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The Role of Nutrigenetics - Essay Example

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genetic variation, especially presence of certain common SNPs, can cause variation in dietary response: e.g.: polymorphisms causing variance in levels of serum cholesterol and blood pressure can cause variance in dietary response (Artemis P. Simopolous, 2002, Genetic Variation and Dietary Response: Nutrigenetics/Nutrigenomics), and
dietary nutrients, as chemicals and as primary environmental factors that influence evolution, influence gene expression: e.g.: polyunsaturated fatty acids suppress fatty acid synthase (mRNA) gene expression (Artemis P. Simopolous, 2002, Genetic Variation and Dietary Response: Nutrigenetics/Nutrigenomics).
Dietary intake, by influencing gene expression, can become the associative cause of certain chronic diseases like atherosclerosis, diabetes, obesity, cancer, and others (Nutritional genomics: the next frontier in the post-genomic era, Jim Kaput and Raymond L. Rodriguez, 2003).
The first definition of nutrigenomics this research paper starts out with presents the science as being more effective for interactions of the first kind - genetic variation affecting dietary response - but in the light of the primary objective of this paper which is to maintain that nutrigenomics can be effective as a means to preventing, mitigating and curing a chronic disease - type 2 diabetes - the following definition, though it is succinct, will be more appropriate. The science of the dietary interface and the cellular/genetic processes is known as nutrigenomics. The science explores ways and means by which dietary intakes can change a healthy phenotype to a chronic disease phenotype by changes in gene expression or variance in activities of proteins and enzymes, which can secondarily cause changes in gene expression (Nutritional genomics: the next frontier in the post-genomic era, Jim Kaput and Raymond L. Rodriguez, 2003). Ignatovski first noticed this association between dietary intake and chronic disease in 1908. He observed development of arterial lesions in mice fed on a special variant diet.
Type 2 Diabetes
Though type 2 diabetes was considered as mild in the past it is today an almost endemic disease. Sedentary lifestyles, increased obesity and higher average age of populations have had the combined effects of increased incidence of the disease. Today, even young people are diagnosed with it (Initial Management of Glycemia in Type 2 Diabetes Mellitus, David M. Nathan, MD, 2002). A WHO 2002 report presented at the Third World Congress on the Prevention of Diabetes suggested that the worldwide incidence of diabetes would exceed 450 million by 2025. More recent WHO studies estimate that over 1 billion people are obese and over 400 million clinically obese (MR Green and F van der Ouderaa, 2003).
Causes of Diabetes
Diet genotype X interaction is clearly responsible for type 2 diabetes. Sedentary, obese individuals and members of certain minority groups are prone to it (Nutrigenomics, University of California at Davis, 2004). This last suggests involvement of certain SNPs specific to such minority groups. Nevertheless, ...Show more


Nutrigenetics, also commonly called nutrigenomics, is a recent development of nutritional science that matches nutritional requirements of an individual to his or her personal genetic makeup. The individual's DNA is tested for common SNPs (single nucleotide polymorphisms) and a specific diet is suggested to help the person stay healthy.
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The Role of Nutrigenetics essay example
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