Lunch eating predicts weight-loss effectiveness in carriers of the common allele at PERILIPIN1: the ONTIME (Obesity, Nutrigenetics, Timing, Mediterranean) study

Am J Clin Nutr. 2016 Oct;104(4):1160-1166. doi: 10.3945/ajcn.116.134528. Epub 2016 Sep 14.


Background: We propose that eating lunch late impairs the mobilization of fat from adipose tissue, particularly in carriers of PERILIPIN1 (PLIN1) variants.

Objective: The aim was to test the hypothesis that PLIN1, a circadian lipid-stabilizing protein in the adipocyte, interacts with the timing of food intake to affect weight loss.

Design: A total of 1287 overweight and obese subjects [229 men and 1058 women; mean ± SD body mass index (in kg/m2): 31 ± 5] who attended outpatient obesity clinics were enrolled in the ONTIME (Obesity, Nutrigenetics, Timing, Mediterranean) study. Timing of food intake was estimated with a validated questionnaire. Anthropometric variables and PLIN1 genotypes were analyzed, including 6209T>C (rs2289487), 11482G>A (rs894160), 13041A>G (rs2304795), and 14995A>T (rs1052700). The main outcomes were effectiveness of the program and weight-loss progression during 28 wk of treatment.

Results: The PLIN1 locus was associated with variability in response to a weight-loss program. Specifically, carrying the minor C allele at the PLIN1 6209T>C was associated with better weight-loss response (P = 0.035). The probability of being a better responder [percentage of weight loss ≥7.5% (median)] was 33% higher among C than among TT carriers (OR: 1.32; 95% CI: 1.05, 1.67; P = 0.017). We found an interaction of PLIN1 × food timing between the 14995A>T variant and timing of lunch eating for total weight loss (P = 0.035). Among AA carriers, eating late was associated with less weight loss (P < 0.001), whereas time of eating did not influence weight loss among TT carriers (P = 0.326).

Conclusions: Variability at the PLIN1 locus is associated with variability in weight loss. Moreover, eating late is related to lower weight-loss effectiveness among carriers of the AA genotype at the PLIN1 14995A>T variant. These results contribute to our ability to implement more precise and successful obesity treatments. The ONTIME study was registered at as NCT02829619.

Keywords: Perilipin; food timing; late eating; obesity; personalized nutrition; weight loss.

Publication types

  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Alleles
  • Body Mass Index
  • Circadian Rhythm
  • Diet Surveys
  • Diet, Reducing
  • Eating
  • Feeding Behavior*
  • Female
  • Gene-Environment Interaction
  • Genotype*
  • Humans
  • Lunch*
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Nutrigenomics
  • Obesity / diet therapy
  • Obesity / genetics*
  • Overweight
  • Perilipin-1 / genetics*
  • Polymorphism, Single Nucleotide*
  • Program Evaluation
  • Weight Loss / genetics*
  • Weight Reduction Programs


  • PLIN1 protein, human
  • Perilipin-1

Associated data