Studies have demonstrated large within-population heterogeneity in plasma triacylglycerol (TG) response to n-3 PUFA supplementation. The objective of the study was to compare metabolomic and transcriptomic profiles of responders and non-responders of an n-3 PUFA supplementation. Thirty subjects completed a 2-week run-in period followed by a 6-week supplementation with n-3 PUFA (3 g/d). Six subjects did not lower their plasma TG (+9 %) levels (non-responders) and were matched to 6 subjects who lowered TG (−41 %) concentrations (responders) after the n-3 PUFA supplementation. Pre-n-3 PUFA supplementation characteristics did not differ between the non-responders and responders except for plasma glucose concentrations. In responders, changes were observed for plasma hexose concentrations, docosahexaenoic acid, stearoyl-CoA-desaturase-18 ratio, and the extent of saturation of glycerophosphatidylcholine after n-3 PUFA supplementation; however, no change in these parameters was observed in non-responders. Transcriptomic profiles after n-3 PUFA supplementation indicate changes in glycerophospholipid metabolism in both subgroups and sphingolipid metabolism in non-responders. Six key genes in lipid metabolism: fatty acid desaturase 2, phospholipase A2 group IVA, arachidonate 15-lipoxygenase, phosphatidylethanolamine N-methyltransferase, monoglyceride lipase, and glycerol-3-phosphate acyltransferase, were expressed in opposing direction between subgroups. In sum, results highlight key differences in lipid metabolism of non-responders compared to responders after an n-3 PUFA supplementation, which may explain the inter-individual variability in plasma TG response.
Electronic supplementary material
The online version of this article (doi:10.1007/s12263-012-0328-0) contains supplementary material, which is available to authorized users.
Lipidomics; Metabolic pathways; Metabolites; Microarray; Nutrigenomics
Insulin resistance in skeletal muscle is an early phenomenon in the pathogenesis of type 2 diabetes. Muscle is mainly responsible for insulin-stimulated glucose clearance from the bloodstream. Thus, regulation of gene expression in muscle tissue may be involved in the pathogenesis of insulin resistance. The objective was to investigate gene expression and metabolic pathways alterations in skeletal muscle tissue following an euglycemic-hyperinsulinemic clamp in obese insulin-resistant subjects. We carried out a transcriptome comparison of skeletal muscle tissue before and after a 3-h euglycemic-hyperinsulinemic clamp following 8-week supplementation with n-3 polyunsaturated fatty acid (PUFA) (1.8 g/day) with or without a supplement of fish gelatin (FG) (25 % of daily protein intake) in 16 obese insulin-resistant subjects. Results indicate that approximately 5 % (1932) of expressed transcripts were significantly changed after the clamp in both n-3 PUFA and n-3 PUFA + FG supplementation periods. Of these differentially expressed transcripts, 1394 genes associated with enzymes, transcription and translation regulators, transporters, G protein-coupled receptors, cytokines, and ligand-dependent nuclear receptors were modified. Metabolic pathways that were significantly modified included liver X receptor/retinoid X receptors (RXR) activation, vitamin D receptor/RXR activation, interleukin (IL)-8, acute phase response, IL10, triggering receptor expressed on myeloid cells 1, peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor, G-beta/gamma and hepatocyte growth factor and IL6 signaling. Taken together, results suggest that mainly inflammatory and transcription factors are modified following clamp in obese insulin-resistant subjects. Overall, understanding the changes in metabolic pathways due to insulin may be a potential target for the management of insulin resistance.
Diabetes; Obesity; Microarray; Gene expression; Metabolic pathways
The promotion of physical activity among an overweight/obese population is an important challenge for clinical practitioners and researchers. In this regard, completing a questionnaire on cognitions could be a simple and easy strategy to increase levels of physical activity. Thus, the aim of the present study was to test the effect of completing a questionnaire based on the Theory of Planned Behavior (TPB) on the level of physical activity.
Overall, 452 overweight/obese adults were recruited and randomized to the experimental or control group. At baseline, participants completed a questionnaire on cognitions regarding their participation in leisure-time physical activity (experimental condition) versus a questionnaire on fruit and vegetable consumption (control condition). The questionnaires assessed the TPB variables that are beliefs, attitude, norm, perception of control, intention and a few additional variables from other theories. At three-month follow-up, leisure-time physical activity was self-reported by means of a short questionnaire. An analysis of covariance with baseline physical activity level as covariate was used to verify the effect of the intervention.
At follow-up, 373 participants completed the leisure-time physical activity questionnaire. The statistical analysis showed that physical activity participation was greater among participants in the experimental condition than those in the control condition (F(1,370) = 6.85, p = .009, d = 0.20).
Findings indicate that completing a TPB questionnaire has a significant positive impact on subsequent participation in physical activity. Consequently, asking individuals to complete such a questionnaire is a simple, inexpensive and easy strategy to increase the level of physical activity among overweight/obese adults.
Omega-3 fatty acids (FAs) are natural ligands of the peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor-α (PPARα), a nuclear receptor that modulates expression levels of genes involved in lipid metabolism. The L162V polymorphism of the PPARα gene is associated with a deteriorated metabolic profile. We postulate that subjects carrying the PPARα-V162 allele exhibit differences in the expression of PPARα and its target genes after incubation with omega-3 FAs compared with L162 homozygotes. Peripheral blood monocytes from six men carrying the PPARα-V162 allele paired for age and for body mass index with six L162 homozygotes were differentiated into macrophages and activated with eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA), docosahexaenoic acid (DHA), or mixtures of EPA:DHA. Data demonstrates that gene expression levels of PPARα and apolipoprotein AI (APOA1) were significantly lower for carriers of the PPARα-V162 allele compared to L162 homozygotes after the addition of DHA and a mixture of EPA:DHA. Additionally, lipoprotein lipase (LPL) gene expression displayed a tendency to be lower in the PPARα L162V polymorphism subgroup after the addition of a mixture of EPA:DHA. Consequently, individuals carrying the PPARα-V162 allele may demonstrate inferior improvements in their lipid profile due to alterations in gene expression rates in response to omega-3 FA supplementation.
Eicosapentaenoic acid; Docosahexaenoic acid; PPARα; Lipoprotein lipase; Apolipoprotein AI; Triglycerides
Familial history information could be useful in clinical practice. However, little is known about the accuracy of self-reported familial history, particularly self-reported familial history of obesity (FHO).
Two cross-sectional studies were conducted. The aims of study 1 was to compare self-reported and objectively measured weight and height whereas the aims of study 2 were to examine the relationship between the weight and height estimations reported by the study participants and the values provided by their family members as well as the validity of a self-reported measure of FHO. Study 1 was conducted between 2004 and 2006 among 617 subjects and study 2 was conducted in 2006 among 78 participants.
In both studies, weight and height reported by the participants were significantly correlated with their measured values (study 1: r = 0.98 and 0.98; study 2: r = 0.99 and 0.97 respectively; p < 0.0001). Estimates of weight and height for family members provided by the study participants were strongly correlated with values reported by each family member (r = 0.96 and 0.95, respectively; p < 0.0001). Substantial agreement between the FHO reported by the participants and the one obtained by calculating the BMI of each family members was observed (kappa = 0.72; p < 0.0001). Sensitivity (90.5%), specificity (82.6%), positive (82.6%) and negative (90.5%) predictive values of FHO were very good.
A self-reported measure of FHO is valid, suggesting that individuals are able to detect the presence or the absence of obesity in their first-degree family members.
Intention is a key determinant of action. However, there is a gap between intention and behavioural performance that remains to be explained. Therefore, the aim of this study was to identify moderators of the intention-behaviour and perceived behavioural control (PBC)- behaviour relationships for leisure-time physical activity.
This was tested in reference to Ajzen's Theory of Planned Behaviour. A sample of 300 volunteers, 192 women and 108 men, aged 18 to 55, participated in the study. At baseline, the participants completed a self-administrated psychosocial questionnaire assessing Ajzen's theory variables (i.e., intention and perceived behavioural control). The behavioural measure was obtained by mail three months later.
Multiple hierarchical regression analyses indicated that age and annual income moderated the intention-behaviour and PBC-behaviour relationships. However, in the final model predicting behaviour (R2 = .46), only the interaction term of PBC by annual income (β = .24, p = 0.0003) significantly contributed to the prediction of behaviour along with intention (β = .49, p = 0.0009) and past behaviour (β = .44, p < 0.0001).
Physical activity promotion programs would benefit not only from focusing on increasing the intention of low intenders, but also from targeting factors that moderate the perceived behavioural control-behaviour relationships.
Familial history of obesity (FHO) and certain dietary habits are risk factors for obesity. The objectives of this cross-sectional study were 1) to derive dietary patterns using factor analysis in a population of men and women with and without FHO; 2) to compare mean factor scores for each dietary pattern between individuals with and without FHO; and 3) to examine the association between these patterns and anthropometric, lifestyle and sociodemographic variables.
A total of 197 women and 129 men with a body mass index <30 kg/m2 were recruited. A positive FHO (FHO+) was defined as having at least one obese first-degree relative and a negative FHO (FHO-) as no obese first-degree relative. Dietary data were collected from a food frequency questionnaire. Factor analysis was performed to derive dietary patterns. Mean factor scores were compared using general linear model among men and women according to FHO. Regression analyses were performed to study the relationship between anthropometric, lifestyle and sociodemographic variables, and each dietary pattern.
Two dietary patterns were identified in both men and women : the Western pattern characterized by a higher consumption of red meats, poultry, processed meats, refined grains as well as desserts, and the Prudent pattern characterized by greater intakes of vegetables, fruits, non-hydrogenated fat, and fish and seafood. Similar Western and Prudent factor scores were observed in individual with and without FHO. In men with FHO+, the Western pattern is negatively associated with age and positively associated with physical activity, smoking, and personal income. In women with FHO-, the Prudent pattern is negatively associated with BMI and smoking and these pattern is positively associated with age and physical activity.
Two dietary patterns have been identified among men and women with and without FHO. Although that FHO does not seem to influence the adherence to dietary patterns, results of this study suggest that anthropometric, lifestyle and sociodemographic variables associated with dietary patterns differ according to FHO and gender.
Background. Maternal obesity, excess weight gain and overnutrition during pregnancy increase risks of obesity, type 2 diabetes mellitus, and cardiovascular disease in the offspring. Maternal biliopancreatic diversion is an effective treatment for severe obesity and is beneficial for offspring born after maternal surgery (AMS). These offspring exhibit lower severe obesity prevalence and improved cardiometabolic risk factors including inflammatory marker compared to siblings born before maternal surgery (BMS). Objective. To assess relationships between maternal bariatric surgery and the methylation/expression of genes involved in the immune and inflammatory pathways. Methods. A differential gene methylation analysis was conducted in a sibling cohort of 25 BMS and 25 AMS offspring from 20 mothers. Following differential gene expression analysis (23 BMS and 23 AMS), pathway analysis was conducted. Correlations between gene methylation/expression and circulating inflammatory markers were computed. Results. Five immune and inflammatory pathways with significant overrepresentation of both differential gene methylation and expression were identified. In the IL-8 pathway, gene methylation correlated with both gene expression and plasma C-reactive protein levels. Conclusion. These results suggest that improvements in cardiometabolic risk markers in AMS compared to BMS offspring may be mediated through differential methylation of genes involved in immune and inflammatory pathways.
Diet regulates gene expression profiles by several mechanisms. The objective of this study was to examine gene expression in relation with dietary patterns.
Two hundred and fifty four participants from the greater Quebec City metropolitan area were recruited. Two hundred and ten participants completed the study protocol. Dietary patterns were derived from a food frequency questionnaire (FFQ) by factor analysis. For 30 participants (in fasting state), RNA was extracted from peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMCs) and expression levels of 47,231 mRNA transcripts were assessed using the Illumina Human-6 v3 Expression BeadChips®. Microarray data was pre-processed with Flexarray software and analysed with Ingenuity Pathway Analysis (IPA).
Two dietary patterns were identified. The Prudent dietary pattern was characterised by high intakes of vegetables, fruits, whole grain products and low intakes of refined grain products and the Western dietary pattern, by high intakes of refined grain products, desserts, sweets and processed meats. When individuals with high scores for the Prudent dietary pattern where compared to individuals with low scores, 2,083 transcripts were differentially expressed in men, 1,136 transcripts in women and 59 transcripts were overlapping in men and women. For the Western dietary pattern, 1,021 transcripts were differentially expressed in men with high versus low scores, 1,163 transcripts in women and 23 transcripts were overlapping in men and women. IPA reveals that genes differentially expressed for both patterns were present in networks related to the immune and/or inflammatory response, cancer and cardiovascular diseases.
Gene expression profiles were different according to dietary patterns, which probably modulate the risk of chronic diseases.
Dietary patterns; Western dietary pattern; Prudent dietary pattern; Gene expression; Transcriptomics
Eicosapentaenoic and docosahexaenoic acids have been reported to have a variety of beneficial effects on cardiovascular disease risk factors. However, a large inter-individual variability in the plasma lipid response to an omega-3 (n-3) polyunsaturated fatty acid (PUFA) supplementation is observed in different studies. Genetic variations may influence plasma lipid responsiveness. The aim of the present study was to examine the effects of a supplementation with n-3 PUFA on the plasma lipid profile in relation to the presence of single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in the fatty acid desaturase (FADS) gene cluster. A total of 208 subjects from Quebec City area were supplemented with 3 g/day of n-3 PUFA, during six weeks. In a statistical model including the effect of the genotype, the supplementation and the genotype by supplementation interaction, SNP rs174546 was significantly associated (p = 0.02) with plasma triglyceride (TG) levels, pre- and post-supplementation. The n-3 supplementation had an independent effect on plasma TG levels and no significant genotype by supplementation interaction effects were observed. In summary, our data support the notion that the FADS gene cluster is a major determinant of plasma TG levels. SNP rs174546 may be an important SNP associated with plasma TG levels and FADS1 gene expression independently of a nutritional intervention with n-3 PUFA.
triacylglycerol; metabolic pathways; lipids; genotypes; FADS gene cluster; polyunsaturated fatty acid omega-3
Omega-3 fatty acids (FAs) have the potential to regulate gene
expression via the peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor α (PPARα);
therefore, genetic variations in this gene may
transcriptional activity on target genes. It is hypothesized that
the transcriptional activity by wild-type L162-PPARα is enhanced
to a greater extent than the mutated variant (V162-PPARα) in the
presence of eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA), docosahexaenoic acid
(DHA) or a mixture of EPA:DHA. To examine the functional
difference of the two allelic variants on receptor activity,
transient co-transfections were performed in human hepatoma HepG2
cells activated with EPA, DHA and EPA:DHA mixtures. Results
indicate that the addition of EPA or DHA demonstrate potential to
increase the transcriptional activity by PPARα with respect to
basal level in both variants. Yet, the EPA:DHA mixtures enhanced
the transcriptional activity to a greater extent than individual
FAs indicating possible additive effects of EPA and DHA.
Additionally, the V162 allelic form of PPARα demonstrated
consistently lower transcriptional activation when incubated with
EPA, DHA or EPA:DHA mixtures than, the wild-type variant. In
conclusion, both allelic variants of the PPARα L162V are activated
by omega-3 FAs; however, the V162 allelic form displays a lower
transcriptional activity than the wild-type variant.
A large body of evidence suggests that the environment plays an important role in the development of obesity. The hormone-sensitive lipase (encoded by the LIPE gene) is an intracellular enzyme that mobilises fat stores in a hormone-stimulated manner. The aim of the present study was to determine the effects of the LIPE C-60G polymorphism on body fat and plasma lipid and lipoprotein concentrations, and to test for its interaction with physical activity. The LIPE C-60G polymorphism was genotyped in 862 subjects from the Quebec Family Study. Body mass index (BMI), fat mass, percentage body fat, abdominal fat areas assessed by computed tomography, and detailed fasting plasma lipid and lipoprotein profiles were measured. Levels of physical activity were estimated using a three-day diary, and a moderate to strenuous physical activity score was retained for this study. The main effects of the LIPE C-60G polymorphism, physical activity and their interaction were determined by regression analyses separately in men and women using the MIXED model procedure. In men, we observed significant gene-physical activity interactions for BMI (p = 0.006), fat mass (p = 0.04), abdominal visceral fat area (p = 0.005) and plasma cholesterol (C) high-density lipoprotein cholesterol (HDL-C) ratio (p = 0.003). A high level of physical activity was associated with reduced adiposity and a lower plasma-C/HDL-C ratio, but only in non-carriers of the genetic variant (G-60 allele). In women, no evidence of a gene by physical activity interaction was observed, except for subcutaneous abdominal fat (p = 0.05). These results suggest that the associations between physical activity and body fat and plasma lipoprotein/lipid concentrations in men are dependent on the LIPE C-60G polymorphism, and highlight the importance of taking into account the role of gene-physical activity interactions in candidate gene studies of obesity and obesity-related traits.
hormone-sensitive lipase; body fat; plasma lipid and lipoprotein levels; gene-environment interaction
Asthma and obesity are frequently associated, and obesity has been considered a factor contributing to both an increase in severity of asthma and to its development. The present document summarizes the proceedings of a symposium held in Montreal, Quebec, on November 2, 2006, under the auspices of the Réseau en santé respiratoire du Fonds de la recherche en santé du Québec in collaboration with the McGill University – Strauss Severe Asthma Program, Université Laval (Quebec City) and Université de Montréal. It includes an overview of the various aspects of the relationships between asthma and obesity with regard to animal models; genetic, hormonal and physiological determinants; influence of comorbidities (eg, sleep apnea syndrome); epidemiology; clinical and psychological features; and management of asthma in the obese population.
Airway inflammation; Asthma; Body mass index; Lung function; Obesity; Sleep apnea syndrome
Intakes of omega-3 (n-3) fatty acids (FA) are associated with several health benefits. The aim of this study was to verify whether intakes of n-3 FA estimated from a food frequency questionnaire (FFQ) correlate with n-3 FA levels measured in plasma phospholipids (PL).
The study sample consisted of 200 French-Canadians men and women aged between 18 to 55 years. Dietary data were collected using a validated FFQ. Fasting blood samples were collected and the plasma PL FA profile was measured by gas chromatography.
Low intakes of n-3 long-chain FA together with low percentages of n-3 long-chain FA in plasma PL were found in French-Canadian population. Daily intakes of eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA), docosapentaenoic acid (DPA) and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) were similar between men and women. Yet, alpha-linolenic acid (ALA) and total n-3 FA intakes were significantly higher in men compared to women (ALA: 2.28 g and 1.69 g, p < 0.0001, total n-3 FA: 2.57 g and 1.99 g, p < 0.0001; respectively). In plasma PL, DPA and DHA percentages were significantly different between men and women (DPA: 1.03% and 0.88%, p < 0.0001, DHA: 3.00% and 3.43%, p = 0.0005; respectively). Moreover, DHA (men: r = 0.52, p < 0.0001; women: r = 0.57, p < 0.0001) and total n-3 FA (men: r = 0.47, p < 0.0001; women: r = 0.52, p < 0.0001) intakes were positively correlated to their respective plasma PL FA levels. In women, EPA (r = 0.44, p < 0.0001) and DPA (r = 0.23, p = 0.02) intakes were also correlated respectively with EPA and DPA plasma PL FA percentages.
Estimated n-3 long-chain FA intake among this young and well-educated French-Canadian population is lower than the recommendations. Further, FFQ data is comparable to plasma PL results to estimate DHA and total n-3 FA status in healthy individuals as well as to evaluate the EPA and DPA status in women. Overall, this FFQ could be used as a simple, low-cost tool in future studies to rank n-3 FA status of individuals.
Food frequency questionnaire; Plasma phospholipids; n-3 PUFA; Biomarker; Gas chromatography
Epigenetic mechanisms may be involved in the regulation of genes found to be differentially expressed in the visceral adipose tissue (VAT) of severely obese subjects with (MetS+) versus without (MetS-) metabolic syndrome (MetS). Long interspersed nuclear element 1 (LINE-1) elements DNA methylation levels (%meth) in blood, a marker of global DNA methylation, have recently been associated with fasting glucose, blood lipids, heart diseases and stroke.
To test whether LINE-1%meth levels in VAT are associated with MetS phenotypes and whether they can predict MetS risk in severely obese individuals.
DNA was extracted from VAT of 34 men (MetS-: n = 14, MetS+: n = 20) and 152 premenopausal women (MetS-: n = 84; MetS+: n = 68) undergoing biliopancreatic diversion for the treatment of obesity. LINE-1%meth levels were assessed by pyrosequencing of sodium bisulfite-treated DNA.
The mean LINE-1%meth in VAT was of 75.8% (SD = 3.0%). Multiple linear regression analyses revealed that LINE-1%meth was negatively associated with fasting glucose levels (β = -0.04; P = 0.03), diastolic blood pressure (β = -0.65; P = 0.03) and MetS status (β = -0.04; P = 0.004) after adjustments for the effects of age, sex, waist circumference (except for MetS status) and smoking. While dividing subjects into quartiles based on their LINE-1%meth (Q1 to Q4: lower %meth to higher %meth levels), greater risk were observed in the first (Q1: odds ratio (OR) = 4.37, P = 0.004) and the second (Q2: OR = 4.76, P = 0.002) quartiles compared to Q4 (1.00) when adjusting for age, sex and smoking.
These results suggest that lower global DNA methylation, assessed by LINE-1 repetitive elements methylation analysis, would be associated with a greater risk for MetS in the presence of obesity.
Blood pressure; Epigenetics; Fasting glucose; Global DNA methylation; LINE-1; Metabolic syndrome; Severe obesity; Visceral adipose tissue