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Blueberry-Based Meals for Obese Patients with Metabolic Syndrome: A Multidisciplinary Metabolomic Pilot Study

Laboratorio di Risonanza Magnetica “Annalaura Segre”, Istituto per i Sistemi Biologici, CNR, via Salaria km 29.300, I-00015 Monterotondo, Italy
Dipartimento di Chimica e Tecnologie del Farmaco, Sapienza Università di Roma, Piazzale Aldo Moro 5, I-00185 Roma, Italy
Sezione di Fisiopatologia Medica, Scienza dell’Alimentazione ed Endocrinologia - Dipartimento di Medicina Sperimentale, Sapienza Università di Roma, Piazzale Aldo Moro 5, I-00185 Roma, Italy
Dipartimento di Scienze e Biotecnologie medico-chirurgiche, Sapienza Università di Roma, Corso della Repubblica 79, 04100 Latina, Italy
Dipartimento di Medicina Interna e Specialità Mediche, Policlinico Umberto 1 Sapienza Università di Roma, viale del Policlinico 151, I-00185, Roma, Italy
Consiglio per la Ricerca in Agricoltura e l’Analisi dell’Economia Agraria (CREA), Ufficio Rapporti Istituzionali e Relazioni Internazionali, Via Po 14, 00198 Roma, Italy
Authors to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Metabolites 2019, 9(7), 138;
Received: 31 May 2019 / Revised: 5 July 2019 / Accepted: 7 July 2019 / Published: 10 July 2019
(This article belongs to the Special Issue NMR-based Metabolomics and Its Applications Volume 2)
A pilot study was carried out on five obese/overweight patients suffering from metabolic syndrome, with the aim to evaluate postprandial effects of high fat/high glycemic load meals enriched by blueberries. Postprandial urine samples were analyzed by 1H-NMR spectroscopy after 2 and 4 h from ingestion to identify potential markers of blueberry intake. Significant decrease of methylamines, acetoacetate, acetone and succinate, known indicators of type 2 diabetes mellitus, were observed after the intake of meals enriched with blueberries. On the other hand, an accumulation of p-hydroxyphenyl-acetic acid and 3-(3’-hydroxyphenyl)-3-hydropropionic acid originating from gut microbial dehydrogenation of proanthocyanidins and procyanidins was detected. Real-time PCR-analysis of mRNAs obtained from mononuclear blood cells showed significant changes in cytokine gene expression levels after meals integrated with blueberries. In particular, the mRNAs expression of interleukin-6 (IL-6) and Transforming Growth Factor-β (TGF-β), pro and anti-inflammation cytokines, respectively, significantly decreased and increased after blueberry supplementation, indicating a positive impact of blueberry ingestion in the reduction of risk of inflammation. The combined analysis of the urine metabolome and clinical markers represents a promising approach in monitoring the metabolic impact of blueberries in persons with metabolic syndrome. View Full-Text
Keywords: 1H-NMR; urine; cytokines; metabolic syndrome; blueberries 1H-NMR; urine; cytokines; metabolic syndrome; blueberries
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Sobolev, A.P.; Ciampa, A.; Ingallina, C.; Mannina, L.; Capitani, D.; Ernesti, I.; Maggi, E.; Businaro, R.; Del Ben, M.; Engel, P.; Giusti, A.M.; Donini, L.M.; Pinto, A. Blueberry-Based Meals for Obese Patients with Metabolic Syndrome: A Multidisciplinary Metabolomic Pilot Study. Metabolites 2019, 9, 138.

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