Special Issue "Molecular Nutrition and Metabolism"

A special issue of Metabolites (ISSN 2218-1989).

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (31 July 2019).

Special Issue Editor

Dr. Carolina Simó
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Institute of Food Science Research (CIAL), Spanish National Research Council (CSIC), Madrid 28049, Spain
Interests: nutritional metabolomics; gut microbiota; MS-based technologies; bioinformatics
Special Issues and Collections in MDPI journals

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Current molecular nutrition and metabolism research aims to gain insights into the physiological role of nutrients and food components on health status at molecular and cellular levels. Despite the significant amount of research conducted around this subject, the real impact of most food compounds and their mechanisms of action have not yet been fully elucidated. The precise determination of molecular mechanisms underlying the effect of diet and dietary constituents in physiological functions offers a great potential not only in the maintenance of health but also in disease prevention and treatment. To accelerate the effective development of molecular nutrition and metabolism research, omics technologies (e.g., genomics, transcriptomics, proteomics, and metabolomics), molecular imaging, and bioinformatics, among others, play a crucial role. The topics that will be covered by this Special Issue include, but are not limited to: health-beneficial effects of bioactive food constituents at a molecular level; identifying new molecular targets of dietary exposure; omics-based methodologies to help advance the field of molecular nutrition research; absorption, digestion, microbial/host metabolism and excretion of dietary nutrients/bioactive compounds; meta-omics approaches to studying the interplay of food or food components with the gut microbiota.

Dr. Carolina Simó
Guest Editor

Manuscript Submission Information

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Keywords

  • molecular mechanisms
  • bioavailability, bioaccessibility, bioactivity
  • omics and meta-omics-based technologies
  • microbial/host metabolism

Published Papers (2 papers)

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Research

Open AccessArticle
Application of 1H-NMR Metabolomics for the Discovery of Blood Plasma Biomarkers of a Mediterranean Diet
Metabolites 2019, 9(10), 201; https://doi.org/10.3390/metabo9100201 - 27 Sep 2019
Abstract
The Mediterranean diet (MD) is a dietary pattern well-known for its benefits in disease prevention. Monitoring adherence to the MD could be improved by discovery of novel dietary biomarkers. The MEDiterranean Diet in Northern Ireland (MEDDINI) intervention study monitored the adherence of participants [...] Read more.
The Mediterranean diet (MD) is a dietary pattern well-known for its benefits in disease prevention. Monitoring adherence to the MD could be improved by discovery of novel dietary biomarkers. The MEDiterranean Diet in Northern Ireland (MEDDINI) intervention study monitored the adherence of participants to the MD for up to 12 months. This investigation aimed to profile plasma metabolites, correlating each against the MD score of participants (n = 58). Based on an established 14-point scale MD score, subjects were classified into two groups (“low” and “high”). 1H-Nuclear Magnetic Resonance (1H-NMR) metabolomic analysis found that citric acid was the most significant metabolite (p = 5.99 × 10−4*; q = 0.03), differing between ‘low’ and ‘high’. Furthermore, five additional metabolites significantly differed (p < 0.05; q < 0.35) between the two groups. Discriminatory metabolites included: citric acid, pyruvic acid, betaine, mannose, acetic acid and myo-inositol. Additionally, the top five most influential metabolites in multivariate models were also citric acid, pyruvic acid, betaine, mannose and myo-inositol. Metabolites significantly correlated with the consumption of certain food types. For example, citric acid positively correlated fruit, fruit juice and vegetable constituents of the diet, and negatively correlated with sweet foods alone or when combined with carbonated drinks. Citric acid was the best performing biomarker and this was enhanced by paired ratio with pyruvic acid. The present study demonstrates the utility of metabolomic profiling for effectively assessing adherence to MD and the discovery of novel dietary biomarkers. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Molecular Nutrition and Metabolism)
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Open AccessArticle
The Biosynthetic Pathway of Major Avenanthramides in Oat
Metabolites 2019, 9(8), 163; https://doi.org/10.3390/metabo9080163 - 07 Aug 2019
Abstract
Avenanthramides are a group of N-cinnamoylanthranilic acids, with health-promoting properties mainly found in oat (Avena sativa L.). However, the biosynthetic mechanism for the main three types of avenanthramides (Avn-A, Avn-B and Avn-C) is not completely understood. In the present study, we [...] Read more.
Avenanthramides are a group of N-cinnamoylanthranilic acids, with health-promoting properties mainly found in oat (Avena sativa L.). However, the biosynthetic mechanism for the main three types of avenanthramides (Avn-A, Avn-B and Avn-C) is not completely understood. In the present study, we report molecular identification and functional characterization of three different types of genes from oat encoding 4-coumarate-CoA ligase (4CL), hydroxycinnamoyl-CoA:hydroxyanthranilate N-hydroxycinnamoyl transferase (HHT) and a caffeoyl-CoA O-methyltransferase (CCoAOMT) enzymes, all involved in the biosynthesis of these avenanthramides. In vitro enzymatic assays using the proteins expressed in Escherichia coli showed that oat 4CL could convert p-coumaric acid, caffeic acid and ferulic acid to their CoA thioesters. Oat HHTs were only responsible for the biosynthesis of Avn-A and Avn-C using hydroxyanthranilic acid as an acyl acceptor and p-coumaroyl-CoA and caffeoyl-CoA as an acyl donor, respectively. Avn-B was synthesized by a CCoAOMT enzyme through the methylation of Avn-C. Collectively, these results have elucidated the molecular mechanisms for the biosynthesis of three major avenanthramides in vitro and paved the way for metabolic engineering of the biosynthetic pathway in heterologous systems to produce nutraceutically important compounds and make possible genetic improvement of this nutritional trait in oat through marker-assisted breeding. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Molecular Nutrition and Metabolism)
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