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Nutrigenetics—personalized nutrition in obesity and cardiovascular diseases


Epidemiological data support the view that both obesity and cardiovascular diseases (CVD) account for a high proportion of total morbidity and mortality in adults throughout the world. Obesity and CVD have complex interplay mechanisms of genetic and environmental factors, including diet. Nutrition is an environmental factor and it has a predominant and recognizable role in health management and in the prevention of obesity and obesity-related diseases, including CVD. However, there is a marked variation in CVD in patients with obesity and the same dietary pattern. The different genetic polymorphisms could explain this variation, which leads to the emergence of the concept of nutrigenetics. Nutritional genomics or nutrigenetics is the science that studies and characterizes gene variants associated with differential response to specific nutrients and relating this variation to various diseases, such as CVD related to obesity. Thus, the personalized nutrition recommendations, based on the knowledge of an individual’s genetic background, might improve the outcomes of a specific dietary intervention and represent a new dietary approach to improve health, reducing obesity and CVD. Given these premises, it is intuitive to suppose that the elucidation of diet and gene interactions could support more specific and effective dietary interventions in both obesity and CVD prevention through personalized nutrition based on nutrigenetics. This review aims to briefly summarize the role of the most important genes associated with obesity and CVD and to clarify the knowledge about the relation between nutrition and gene expression and the role of the main nutrition-related genes in obesity and CVD.

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Fig. 1: Nutrigenetics-personalized nutrition in obesity and cardiovascular diseases.


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Obesity Programs of nutrition, Education, Research and Assessment (OPERA) group members served as collaborators and approved the final version of the manuscript: Colao Annamaria, Savastano Silvia, Barrea Luigi, Muscogiuri Giovanna, Alviggi Carlo, Angrisani Luigi, Annunziata Giuseppe, Beguinot Francesco, Belfiore Annamaria, Belfiore Antonino, Bellastella Giuseppe, Biondi Bernadette, Bonaduce Domenico, Bordoni Laura, Brasacchio Caterina, Capaldo Brunella, Caprio Massimiliano, Cataldi Mauro, Cignarelli Angelo, Cittadini Antonello, Conforti Alessandro, Cuomo Rosario, De Placido Giuseppe, De Siena Marina, Di Carlo Costantino, Di Luigi Luigi, Di Nisio Andrea, Di Renzo Laura, Di Somma Carolina, Docimo Ludovico, Donini Lorenzo Maria, Federici Massimo, Foresta Carlo, Gabbianelli Rosita, Gambineri Alessandra, Gastaldelli Amalia, Giallauria Francesco, Giardiello Cristiano, Gnessi Lucio, Guida Brunella, Laudisio Daniela, Lenzi Andrea, Macchia Paolo Emidio, Manno Emilio, Marzullo Paolo, Migliaccio Silvia, Muratori Fabrizio, Musella Mario, Nardone Gerardo, Nicasto Vincenzo, Piazza Luigi, Pilone Vincenzo, Pivari Francesca, Pivonello Rosario, Pugliese Gabriella, Riccardi Gabriele, Ritieni Alberto, Salzano Ciro, Sanduzzi Alessandro, Sbraccia Paolo, Sesti Giorgio, Soldati Laura, Taglialatela Maurizio, Trimarco Bruno, Tuccinardi Dario.


The 2019 OPERA meeting was organized by Panta Rei Srl and sponsored by Novo Nordisk, Therascience, Bruno Pharma, Merck, Savio Pharma Italia Srl, IBSA Institut Biochimique SA, Bioitalia Srl, Cohesion Pharmaceutical, and Specchiasol Srl. Publication of this article as part of a supplement was sponsored by Panta Rei Srl, Naples, Italy. The meeting sponsors and organizer did not have access to the manuscripts and the authors maintained control of the content.

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The authors’ responsibilities were as follows: LB, GA, LB, and SS were responsible for the concept of this paper and drafted the manuscript; GM, AC, and SS provided a critical review of the paper. LB, GA, and LB are equally contributed to this work. OPERA Group members participated to the revision of the manuscript. All authors and OPERA Group Members contributed to and agreed on the final version of the manuscript.

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Correspondence to Luigi Barrea.

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Barrea, L., Annunziata, G., Bordoni, L. et al. Nutrigenetics—personalized nutrition in obesity and cardiovascular diseases. Int J Obes Supp 10, 1–13 (2020).

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