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Asia Pac J Clin Nutr. 2008;17 Suppl 1:119-22.

Genotype-dependent response to energy-restricted diets in obese subjects: towards personalized nutrition.

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  • 1University of Navarra, Department of Nutrition and Food Sciences, Physiology and Toxicology, C/Irunlarrea, Pamplona 31008, Spain.


Obesity is a complex disease, which in many cases appears as a polygenic condition affected by environmental factors (mainly unbalanced dietary patterns and physical inactivity). In this context, the weight loss response to dietary interventions varies widely and predictive factors of successful slimming including those concerned with the individual's genetic make-up are poorly understood. Indeed, a number of genes involved in the regulation of energy expenditure, appetite, lipid metabolism and adipogenesis have been reported to affect the risk of treatment failure in some obese subjects. Some candidate genes for the prognosis of weight loss response related to energy expenditure are those codifying for the adrenergic receptors (ADBRs) and uncoupling proteins (UCPs), while genes related to appetite potentially affected by energy restriction are leptin (LEP), leptin receptor (LEPR), melanocortin pathways genes (MC3R, POMC) and the serotonin receptor. Furthermore, adipogenesis related genes such as peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor (PPAR gamma 2) and genes related to cytokines such as interleukin-6 (IL-6) and lipid metabolism including hepatic lipase (LIPC), perilipin (PLIN) and lipoprotein lipase (LPL) have also been associated to the weight lowering outcome induced by hypocaloric diets. Therefore, this review shows preliminary evidence from human studies that support the existence of a genetic component in the fat reduction process associated to a negative energy balance.

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