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Adv Nutr. 2011 Nov;2(6):511-9. doi: 10.3945/an.111.001057. Epub 2011 Nov 3.

Translational regulation in nutrigenomics.

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Graduate Field of Genetics and Development, Division of Nutritional Sciences, Cornell University, Ithaca, NY 14853, USA.


The emergence of genome-wide analysis to interrogate cellular DNA, RNA, and protein content has revolutionized the study of the control network that mediates cellular homeostasis. Nutrigenomics addresses the effect of nutrients on gene expression, which provides a basis for understanding the biological activity of dietary components. Translation of mRNAs represents the last step of genetic flow and primarily defines the proteome. Translational regulation is thus critical for gene expression, in particular, under nutrient excess or deficiency. Until recently, it was unclear how the global effects of translational control are influenced by nutrient signaling. An emerging concept of translational reprogramming addresses how to maintain the expression of specific proteins during pathophysiological conditions by translation of selective mRNAs. Here we describe recent advances in our understanding of translational control, nutrient signaling, and their dysregulation in aging and cancer. The mechanistic understanding of translational regulation in response to different nutrient conditions may help identify potential dietary and therapeutic targets to improve human health.

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