Consumers' intention to use health recommendation systems to receive personalized nutrition advice. BMC Health Serv Res. 2013 Apr 4;13:126. doi: 10.1186/1472-6963-13-126. (PubMed ID: 23557363)
Use of health recommendation systems by members of the public are influenced by many factors, including enjoyment. However, when health professionals are also involved, greater emphasis is placed on usefulness. Partnering between the public and professionals may be important for the successful embracement of personalized nutrition.

Genomic and epigenomic insights into nutrition and brain disorders. Nutrients. 2013 Mar 15;5(3):887-914. (PubMed ID: 23503168)
Review of nutritional and environmental factors which influence many brain-related disorders resulting from gene variants and epigenetic mechanisms. Examples include cognitive impairment, depression, eating disorders, schizophrenia, Alzheimer's, and brain tumors.

Contribution of vitamin D insufficiency to the pathogenesis of multiple sclerosis. Ther Adv Neurol Disord. 2013 Mar;6(2):81-116. (PubMed ID: 23483715)
Review of vitamin D in multiple sclerosis. While awaiting more definitive evidence for the role of vitamin D in MS pathogenesis, patients may benefit from supplemental vitamin D in moderation. The authors suggest that an average daily intake of 1500-3000 IU may be sufficient for most patients.

Diet, microbes, and host genetics: the perfect storm in inflammatory bowel diseases. J Gastroenterol. 2013 Mar;48(3):315-21. doi: 10.1007/s00535-013-0777-2. Epub 2013 Mar 12. (PubMed ID: 23475322)
Inflammatory bowel diseases such as Crohn disease and ulcerative colitis result from a combination of genetic and environmental factors. Although diet is one of those factors, there is growing evidence that intestinal microbiota also play an important role.

Do we know enough? A scientific and ethical analysis of the basis for genetic-based personalized nutrition. Genes Nutr. 2013 Jul;8(4):373-81. doi: 10.1007/s12263-013-0338-6. Epub 2013 Mar 8. (PubMed ID: 23471854)
Although some maintain that the science is still too immature, others contend that enough information already exists to warrant individualized nutrition advice that may diverge from general dietary recommendations. Ethical considerations are discussed, including the advantages of a cautious approach, while also avoiding paternalism.

Curcumin modulates DNA methylation in colorectal cancer cells. PLoS One. 2013;8(2):e57709. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0057709. Epub 2013 Feb 27. (PubMed ID: 23460897)
New evidence is described which suggests that one means by which curcumin (such as from turmeric) may help prevent colorectal cancer is by its favorable effect on epigenetic mechanisms involving DNA methylation.

The ethical introduction of genome-based information and technologies into public health. Public Health Genomics. 2013;16(3):100-9. doi: 10.1159/000346474. Epub 2013 Feb 16. (PubMed ID: 23428828)
Advances in genetic technologies, including cost reductions, have increased the usefulness of genetic testing for broader aspects of public health and healthcare. Background principles for the ethical introduction of genetics-based technologies into public health are described.

Anti-inflammatory properties of orange juice: possible favorable molecular and metabolic effects. Plant Foods Hum Nutr. 2013 Mar;68(1):1-10. doi: 10.1007/s11130-013-0343-3. (PubMed ID: 23417730)
Orange juice was found to reduce inflammation-related gene expression, and discussion is offered regarding the anti-inflammatory properties of flavonoids like hesperidin and naringenin.

Ozone exposure, vitamin C intake, and genetic susceptibility of asthmatic children in Mexico City: a cohort study. Respir Res. 2013 Feb 4;14:14. (PubMed ID: 23379631)
Variants of three genes involved with antioxidant defenses (GSTM1, GSTP1, and NQO1) were assessed among asthmatic children who were also exposed to ozone from air pollution.  Higher dietary intakes of vitamin C seemed especially helpful for those with a higher genetic risk score (i.e., a larger number of "at risk" gene variants).

The future direction of personalised nutrition: my diet, my phenotype, my genes. Proc Nutr Soc. 2013 May;72(2):219-25. doi: 10.1017/S0029665112003436. Epub 2013 Jan 30. (PubMed ID: 23360849)
Various approaches to personalized nutrition are described, including phenotype, metabotype (based on metabolites), and genotype. Embracement of personalized nutrition will depend on consumer demand, which may occur first for things like weight management, or in connection with the use of dietary supplements. A European initiative, Food4Me, will be issuing reports on efficacy, ethics, and consumer attitudes.

Population-specific influence of SLC2A9 genotype on the acute hyperuricaemic response to a fructose load. Ann Rheum Dis. 2013 Nov 1;72(11):1868-73. doi: 10.1136/annrheumdis-2012-202732. Epub 2013 Jan 24. (PubMed ID: 23349133)
The variant of the SLC2A9 gene has been associated with an increased risk for hyperuricemia. Among Caucasians who carry this variant, fructose-containing beverages were found to increase serum urate, which may therefore increase the risk of developing gout, at least among that group.

Essential fatty acids deficiency promotes lipogenic gene expression and hepatic steatosis through the liver X receptor. J Hepatol. 2013 May;58(5):984-92. (PubMed ID: 23333450)
The liver X receptor genes (especially LXR-alpha, also known as NR1H3) are involved with the development of fatty liver in response to inadequate intakes of polyunsaturated fatty acids. Although promising for future prevention or treatment of non-alcoholic fatty liver disease, it also underscores the importance of proper fatty acid nutrition for maintaining liver health.

Olive oil polyphenols enhance the expression of cholesterol efflux related genes in vivo in humans. A randomized controlled trial. J Nutr Biochem. 2013 Jan 17. pii: S0955-2863(12)00285-9. doi: 10.1016/j.jnutbio.2012.10.008. (PubMed ID: 23333095)
Beneficial gene expression was increased for a number of genes involving cholesterol metabolism after consuming higher intakes of polyphenols from olive oil. These changes included a reduction in the oxidation of LDL, and an increase in antioxidant capacity (oxygen radical absorbance capacity, or ORAC). The authors suggest that enrichment of the diet with olive-oil polyphenols may prove helpful in reducing cardiovascular risk.

Nutrigenetics and metabolic disease: current status and implications for personalised nutrition. Nutrients. 2013 Jan 10;5(1):32-57. (PubMed ID: 23306188)
Review of the importance of nutrition as the primary environmental variable affecting gene expression related to obesity and type-2 diabetes, as well as metabolic syndrome (table 1). Progress is encouraging and provides "proof of concept," but further research on consumer attitudes will be important, along with a holistic approach incorporating additional environmental variables such as physical activity, etc. Validation and translation of new findings will be key.

Potential moderators of physical activity on brain health. J Aging Res. 2012;2012:948981. doi: 10.1155/2012/948981. Epub 2012 Dec 9. (PubMed ID: 23304508)
The affect of physical activity on gene expression can help slow cognitive decline that comes with aging, which can be affected by variants in genes such as APOE, BDNF, and COMT.  Omega-3 fatty acid such as DHA used in combination with physical activity is also discussed.

Personalised nutrition: ready for practice? Proc Nutr Soc. 2013 Feb;72(1):48-52. doi: 10.1017/S0029665112002844. Epub 2012 Nov 12. (PubMed ID: 23199675)
Challenges and considerations surrounding the implementation of personalized nutrition are discussed. Success will require availability and affordability of information, guidance, and support from healthcare practitioners. As helpful new information continues to emerge, individuals will have increased responsibility for making appropriate lifestyle and nutrition choices from among existing nutritional products. We must also learn how to better educate individuals to make good choices and longer-term behavioral changes.

Overweight modulates APOE and APOA5 alleles on the risk of severe hyper­triglyceridemia. Clin Chim Acta. 2013 Feb 1;416:31-5. doi: 10.1016/j.cca.2012.10.054. Epub 2012 Nov 23.  (PubMed ID: 23178747)
Being overweight in combination with carrying the 4E variant of the APOE gene was associated with more than a 13-fold increased risk of severe hypertriglyceridemia.  Similarly, being overweight in combination with carrying the variant of the APOA5 gene was associated with more than a 15-fold increased risk compared to those with neither of these risk factors.  Potentially synergistic gene-environment interactions, such as with elevated body mass index, should also be monitored in clinical practice.

Vitamin D receptor Fok-I polymorphism modulates diabetic host response to vitamin D intake: Need for a nutrigenetic approach. Diabetes Care. 2013 Mar;36(3):550-6. doi: 10.2337/dc12-0919. Epub 2012 Nov 16. (PubMed ID: 23160722)
Diabetic subjects carrying two copies of the f allele (ff) of the VDR FokI variant were more apt to remain deficient in vitamin D status after consuming 500 IU of vitamin D daily for 12 weeks. The authors suggest that a nutrigenetic approach can be helpful for identify diabetics who are "low responders" to vitamin D, which can be associated with inflammation.

Obesity: genome and environment interactions. Arh Hig Rada Toksikol. 2012 Sep 25;63(3):395-405. (PubMed ID: 23152389)
Gene-environment interactions potentially affecting obesity are described. Examples include genes like LEP, LEPR and others, along with various lifestyle and environmental factors, with nutrigenomics also mentioned.

Associations of the FTO and the MC4R polymorphisms with type 2 diabetes are modulated by diet, being higher when adherence to the Mediterranean diet pattern is low. Cardiovasc Diabetol. 2012 Nov 6;11:137. doi: 10.1186/1475-2840-11-137. (PubMed ID: 23130628)
Case-control study of 7000+ subjects showed that lower adherence to a Mediterranean diet was associated with about a 1.2-fold higher risk of type-2 diabetes among carriers of specific gene variants in or near the FTO and MC4R genes (rs9939609 and , respectively). However, with greater adherence to a Mediterranean diet, this increased risk disappeared.  Although folic acid may be involved in these differences, additional study is still required.

Nutrigenomics and nutrigenetics. Iran J Public Health. 2010;39(4):1-14. Epub 2010 Dec 31. (PubMed ID: 23113033)
Introductory overview of nutrigenetics and nutrigenomics, with examples of specific gene variants.  Nutritional epigenetics is also described, along with disease prevention, DNA damage, and telomeres.

Plant oils and cardiometabolic risk factors: The role of genetics. Curr Nutr Rep. 2012 Sep;1(3):161-168. Epub 2012 Jun 14. (PubMed ID: 23001455)
Table 1 lists gene variants and corresponding health effects of various plant oils such as olive oil, with other oils also mentioned. Affects on body weight, insulin resistance, gene expression, and anti-inflammatory properties are also discussed.

Sugar-sweetened beverages and genetic risk of obesity. N Engl J Med. 2012 Oct 11;367(15):1387-96. doi: 10.1056/NEJMoa1203039. Epub 2012 Sep 21. (PubMed ID: 22998338)
Among those with genetic risk for obesity, greater consumption of sugar-sweetened beverages was associated with an even higher risk of obesity.

Coverage of genomic medicine: information gap between lay public and scientists. Risk Manag Healthc Policy. 2012;5:83-90. Epub 2012 Aug 2. (PubMed ID: 22956889)
With the growing usefulness of genetic information, the importance of informing the public will continue to increase. Information about genetics in the mass media is not keeping pace with the scientific literature. Scientists are encouraged to consider ways to improve dissemination of such information.

Haptoglobin genotype and cardiovascular outcomes in diabetes mellitus - natural history of the disease and the effect of vitamin E treatment. Meta-analysis of the medical literature. Eur J Intern Med. 2012 Oct;23(7):628-32. Epub 2012 May 14. (PubMed ID: 22939808)
Diabetics who carry the haptoglobin genotype HP 2-2 have an increased risk of cardiovascular disease.  This meta-analysis reports that those with the HP 2-2 variant who also supplemented with vitamin E had a significantly reduced risk (34% reduction, with an odds ratio of 0.66 with 95% confidence interval of 0.48-0.9).  Those with other haptoglobin variants (HP 1-1 and HP 2-1) did not show a benefit from vitamin E supplements.  Genetic testing of diabetic patients for their haptoglobin genotype may be warranted.

Foodomics: a new comprehensive approach to food and nutrition. Genes Nutr. 2013 Jan;8(1):1-4. doi: 10.1007/s12263-012-0310-x. Epub 2012 Aug 30. (PubMed ID: 22933238)
Foodomics is described as combining genomics, transcriptomics (gene expression), proteomics (proteins) and metabolomics (metabolites) with food science and food technology for optimizing health and well-being.

Folate intake, alcohol consumption, and the methylenetetrahydrofolate reductase (MTHFR) C677T gene polymorphism: influence on prostate cancer risk and interactions. Front Oncol. 2012;2:100. doi: 10.3389/fonc.2012.00100. Epub 2012 Aug 14. (PubMed ID: 22912935)
Higher alcohol intakes were associated with an increased risk of prostate cancer among men with lower intakes of folic acid, especially among men carrying two copies of the common allele of the MTHFR 677C-T gene variant (that is, the CC allele).

Increasing public awareness of direct-to-consumer genetic tests: health care access, internet use, and population density correlates. J Cancer Epidemiol. 2012;2012:309109. Epub 2012 Jul 30. (PubMed ID: 22899921)
While controversies and uncertainties remain, awareness of direct-to-consumer (DTC) genetic testing has been growing, although not equally among all socioeconomic groups and age brackets.  Additional study and education on the public health benefits and risks of DTC genetic testing will be helpful.

Epigenetics: are there implications for personalised nutrition? Curr Opin Clin Nutr Metab Care. 2012 Sep;15(5):442-7. doi: 10.1097/MCO.0b013e3283567dd2. (PubMed ID: 22878237)
Overview of epigenetics in nutrition, including mention of both DNA methylation and DNA demethylation in response to diet, with growing evidence and relevance for personalized nutrition.

Predictive genomics DNA profiling for athletic performance. Recent Pat DNA Gene Seq. 2012 Dec;6(3):229-39. (PubMed ID: 22827597)
Genetic testing for athletics and sports is becoming a tool for potential optimization of both training and nutritional support.

Public awareness and use of direct-to-consumer personal genomic tests from four state population-based surveys, and implications for clinical and public health practice. Genet Med. 2012 Oct;14(10):860-7. Epub 2012 Jul 19. (PubMed ID: 22814860)
Results of surveys of public awareness about direct-to-consumer genetic testing are described, including use of testing relevant to nutrition. Discussion includes the growing need for better education to increase awareness of relevant evidence-based science among all socioeconomic groups.

Fat mass and obesity-associated gene (FTO) in eating disorders: evidence for association of the obesity risk allele with bulimia nervosa and anorexia nervosa. Obes Facts. 2012;5(3):408-19. Epub 2012 Jun 27. (PubMed ID: 22797368)
The variant of the FTO gene may be a risk factor for both anorexia nervosa and bulimia nervosa.

Biomarkers of nutrient bioactivity and efficacy: a route toward personalized nutrition. J Clin Gastroenterol. 2012 Aug;46(7):545-54. (PubMed ID: 22772736)
The identification of nutrigenomics-related biomarkers can result from the integration of nutrigenetics, epigenetics, metabolomics, proteomics, and transcriptomics.

Insertion-deletions in a FADS2 intron 1 conserved regulatory locus control expression of fatty acid desaturases 1 and 2 and modulate response to simvastatin. Prostaglandins Leukot Essent Fatty Acids. 2012 Jul;87(1):25-33. Epub 2012 Jun 27. (PubMed ID: 22748975)
Among Japanese, about 24% of the population has a minor haplotype (that is, a combination of less-common gene variants) that may be disadvantageous if changing to a Western diet with lower levels of long-chain omega-3 fatty acids. This may also occur in other populations on Western diets. Simvastatin upregulates both FADS1 and FADS2 gene expression, and this effect may be even more pronounced among those with the minor haplotype.

Nutriproteomics: a promising tool to link diet and diseases in nutritional research. Biochim Biophys Acta. 2012 Oct;1824(10):1107-17. Epub 2012 Jun 23. (PubMed ID: 22732351)
Review of the emerging usefulness of nutrition-relevant proteomics, with discussion of both its challenges and its promising potential for advancing personalized nutrition.

Relevant associations of the glucokinase regulatory protein/glucokinase gene variation with TAG concentrations in a high-cardiovascular risk population: modulation by the Mediterranean diet. Br J Nutr. 2013 Jan 28;109(2):193-201. doi: 10.1017/S0007114512000918. Epub 2012 Apr 13. (PubMed ID: 22716779)
The variant of the GCKR gene (also known as GCKR Pro446Leu) is associated with high blood triglycerides, but this was attenuated by a Mediterranean diet.

PNPLA3 I148M (rs738409) genetic variant is associated with hepatocellular carcinoma in obese individuals. Dig Liver Dis. 2012 Dec;44(12):1037-41. doi: 10.1016/j.dld.2012.05.006. Epub 2012 Jun 15. (PubMed ID: 22704398)
Among severely obese individuals, a variant of the PNPLA3 gene (Ile148Met) is associated with a significant 5.9-fold increased risk of liver cancer for each variant allele (i.e., whether one copy or two of this gene variant).

The coming of age of nutrigenetics and nutrigenomics. J Nutrigenet Nutrigenomics. 2012;5(1):I-II. Epub 2012 Jun 14. (PubMed ID: 22699841)
Nutrigenetics and nutrigenomics are emerging as important and potentially pivotal tools for helping improve both treatment and prevention of metabolic diseases, examples of which include obesity, diabetes, cardiovascular disease and cancer. Personalized nutrition will continue to advance along with corresponding developments in complementary technologies like proteomics, lipidomics, and metabolomics.

Induction of heme oxygenase-1 by chamomile protects murine macrophages against oxidative stress. Life Sci. 2012 Jun 27;90(25-26):1027-33. Epub 2012 Jun 5. (PubMed ID: 22683429)
Chamomile helps protect macrophages from hydrogen peroxide via activation of Nrf2 (also knows as NFE2L2).

Individualized weight management: what can be learned from nutrigenomics and nutrigenetics? Prog Mol Biol Transl Sci. 2012;108:347-82. (PubMed ID: 22656384)
An extensive listing of candidate gene variants influencing body weight is provided in Table II. Nutrigenetics and nutrigenomics have potential for helping identify subjects who can benefit most from specific nutritional interventions.

Nutrigenetics and nutrigenomics of caloric restriction. Prog Mol Biol Transl Sci. 2012;108:323-46. (PubMed ID: 22656383)
Responses to low-calorie diets are reviewed with respect to gene expression, and the affect of various gene variants.

Nutrigenomics and nutrigenetics of ω3 polyunsaturated fatty acids. Prog Mol Biol Transl Sci. 2012;108:75-112. (PubMed ID: 22656374)
The affects of omega-3 fatty acids on gene expression are described, as well as specific gene variants which can affect responses.

Fundamentals of nutrigenetics and nutrigenomics. Prog Mol Biol Transl Sci. 2012;108:1-15. (PubMed ID: 22656371)
Introduction to nutrigenetics and nutrigenomics, which the authors describe as "exciting and promising."

Polymorphisms in the serum- and glucocorticoid-inducible kinase 1 gene are associated with blood pressure and renin response to dietary salt intake. J Hum Hypertens. 2013 Mar;27(3):176-80. doi: 10.1038/jhh.2012.22. Epub 2012 May 31. (PubMed ID: 22648267)
Risk factors for salt-sensitive hypertension may include the following variants: and .

Hepatic fat accumulation is modulated by the interaction between the variant in the PNPLA3 gene and the dietary omega6/omega3 PUFA intake. PLoS One. 2012;7(5):e37827. Epub 2012 May 21. (PubMed ID: 22629460)
A diet richer in omega-6 fatty acids and lower in omega-3 fatty acids was associated with an increased risk of developing a fatty liver (non-alcoholic fatty liver disease) among carriers of a variant of the PNPLA3 gene.  Those who carry two copies of the variant (rs738409, also known as Ile148Met) may benefit from reducing the dietary omega-6/omega-3 ratio.

Paraoxonase 1 polymorphism and prenatal pesticide exposure associated with adverse cardiovascular risk profiles at school age. PLoS One. 2012;7(5):e36830. Epub 2012 May 15. (PubMed ID: 22615820)
Greater cardiovascular risk profiles (including obesity) were associated with children who were exposed to pesticides prenatally, and who carry one or two copies of a variant (Gln192Arg) in the PON1 gene.

Why are genetics important for nutrition? Lessons from epigenetic research. Ann Nutr Metab. 2012;60 Suppl 3:38-43. Epub 2012 May 15. (PubMed ID: 22614817)
The relationships between nutrition, epigenetics, gene regulation, and gene expression will become increasingly important over the next few years.

Polymorphisms in carcinogen metabolism enzymes, fish intake, and risk of prostate cancer. Carcinogenesis. 2012 Jul;33(7):1352-9. doi: 10.1093/carcin/bgs175. Epub 2012 May 18. (PubMed ID: 22610071)
Meat or fish cooked at high temperatures can produce carcinogenic substances.  Increased risk of localized prostate cancer among men consuming fish was associated with specific variants affecting the following detoxification enzyme genes:  EPHX1, CYP1B1, and GSTT1.  A variant of the PTGS2 gene was associated with advanced prostate cancer among men with high intakes of white fish.

Celiac disease, inflammation and oxidative damage: a nutrigenetic approach. Nutrients. 2012 Apr;4(4):243-57. Epub 2012 Mar 27. (PubMed ID: 22606367)
Nutritional genomics is helping to identify various gene expression pathways in celiac disease that may be responsive to interventions. These include certain long-chain fatty acids, antioxidant vitamins, polyphenols, and carotenoids.

Variants in the genes encoding TNF-α, IL-10, and GSTP1 influence the effect of α-tocopherol on inflammatory cell responses in healthy men. Am J Clin Nutr. 2012 Jun;95(6):1461-7. Epub 2012 May 9. (PubMed ID: 22572643)
The affect of alpha-tocopherol supplementation at both lower and higher intakes (75 IU or 600 IU/d) was studied with respect to its affect on levels of pro-inflammatory cytokines. Surprisingly, a reduction of these pro-inflammatory cytokines was not seen. Instead, a trend toward higher cytokine levels was found, although an increase did not occur for certain cytokines when certain gene variant alleles were also present (TNF -238G-A, or IL10 -1082G-A, or IL10 -592C-A, or GSTP1 313A-G).

Timing of introduction of gluten and celiac disease risk. Ann Nutr Metab. 2012;60 Suppl 2:22-9. Epub 2012 Apr 30. (PubMed ID: 22555186)
When introducing foods to infants to supplement breast milk, foods rich in gluten may increase the risk of developing celiac disease among infants who carry particular gene variant haplotypes, e.g., HLA-DQ2 or HLA-DQ8.

Extending healthy ageing: nutrient sensitive pathway and centenarian population. Immun Ageing. 2012 Apr 23;9:9. (PubMed ID: 22524452)
Interactions between genes and lifestyle/environment, including nutrition, may be important for healthy aging.

Vitamin D-related genetic variation, plasma vitamin D, and risk of lethal prostate cancer: a prospective nested case-control study. J Natl Cancer Inst. 2012 May 2;104(9):690-9. Epub 2012 Apr 12. (PubMed ID: 22499501)
Higher levels of 25-hydroxyvitamin D3 were associated with 57% lower risk of lethal prostate cancer among the mostly Caucasian men who were tested. Certain combinations of gene variants involved with vitamin D metabolism were also associated with risk of lethal prostate cancer.

Haptoglobin genotype and its role in determining heme-iron mediated vascular disease. Pharmacol Res. 2012 Jul;66(1):1-6. Epub 2012 Mar 23. (PubMed ID: 22465143)
The haptoglobin gene variants HP 1-1, HP 2-1, and HP 2-2 are described, which are carried by about 16%, 48%, and 36% of the populations in Western countries.  The HP 2-2 genotype in particular allows iron within hemoglobin to become pro-oxidative, resulting in an increased risk of oxidative stress and cardiovascular disease especially among diabetics.  Evidence for vitamin E supplementation being helpful to those carrying the HP 2-2 variant is also described.

Getting a head start: the importance of personal genetics education in high schools. Yale J Biol Med. 2012 Mar;85(1):87-92. Epub 2012 Mar 29. (PubMed ID: 22461746)
As genetic testing becomes progressively more common and affordable, education of the public is urgently needed, including about the benefits, risks, and ethical/social considerations of testing, as well as about the science. Examples of growing public awareness are provided, along with suggestions for how such education can be promoted among high school students, as well as among the public in general.

γ-Tocopherol inhibits human prostate cancer cell proliferation by up-regulation of transglutaminase 2 and down-regulation of cyclins. Amino Acids. 2013 Jan;44(1):45-51. doi: 10.1007/s00726-012-1278-y. Epub 2012 Mar 30. (PubMed ID: 22460364)
Gamma-tocopherol was found to be more effective than alpha-tocopherol for inhibiting prostate cancer cell proliferation in vitro, with potential relevance to treatment.

Associations between polymorphisms in genes involved in fatty acid metabolism and dietary fat intakes. J Nutrigenet Nutrigenomics. 2012;5(1):1-12. doi: 10.1159/000336511. Epub 2012 Mar 8. (PubMed ID: 22414759)
Variants in the following genes were found to be associated with dietary fat intakes:  PPARγ (PPARG) and FASN.

Interactions between the FTO polymorphism, body mass index, and lifestyle-related factors on metabolic syndrome risk. Nutr Res Pract. 2012 Feb;6(1):78-85. Epub 2012 Feb 29. (PubMed ID: 22413044)
The A allele of the variant of the FTO gene was associated with higher risk of developing metabolic syndrome. Carriers of this variant with a body mass index of 29 kg/m2 or higher may require a vigorous weight-loss regimen to avoid metabolic syndrome.

Selenium and human health. Lancet. 2012 Mar 31;379(9822):1256-68. Epub 2012 Feb 29. (PubMed ID: 22381456)
Selenium is critical for maintaining many proteins essential to health, affecting multiple systems such as proper immune functioning, antioxidant protections, various neoplasms, fertility, cardiovascular diseases, type-2 diabetes, etc. Although dietary supplementation or fortification may be helpful for some, excessive selenium intakes can also be problematic. Serum selenium concentrations of 130-150 micrograms/L have been associated with lower hazard ratios for all-cause mortality.

Correcting magnesium deficiencies may prolong life. Clin Interv Aging. 2012;7:51-4. Epub 2012 Feb 16. (PubMed ID: 22379366)
The importance of magnesium for cardiovascular health is even more apparent during space flight, when deficiency becomes especially problematic. Magnesium is not only important for cardiovascular health, but also for maintaining telomeres which can influence aging.  Future research will shed more light on the possible relationship between magnesium deficiency and aging, including on earth where tissue deficiencies are common.

Risk factors associated with metabolic syndrome in bipolar and schizophrenia subjects treated with antipsychotics: the role of folate pharmacogenetics. J Clin Psychopharmacol. 2012 Apr;32(2):261-5. (PubMed ID: 22370993)
Genetic variants affecting folic acid metabolism may be an additional risk factor for metabolic syndrome.  A relationship between impaired folate metabolism and schizophrenia is also beginning to emerge in the literature. Those with additional risk factors of age and smoking should be targeted for aggressive intervention, including diet, exercise, and smoking cessation.

Polymorphisms in 1-carbon metabolism, epigenetics and folate-related pathologies. J Nutrigenet Nutrigenomics. 2011;4(5):293-305. Epub 2012 Feb 22. (PubMed ID: 22353665)
Variants affecting one-carbon metabolism are described, include some in the following genes:  MTHFD1, ALDH1L1, MTHFR, MTR, and GNMT.

Epigenetics: a tool to understand diet-related cardiovascular risk? J Nutrigenet Nutrigenomics. 2011;4(5):261-74. Pub 2012 Feb 22. (PubMed ID: 22353663)
Review of epigenetic mechanisms including DNA methylation that can influence risk of atherosclerosis. Discussion includes food fortification, dietary supplements, folic acid, vitamin B-12, vitamin C, vitamin D, and vegetarianism. Epigenetics can help explain diet-related risk factors, and the authors suggest that epigenetic information should be used to complement genetic information.

Paving the way for personalised behaviourally based prevention of obesity: systematic search of the literature. Coll Antropol. 2012 Jan;36 Suppl 1:201-10. (PubMed ID: 22338772)
Progress is underway toward enabling personalized behavior-based prevention of obesity. Numerous gene variants are listed on 3 tables, although more research is still needed, especially with regard to reproducibility of results. The authors encourage "structured standards of reporting" to facilitate the translation/utilization of such research into both clinical use and public health practices.

Histone deacetylase modulators provided by Mother Nature. Genes Nutr. 2012 Feb 12. (PubMed ID: 22328271)
A listing of 35 naturally-occurring compounds is provided with evidence of their ability to influence histone deacetylases, including compounds from grapes, soy, citrus fruits, and cruciferous vegetables.  The authors suggest that such compounds should be further explored for their chemoprevention properties.

TMPRSS6, but not TF, TFR2 or BMP2 variants are associated with increased risk of iron-deficiency anemia. Hum Mol Genet. 2012 Feb 20. (PubMed ID: 22323359)
The Val736Ala variants of the TMPRSS6 gene were found to be associated with iron-deficiency anemia among Chinese women, although variants of TF and TFR2 genes were also found to be associated with reduced iron status.

Induction of antioxidative Nrf2 gene transcription by coffee in humans: depending on genotype? Mol Biol Rep. 2012 Jun;39(6):7155-62. (PubMed ID: 22314914)
Several variants of the NFE2L2 (Nrf2) gene were shown to be associated with lower baseline levels of related protective enzyme activity.  However, the coffee used in this study (a combination of both green and roasted bean constituents) stimulated increased transcription and greater protective activity, which was even more pronounced among carriers of the otherwise less-active gene variants.

Common variant (rs9939609) in the FTO gene is associated with metabolic syndrome. Mol Biol Rep. 2012 Jun;39(6):6555-61. Epub 2012 Feb 7. (PubMed ID: 22311015)
The variant of the FTO gene is significantly associated with metabolic syndrome in both European and Asian populations.

Vitamin D receptor and Alzheimer's disease: a genetic and functional study. Neurobiol Aging. 2012 Feb 3. (PubMed ID: 22306846)
Variants of the vitamin D receptor (VDR) gene have been associated with higher risk of Alzheimer disease. The Cdx2 variant (rs11568820) is discussed as an example, and is suggestive that vitamin D deficiency may also increase risk.

Low-dose dietary genistein negates the therapeutic effect of tamoxifen in athymic nude mice. Carcinogenesis. 2012 Apr;33(4):895-901. Epub 2012 Jan 20. (PubMed ID: 22266527)
Dietary genistein may interfere with tamoxifen therapy among women with breast cancer.

Dietary calcium supplementation enhances efficacy but also toxicity of EGFR inhibitor therapy for colon cancer. Cancer Biol Ther. 2012 Feb 1;13(3):130-7. Epub 2012 Feb 1. (PubMed ID: 22231407)
In model systems, supplemental calcium increased the effectiveness of the tested chemotherapy (EGFR inhibition), but also increased toxicity.  Caution should be exercised when combining supplements with antineoplastic therapies.

MTHFR C677T and MTR A2756G polymorphisms and the homocysteine lowering efficacy of different doses of folic acid in hypertensive Chinese adults. Nutr J. 2012 Jan 10;11:2. (PubMed ID: 22230384)
Variants in the MTHFR and MTR genes were found to affect homocysteine levels and responses to folic acid supplementation.

Amelioration of social isolation-triggered onset of early Alzheimer's disease-related cognitive deficit by N-acetylcysteine in a transgenic mouse model. Neurobiol Dis. 2012 Mar;45(3):1111-20. Epub 2011 Dec 27. (PubMed ID: 22227002)
N-acetylcysteine proved helpful in this mouse model of Alzheimer disease, prompting the authors to suggest that it might be helpful for humans also.

Omega-3-polyunsaturated fatty acids suppress pancreatic cancer cell growth in vitro and in vivo via downregulation of Wnt/Beta-catenin signaling. Pancreatology. 2011;11(6):574-84. Epub 2011 Dec 31. (PubMed ID: 22213040)
Based on results in model systems, both DHA and EPA omega-3 fatty acids may prove useful for the prevention or treatment of pancreatic cancer.

Common variation in vitamin D pathway genes predicts circulating 25-hydroxyvitamin D levels among African Americans. PLoS One. 2011;6(12):e28623. Epub 2011 Dec 21. (PubMed ID: 22205958)
Vitamin D status is influenced by common genetic variations in African Americans, which may help explain health disparities, or help with identification of those who may benefit from higher vitamin D intakes.

Rare variants in the CYP27B1 gene are associated with multiple sclerosis. Ann Neurol. 2011 Dec;70(6):881-6. doi: 10.1002/ana.22678. (PubMed ID: 22190362)
Variants in the CYP27B1 gene such as Arg389His result in lower levels of calcitriol (1,25-dihydroxyvitamin D3). This may explain a gene-environment relationship which has been seen between lower levels of UV light and higher risk of multiple sclerosis. The authors conclude by suggesting that vitamin D supplementation studies for prevention are "strongly warranted."

Interactions of single nucleotide polymorphisms with dietary calcium intake on the risk of metabolic syndrome. Am J Clin Nutr. 2012 Jan;95(1):231-40. Epub 2011 Dec 14. (PubMed ID: 22170361)
Higher intakes of dietary calcium are associated with lower risk of metabolic syndrome among Korean carriers of variants within or near the following genes: ARHGEF3, BUD13, and TBX5.  Beneficial effects of calcium have also been found in other studies, with discussion including affects on blood pressure and adipocytes.

Gluten sensitivity: problems of an emerging condition separate from celiac disease. Expert Rev Gastroenterol Hepatol. 2012 Feb;6(1):43-55. (PubMed ID: 22149581)
Gluten sensitivity apart from classical celiac disease is described and explored. Greater awareness and recognition of this condition may lead to more answers for many who may be affected.

Serum selenium and single-nucleotide polymorphisms in genes for selenoproteins: relationship to markers of oxidative stress in men from Auckland, New Zealand. Genes Nutr. 2012 Apr;7(2):179-90. doi: 10.1007/s12263-011-0259-1. Epub 2011 Dec 3. (PubMed ID: 22139612)
Adequacy of selenium is influenced by specific variants in GPX1 and GPX4 genes.

Nutrigenomics and personalized diets: What will they mean for food? Annu Rev Food Sci Technol. 2011;2:97-123. (PubMed ID: 22129377)
Although genotyping may be useful for a limited number of genetic variants affecting health, proteomics and metabolomics are also useful tools for assessment and for selecting personalized solutions. Table 1 lists gene variants relevant to essential nutrients, and Table 2 lists variants relevant to nonessential nutrients such as isothiocyanates, carotenoids, saturated fatty acids, etc. The authors conclude by expressing optimism about personalizing diets.

Intake of branched-chain amino acids influences the levels of MAFbx mRNA and MuRF-1 total protein in resting and exercising human muscle. Am J Physiol Endocrinol Metab. 2012 Mar;302(5):E510-21. doi: 10.1152/ajpendo.00353.2011. Epub 2011 Nov 29. (PubMed ID: 22127230)
Branched-chain amino acid supplementation may be helpful with regard to an anabolic effect on muscle.

Single nucleotide polymorphisms upstream from the β-carotene 15,15'-monoxygenase gene influence provitamin A conversion efficiency in female volunteers. J Nutr. 2012 Jan;142(1):161S-5S. Epub 2011 Nov 23. (PubMed ID: 22113863)
Many individuals are less efficient at converting beta-carotene into provitamin A (retinal). Several variants of the BCMO1 gene were found to reduce the efficiency of this conversion.

Confidence of primary care physicians in their ability to carry out basic medical genetic tasks--a European survey in five countries-Part 1. J Community Genet. 2011 Mar;2(1):1-11. Epub 2010 Dec 4. (PubMed ID: 22109718)
In Europe, confidence about genetics knowledge is especially low among primary care physicians, showing a need for improved, coordinated education about genetics.

Metabolic syndrome: Evidences for a personalized nutrition. Mol Nutr Food Res. 2012 Jan;56(1):67-76. doi: 10.1002/mnfr.201100531. Epub 2011 Nov 17. (PubMed ID: 22095824)
New research is beginning to reveal important gene-environment interactions that may be useful for prevention of metabolic syndrome by use of personalized nutrition. Variants of the following genes are discussed: ADIPOQ, ADIPOR1, ADIPOR2, CAPN10, GCKR, TCF7L2, and LEPR.

The isoform-specific pathological effects of apoE4 in vivo are prevented by a fish oil (DHA) diet and are modified by cholesterol. J Alzheimers Dis. 2012;28(3):667-83. (PubMed ID: 22057027)
Dietary fish oil may be helpful in reducing the increased risk of Alzheimer disease resulting from the APOE E4 variant.

Genome-wide association study reveals class I MHC-restricted T cell-associated molecule gene (CRTAM) variants interact with vitamin D levels to affect asthma exacerbations. J Allergy Clin Immunol. 2012 Feb;129(2):368-73, 373.e1-5. Epub 2011 Nov 1. (PubMed ID: 22051697)
Evidence was found for the importance of avoiding vitamin D deficiency among patients with high-risk asthma. A relevant variant in the CRTAM gene is described.

The role of magnesium in hypertension and cardiovascular disease. J Clin Hypertens (Greenwich). 2011 Nov;13(11):843-7. (PubMed ID: 22051430)
Intakes of 500-1000 mg/d of magnesium are associated with reductions in blood pressure, especially in combination with extra potassium and reductions in sodium. The author also suggests 1000-2000 mg of supplemental taurine (e.g., as magnesium taurate). Magnesium is essential for various gene products, including enzymes related to vasoconstriction. Genes mentioned include SLC41A1, ACDP2/CNNM2, MAGT1, TRPM6 and TRPM7.

Heme iron from meat and risk of adenocarcinoma of the esophagus and stomach. Eur J Cancer Prev. 2012 Mar;21(2):134-8. (PubMed ID: 22044848)
Heme iron from higher intakes of red meat was associated with an increased risk of esophageal and stomach adenocarcinomas. Mechanisms by which an increased risk might occur could include iron-induced oxidative stress or DNA damage, or formation of N-nitroso compounds (nitrosamines).

Gene-diet interactions in childhood obesity. Curr Genomics. 2011 May;12(3):180-9. (PubMed ID: 22043166)
Interactions with variants in 4 genes (FTO, MC4R, NPC1 and APOA2) with high-fat foods or with high saturated-fat foods are described. Such information may eventually lead to targeted treatments.

Curcumin inhibits interferon gamma signaling in colonic epithelial cells. Am J Physiol Gastrointest Liver Physiol. 2012 Jan 1;302(1):G85-96. doi: 10.1152/ajpgi.00275.2011. Epub 2011 Oct 28. (PubMed ID: 22038826)
The affect of curcumin on gene expression of colonocytes is described, with relevance to colitis and inflammatory bowel diseases.

Oxidative stress in health and disease: the therapeutic potential of Nrf2 activation. Mol Aspects Med. 2011 Aug;32(4-6):234-46. Epub 2011 Oct 15. (PubMed ID: 22020111)
Gene expression related to Nrf2 (NFE2L2) is reviewed, which can affect numerous health conditions.

Dietary flavonoids are neuroprotective through Nrf2-coordinated induction of endogenous cytoprotective proteins. Nutr Neurosci. 2011 Sep;14(5):226-36. (PubMed ID: 22005287)
Nrf2 (NFE2L2 gene) is emerging as an important regulator of neuroprotective gene expression resulting from dietary flavonoids. This may lead to novel complementary and alternative therapies for various neurological disorders, including strokes.

Epigenetic events associated with breast cancer and their prevention by dietary components targeting the epigenome. Chem Res Toxicol. 2012 Jan 13;25(1):61-73. Epub 2011 Oct 28. (PubMed ID: 21992498)
The capability of various dietary components to reduce breast cancer risk via epigenetic mechanisms is reviewed.

Black tea extract prevents lipopolysaccharide-induced NF-κB signaling and attenuates dextran sulfate sodium-induced experimental colitis. BMC Complement Altern Med. 2011 Oct 11;11:91. (PubMed ID: 21989142)
Black tea extract was found to reduce colon inflammation by blocking NF-kappaB signaling and apoptosis.

Increased telomerase activity and vitamin D supplementation in overweight African Americans. Int J Obes (Lond). 2012 Jun;36(6):805-9. Epub 2011 Oct 11. (PubMed ID: 21986705)
Vitamin D supplementation among overweight African Americans was found to improve telomerase activity. The authors suggest that vitamin D may slow obesity-induced cellular aging.

Mapping rare and common causal alleles for complex human diseases. Cell. 2011 Sep 30;147(1):57-69. (PubMed ID: 21962507)
This is a 13-page primer on how rare and common variants contribute to complex diseases. A brief glossary of terms is provided along with discussion of selected topics such as genome-wide association studies, haplotypes, linkage disequilibrium, noncoding variants, and chromatin modifications.

Genetic variations involved in interindividual variability in carotenoid status. Mol Nutr Food Res. 2012 Feb;56(2):228-40. doi: 10.1002/mnfr.201100322. Epub 2011 Sep 29. (PubMed ID: 21957063)
There is significant inter-individual variation in carotenoid absorption and tissue storage levels. A variety of gene products can influence carotenoid levels, including:  BCMO1, BCDO2 (BCO2), SR-BI (SCARB1), CD36, NPC1L1, GSTP1, HR-LBP (STARD3), and ABCG5 among others. Additional research may help identify individualized dietary needs for carotenoids.

Brain-derived neurotrophic factor, food intake regulation, and obesity. Arch Med Res. 2011 Aug;42(6):482-94. Epub 2011 Sep 22. (PubMed ID: 21945389)
Appetite regulation is affected by various genes, including BDNF. Variants of the BDNF gene such as Val66Met (rs6265) have been associated with binge eating. Since BDNF levels can be affected by various epigenetic/environmental factors (including strict food restriction), attention to environmental factors, especially during early development, may prove helpful in the prevention of various eating disorders and obesity.

Vitamin D and susceptibility of chronic lung diseases: role of epigenetics. Front Pharmacol. 2011;2:50. Epub 2011 Aug 30. (PubMed ID: 21941510)
This review updates information on vitamin D and vitamin D receptor (VDR) in relation to gene expression and epigenetics, with relevance to the prevention and treatment of lung diseases.

Lifestyle and genetics in obesity and type 2 diabetes. Exp Clin Endocrinol Diabetes. 2012 Jan;120(1):1-6. Epub 2011 Sep 13. (PubMed ID: 21915815)
Although lifestyle interventions can be helpful for conditions like obesity and type-2 diabetes regardless of genotype, it's also possible that genotype information could become helpful with regard to personalization of such interventions.

The vitamin D receptor gene is associated with Alzheimer's disease. Neurosci Lett. 2011 Oct 24;504(2):79-82. Epub 2011 Sep 3. (PubMed ID: 21911036)
TaqI and ApaI variants of the vitamin D receptor (VDR) gene were associated with a 3.0-3.1 fold increased risk of Alzheimer disease in subjects younger than 75 years, in this case-control study. Additional study of vitamin D is recommended in light of its influence on inflammation-related genes.

Vitamin D and cardiovascular disease. J Am Coll Nutr. 2011 Jun;30(3):167-70. (PubMed ID: 21896873)
Vitamin D regulates the expression of various genes, and deficiency of vitamin D is common.  Growing evidence suggests that vitamin D is important for cardiovascular health, and that it may be a cardiovascular risk factor.

Calcium intake and prostate cancer among African Americans: effect modification by vitamin D receptor calcium absorption genotype. J Bone Miner Res. 2012 Jan;27(1):187-94. doi: 10.1002/jbmr.505. (PubMed ID: 21887707)
Although calcium may help protect against colorectal cancer, higher calcium intakes among African American men was associated with an increased risk of prostate cancer in this study, especially among those with enhanced intestinal absorption of calcium (i.e., those who carry two copies of the Cdx2 variant of the VDR gene).

Gene polymorphisms and low dietary intake of micronutrients in coronary artery disease. J Nutrigenet Nutrigenomics. 2011;4(4):203-9. Epub 2011 Aug 26. (PubMed ID: 21876361)
Lower intakes of folate, in combination with a variant of the BHMT gene (742G-A, also known as Arg239Gln), may increase the risk of coronary artery disease.

Genetic and nutritional interactions in cardiovascular disease. World Rev Nutr Diet. 2011;102:150-5. Epub 2011 Aug 5. (PubMed ID: 21865829)
Nutrition plays a large role in modulating gene expression, and in influencing many of the modifiable risk factors associated with a first myocardial infarction. Variants in genes like ALOX5 and in APOA1 are mentioned as examples. The APOA5 -1131T-C variant is also described in some detail.

Introducing nutritional genomics teaching in undergraduate dietetic curricula. J Nutrigenet Nutrigenomics. 2011;4(3):165-72. Epub 2011 Aug 23. (PubMed ID: 21860246)
A plan for introducing nutrigenetics and nutrigenomics into the dietetic curricula is described, which holds great promise for improving personal health management.

Question 2. What is the incidence of biotin deficiency in preschool children with global developmental delay? Arch Dis Child. 2011 Sep;96(9):895-7. (PubMed ID: 21836181)
Biotin deficiency here refers to biotinidase deficiency, an inherited disorder. Its incidence has been estimated to be about 1 in 35000 overall, but among children with learning disorders or developmental disabilities, the incidence is at least 3-6 fold higher.  Measurement of biotinidase activity should occur early in the investigation of global developmental delay, since early diagnosis and treatment with biotin supplements is important to prevent lifelong disabilities.

NOS3 Glu298Asp polymorphism interacts with virgin olive oil phenols to determine the postprandial endothelial function in patients with the metabolic syndrome. J Clin Endocrinol Metab. 2011 Oct;96(10):E1694-702. Epub 2011 Aug 3. (PubMed ID: 21816783)
The Glu298Asp (or 894G-T) variant of NOS3 is considered a risk factor for hypertension and cardiovascular disease associated with endothelial dysfunction.  In this study, subjects with metabolic syndrome who carry two copies of this variant were found to have lower postprandial levels of endothelial NOS.  Most of this difference was reduced when high-phenol olive oil was used instead of low-phenol olive oil.

The therapeutic potential of manipulating gut microbiota in obesity and type 2 diabetes mellitus. Diabetes Obes Metab. 2012 Feb;14(2):112-20. (PubMed ID: 21812894)
The relevance of intestinal microbiota to type-2 diabetes and obesity is explored, including discussion of prebiotics, probiotics, and synbiotics providing both.

Genomic biomarkers and clinical outcomes of physical activity. Ann N Y Acad Sci. 2011 Jul;1229:103-14. doi: 10.1111/j.1749-6632.2011.06091.x. (PubMed ID: 21793845)
Evidence is provided showing that physical activity is especially important for carriers of the "null" or "absent" variant of both the GSTM1 and GSTT1 genes.

MicroRNAs, diet, and cancer: new mechanistic insights on the epigenetic actions of phytochemicals. Mol Carcinog. 2012 Mar;51(3):213-30. (PubMed ID: 21739482)
Dietary nutrients and phytochemicals can exert their chemopreventive effects partially by their influence on microRNAs (miRNAs) which influence gene expression. Table 1 provides a listing of miRNAs which affect cancer-related genes. Discussion includes vitamins A, D, E, folic acid, selenium, omega-3 fatty acids, curcumin, resveratrol, epigallocatechin gallate, isoflavones, indoles, and isothiocyanates.

Vitamin E therapy results in a reduction in HDL function in individuals with diabetes and the haptoglobin 2-1 genotype. Atherosclerosis. 2011 Nov;219(1):240-4. Epub 2011 Jun 13. (PubMed ID: 21722898)
400 IU/day of vitamin E was found to improve HDL function among diabetics who carry the haptoglobin 2-2 genotype; however, vitamin E at this level was found to impair HDL function among those carrying the 2-1 genotype.  The authors describe this difference as biologically significant, with potentially profound public health significance that warrants additional study.

Personalized medicine: progress and promise. Annu Rev Genomics Hum Genet. 2011 Sep 22;12:217-44. (PubMed ID: 21721939)
Overview of personalized medicine, which is described as including genetic/genomic and environmental information as well as clinical data. Discussion includes transcriptomics, proteomics, metabolomics, epigenetics, systems biology, pharmacogenetics, and genetics-related education. The authors suggest that "personalized medicine has arrived," and is steadily growing.

Lycopene inhibits NF-kB-mediated IL-8 expression and changes redox and PPARγ signalling in cigarette smoke-stimulated macrophages. PLoS One. 2011;6(5):e19652. Epub 2011 May 19. (PubMed ID: 21625550)
The anti-inflammatory action of lycopene in cells exposed to cigarette smoke is explored, with evidence of a mechanism involving the inactivation of NF-kappaB.

Nutrigenetics and nutrigenomics: viewpoints on the current status and applications in nutrition research and practice. J Nutrigenet Nutrigenomics. 2011;4(2):69-89. Epub 2011 May 28. (PubMed ID: 21625170)
Introductory overview of the basic principles, terminology, and applications of nutrigenetics and nutrigenomics which may transform nutrition and dietetics, and the important implications of such transformation.

Genetic background of multiple sclerosis. Autoimmun Rev. 2012 Jan;11(3):163-6. doi: 10.1016/j.autrev.2011.05.007. Epub 2011 May 18. (PubMed ID: 21619948)
Both gene-gene and gene-environment interactions are likely to occur with complex disorders such as multiple sclerosis.

Genetic variations of the melatonin pathway in patients with attention-deficit and hyperactivity disorders. J Pineal Res. 2011 Nov;51(4):394-9. doi: 10.1111/j.1600-079X.2011.00902.x. Epub 2011 May 26. (PubMed ID: 21615493)
Among ADHD patients in Sweden, a deficiency in melatonin signaling was associated with variants in the following genes:  ASMT, and MTNR1A.

Iron as a target of chemoprevention for longevity in humans. Free Radic Res. 2011 Aug;45(8):906-17. Epub 2011 May 26. (PubMed ID: 21615276)
Although dietary iron is important for the prevention of deficiencies, iron overload can increase health risks including cancer by multiple mechanisms involving the following:  CDKN2A, CDKN2B, and SLC40A1 (ferroportin).

Prenatal vitamins, one-carbon metabolism gene variants, and risk for autism. Epidemiology. 2011 Jul;22(4):476-85. (PubMed ID: 21610500)
Risk of autism may be reduced by use of prenatal vitamins, especially among mothers with gene variants affecting one-carbon metabolism.

The impact of common gene variants on the response of biomarkers of cardiovascular disease (CVD) risk to increased fish oil fatty acids intakes. Annu Rev Nutr. 2011 Aug 21;31:203-34. (PubMed ID: 21568708)
This review article describes inconsistencies in response to dietary omega-3 fatty acids, and provides an extensive listing and discussion of genes and gene variants which may be responsible. More research is warranted in light of its "wide public health relevance."

Discovering how environmental exposures alter genes could lead to new treatments for chronic illnesses. Health Aff (Millwood). 2011 May;30(5):833-41. (PubMed ID: 21555469)
The affect of both physical and social environments on gene expression and health is described, including its growing relevance to public health.

Racial disparity in blood pressure: is vitamin D a factor? J Gen Intern Med. 2011 Oct;26(10):1105-11. (PubMed ID: 21509604)
Findings from this study support an association between lower vitamin D status and higher blood pressure among African Americans.

The advent of personal genome sequencing. Genet Med. 2011 Mar;13(3):188-90. (PubMed ID: 21311341)
Affordable sequencing of personal genomes is on the horizon, which will be a valuable tool. Education of both health professionals and the public will be critical for its effective and proper utilization.

Genetic testing and common disorders in a public health framework. Eur J Hum Genet. 2011 Apr;19(4):377-81. Epub 2011 Jan 26. (PubMed ID: 21267009)
A variety of considerations about genetic testing are presented. Topics include direct-to-consumer testing, government regulation, ethics, social responsibility, genetic counseling, and the need for better education about genetics for both professionals and the public at large.

Lycopene regulation of cholesterol synthesis and efflux in human macrophages. J Nutr Biochem. 2011 Oct;22(10):971-8. doi: 10.1016/j.jnutbio.2010.08.010. Epub 2011 Jan 3. (PubMed ID: 21208793)
The mechanisms by which lycopene may help prevent atherosclerosis include its affects on the expression of the following genes and related proteins:  ABCA1, CAV1, RHOA, PPARG, RHOA, and HMGCR.

Magnesium supplementation, metabolic and inflammatory markers, and global genomic and proteomic profiling: a randomized, double-blind, controlled, crossover trial in overweight individuals. Am J Clin Nutr. 2011 Feb;93(2):463-73. Epub 2010 Dec 15. (PubMed ID: 21159786)
Supplementation of magnesium (500 mg per day as magnesium citrate) for 4 weeks in overweight subjects resulted in favorable gene expression changes.

Cancer chemoprevention by targeting the epigenome. Curr Drug Targets. 2011 Dec;12(13):1925-56. (PubMed ID: 21158707)
Chemopreventive effects of micronutrients and various botanical constituents are discussed with respect to epigenetic mechanisms, including microRNAs, DNA methylation and histone modifications.

Pharma-nutrition interface: the gap is narrowing. Eur J Pharmacol. 2011 Jan 25;651(1-3):1-8. (PubMed ID: 21114994)
This article reviews the growing overlap between pharmacology and nutrition, including functional foods.

The need for medical education reform: genomics and the changing nature of health information. Genome Med. 2010 Mar 17;2(3):18. (PubMed ID: 20236478)
Brief commentary describing how educational reforms are needed to help both students and clinicians better handle genetics information and its interpretation.

(Article descriptons have been graciously contributed by Nutrigenetics Unlimited, Inc., © 2015)

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