The nutritional phenotype in the age of metabolomics

S. H. Zeisel, H. C. Freake, D. E. Bauman, D. M. Bier, D. G. Burrin, J. B. German, S. Klein, G. S. Marquis, J. A. Milner, G. H. Pelto, K. M. Rasmussen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

80 Scopus citations

Abstract

The concept of the nutritional phenotype is proposed as a defined and integrated set of genetic, proteomic, metabolomic, functional, and behavioral factors that, when measured, form the basis for assessment of human nutritional status. The nutritional phenotype integrates the effects of diet on disease/wellness and is the quantitative indication of the paths by which genes and environment exert their effects on health. Advances in technology and in fundamental biological knowledge make it possible to define and measure the nutritional phenotype accurately in a cross section of individuals with various states of health and disease. This growing base of data and knowledge could serve as a resource for all scientific disciplines involved in human health. Nutritional sciences should be a prime mover in making key decisions that include: what environmental inputs (in addition to diet) are needed; what genes/proteins/metabolites should be measured; what end-point phenotypes should be included; and what informatics tools are available to ask nutritionally relevant questions. Nutrition should be the major discipline establishing how the elements of the nutritional phenotype vary as a function of diet. Nutritional sciences should also be instrumental in linking the elements that are responsive to diet with the functional outcomes in organisms that derive from them. As the first step in this initiative, a prioritized list of genomic, proteomic, and metabolomic as well as functional and behavioral measures that defines a practically useful subset of the nutritional phenotype for use in clinical and epidemiological investigations must be developed. From this list, analytic platforms must then be identified that are capable of delivering highly quantitative data on these endpoints. This conceptualization of a nutritional phenotype provides a concrete form and substance to the recognized future of nutritional sciences as a field addressing diet, integrated metabolism, and health.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1613-1616
Number of pages4
JournalJournal of Nutrition
Volume135
Issue number7
StatePublished - Jul 2005
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine (miscellaneous)
  • Food Science

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    Zeisel, S. H., Freake, H. C., Bauman, D. E., Bier, D. M., Burrin, D. G., German, J. B., Klein, S., Marquis, G. S., Milner, J. A., Pelto, G. H., & Rasmussen, K. M. (2005). The nutritional phenotype in the age of metabolomics. Journal of Nutrition, 135(7), 1613-1616.