Fundamentals of nutrigenetics and nutrigenomics

Prog Mol Biol Transl Sci. 2012:108:1-15. doi: 10.1016/B978-0-12-398397-8.00001-0.


This volume of Progress in Molecular Biology and Translational Science is devoted to the exciting and promising field of nutrigenetics and nutrigenomics. The introductory chapter defines the basic concepts necessary for the interpretation of the material covered in the remainder of the volume. Emphasis is on the concept of personalized nutrition and its likely role in public health and disease prevention, as well as in therapeutics. Nutrigenetics refers to the role of DNA sequence variation in the responses to nutrients, whereas nutrigenomics is the study of the role of nutrients in gene expression. This research is predicated on the assumption that there are individual differences in responsiveness to acute or repeated exposures to a given nutrient or combination of nutrients. Throughout human history, diet has affected the expression of genes, resulting in phenotypes that are able to successfully respond to environmental challenges and that allow better exploitation of food resources. These adaptations have been key to human growth and development. Technological advances have made it possible to investigate not only specific genes but also to explore in unbiased designs the whole genome-wide complement of DNA sequence variants or transcriptome. These advances provide an opportunity to establish the foundation for incorporating biological individuality into dietary recommendations, with significant therapeutic potential.

Publication types

  • Introductory Journal Article

MeSH terms

  • Humans
  • Nutrigenomics*
  • Precision Medicine
  • Preventive Medicine