Publications by authors named "Marjan J Van Erk"

19 Publications

  • Page 1 of 1

Multi-parameter comparison of a standardized mixed meal tolerance test in healthy and type 2 diabetic subjects: the PhenFlex challenge.

Genes Nutr 2017 29;12:21. Epub 2017 Aug 29.

TNO, Netherlands Institute for Applied Scientific Research, Zeist, The Netherlands.

Background: A key feature of metabolic health is the ability to adapt upon dietary perturbations. Recently, it was shown that metabolic challenge tests in combination with the new generation biomarkers allow the simultaneous quantification of major metabolic health processes. Currently, applied challenge tests are largely non-standardized. A systematic review defined an optimal nutritional challenge test, the "PhenFlex test" (PFT). This study aimed to prove that PFT modulates all relevant processes governing metabolic health thereby allowing to distinguish subjects with different metabolic health status. Therefore, 20 healthy and 20 type 2 diabetic (T2D) male subjects were challenged both by PFT and oral glucose tolerance test (OGTT). During the 8-h response time course, 132 parameters were quantified that report on 26 metabolic processes distributed over 7 organs (gut, liver, adipose, pancreas, vasculature, muscle, kidney) and systemic stress.

Results: In healthy subjects, 110 of the 132 parameters showed a time course response. Patients with T2D showed 18 parameters to be significantly different after overnight fasting compared to healthy subjects, while 58 parameters were different in the post-challenge time course after the PFT. This demonstrates the added value of PFT in distinguishing subjects with different health status. The OGTT and PFT response was highly comparable for glucose metabolism as identical amounts of glucose were present in both challenge tests. Yet the PFT reports on additional processes, including vasculature, systemic stress, and metabolic flexibility.

Conclusion: The PFT enables the quantification of all relevant metabolic processes involved in maintaining or regaining homeostasis of metabolic health. Studying both healthy subjects and subjects with impaired metabolic health showed that the PFT revealed new processes laying underneath health. This study provides the first evidence towards adopting the PFT as gold standard in nutrition research.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/s12263-017-0570-6DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5576306PMC
August 2017

Metabolomic biomarkers for personalised glucose lowering drugs treatment in type 2 diabetes.

Metabolomics 2016 6;12:27. Epub 2016 Jan 6.

Julius Centre for Health Sciences and Primary Care, University Medical Centre Utrecht, Str. 6.131, PO Box 85500, 3508 GA Utrecht, The Netherlands.

We aimed to identify metabolites to predict patients' response to glucose lowering treatment during the first 5 years after detection of type 2 diabetes. Metabolites were measured by GC-MS in baseline samples from 346 screen-detected type 2 diabetes patients in the ADDITION-NL study. The response to treatment with metformin and/or sulphonylurea (SU) was analysed to identify metabolites predictive of 5 year HbA1c change by multiple regression analysis. Baseline glucose and 1,5 anhydro-glucitol were associated with HbA decrease in all medication groups. In patients on SU no other metabolite was associated with HbA1c decrease. A larger set of metabolites was associated with HbA1c change in the metformin and the combination therapy (metformin + SU) groups. These metabolites included metabolites related to liver metabolism, such as 2-hydroxybutanoic acid, 3-hydroxybutanoic acid, 2-hydroxypiperidine and 4-oxoproline). Metabolites involved in oxidative stress and insulin resistance were higher when the HbA1c decrease was larger in the metformin/sulphonylurea group. The associations between baseline metabolites and responsiveness to medication are in line with its mode of action. If these results could be replicated in other populations, the most promising predictive candidates might be tested to assess whether they could enhance personalised treatment.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s11306-015-0930-4DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4703625PMC
January 2016

Quantifying phenotypic flexibility as the response to a high-fat challenge test in different states of metabolic health.

FASEB J 2015 Nov 21;29(11):4600-13. Epub 2015 Jul 21.

Microbiology Systems and Biology Group, Netherlands Organisation for Applied Scientific Research (TNO), Zeist, The Netherlands

Metabolism maintains homeostasis at chronic hypercaloric conditions, activating postprandial response mechanisms, which come at the cost of adaptation processes such as energy storage, eventually with negative health consequences. This study quantified the metabolic adaptation capacity by studying challenge response curves. After a high-fat challenge, the 8 h response curves of 61 biomarkers related to adipose tissue mass and function, systemic stress, metabolic flexibility, vascular health, and glucose metabolism was compared between 3 metabolic health stages: 10 healthy men, before and after 4 wk of high-fat, high-calorie diet (1300 kcal/d extra), and 9 men with metabolic syndrome (MetS). The MetS subjects had increased fasting concentrations of biomarkers representing the 3 core processes, glucose, TG, and inflammation control, and the challenge response curves of most biomarkers were altered. After the 4 wk hypercaloric dietary intervention, these 3 processes were not changed, as compared with the preintervention state in the healthy subjects, whereas the challenge response curves of almost all endocrine, metabolic, and inflammatory processes regulating these core processes were altered, demonstrating major molecular physiologic efforts to maintain homeostasis. This study thus demonstrates that change in challenge response is a more sensitive biomarker of metabolic resilience than are changes in fasting concentrations.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1096/fj.14-269852DOI Listing
November 2015

Plasma metabolomics and proteomics profiling after a postprandial challenge reveal subtle diet effects on human metabolic status.

Metabolomics 2012 Apr 28;8(2):347-359. Epub 2011 May 28.

We introduce the metabolomics and proteomics based Postprandial Challenge Test (PCT) to quantify the postprandial response of multiple metabolic processes in humans in a standardized manner. The PCT comprised consumption of a standardized 500 ml dairy shake containing respectively 59, 30 and 12 energy percent lipids, carbohydrates and protein. During a 6 h time course after PCT 145 plasma metabolites, 79 proteins and 7 clinical chemistry parameters were quantified. Multiple processes related to metabolism, oxidation and inflammation reacted to the PCT, as demonstrated by changes of 106 metabolites, 31 proteins and 5 clinical chemistry parameters. The PCT was applied in a dietary intervention study to evaluate if the PCT would reveal additional metabolic changes compared to non-perturbed conditions. The study consisted of a 5-week intervention with a supplement mix of anti-inflammatory compounds in a crossover design with 36 overweight subjects. Of the 231 quantified parameters, 31 had different responses over time between treated and control groups, revealing differences in amino acid metabolism, oxidative stress, inflammation and endocrine metabolism. The results showed that the acute, short term metabolic responses to the PCT were different in subjects on the supplement mix compared to the controls. The PCT provided additional metabolic changes related to the dietary intervention not observed in non-perturbed conditions. Thus, a metabolomics based quantification of a standardized perturbation of metabolic homeostasis is more informative on metabolic status and subtle health effects induced by (dietary) interventions than quantification of the homeostatic situation. ELECTRONIC SUPPLEMENTARY MATERIAL: The online version of this article (doi:10.1007/s11306-011-0320-5) contains supplementary material, which is available to authorized users.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s11306-011-0320-5DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3291817PMC
April 2012

Moderate alcohol consumption alters both leucocyte gene expression profiles and circulating proteins related to immune response and lipid metabolism in men.

Br J Nutr 2012 Aug 6;108(4):620-7. Epub 2011 Dec 6.

Earth, Environment and Life Sciences, AJ Zeist, The Netherlands.

Moderate alcohol consumption has various effects on immune and inflammatory processes, which could accumulatively modulate chronic disease risk. So far, no comprehensive, integrative profiling has been performed to investigate the effects of longer-term alcohol consumption. Therefore, we studied the effects of alcohol consumption on gene expression patterns using large-scale profiling of whole-genome transcriptomics in blood cells and on a number of proteins in blood. In a randomised, open-label, cross-over trial, twenty-four young, normal-weight men consumed 100 ml vodka (30 g alcohol) with 200 ml orange juice or only orange juice daily during dinner for 4 weeks. After each period, blood was sampled for measuring gene expression and selected proteins. Pathway analysis of 345 down-regulated and 455 up-regulated genes revealed effects of alcohol consumption on various signalling responses, immune processes and lipid metabolism. Among the signalling processes, the most prominently changed was glucocorticoid receptor signalling. A network on immune response showed a down-regulated NF-κB gene expression together with increased plasma adiponectin and decreased pro-inflammatory IL-1 receptor antagonist and IL-18, and acute-phase proteins ferritin and α1-antitrypsin concentrations (all P < 0.05) after alcohol consumption. Furthermore, a network of gene expression changes related to lipid metabolism was observed, with a central role for PPARα which was supported by increased HDL-cholesterol and several apo concentrations (all P < 0.05) after alcohol consumption. In conclusion, an integrated approach of profiling both genes and proteins in blood showed that 4 weeks of moderate alcohol consumption altered immune responses and lipid metabolism.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1017/S0007114511005988DOI Listing
August 2012

Perfluoroalkyl sulfonates cause alkyl chain length-dependent hepatic steatosis and hypolipidemia mainly by impairing lipoprotein production in APOE*3-Leiden CETP mice.

Toxicol Sci 2011 Sep 24;123(1):290-303. Epub 2011 Jun 24.

Department of Human Genetics, Leiden University Medical Center, 2300 RC Leiden, The Netherlands.

Perfluorobutane sulfonate (PFBS), perfluorohexane sulfonate (PFHxS), and perfluorooctane sulfonate (PFOS) are stable perfluoroalkyl sulfonate (PFAS) surfactants, and PFHxS and PFOS are frequently detected in human biomonitoring studies. Some epidemiological studies have shown modest positive correlations of serum PFOS with non-high-density lipoprotein (HDL)-cholesterol (C). This study investigated the mechanism underlying the effect of PFAS surfactants on lipoprotein metabolism. APOE*3-Leiden.CETP mice were fed a Western-type diet with PFBS, PFHxS, or PFOS (30, 6, and 3 mg/kg/day, respectively) for 4-6 weeks. Whereas PFBS modestly reduced only plasma triglycerides (TG), PFHxS and PFOS markedly reduced TG, non-HDL-C, and HDL-C. The decrease in very low-density lipoprotein (VLDL) was caused by enhanced lipoprotein lipase-mediated VLDL-TG clearance and by decreased production of VLDL-TG and VLDL-apolipoprotein B. Reduced HDL production, related to decreased apolipoprotein AI synthesis, resulted in decreased HDL. PFHxS and PFOS increased liver weight and hepatic TG content. Hepatic gene expression profiling data indicated that these effects were the combined result of peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor alpha and pregnane X receptor activation. In conclusion, the potency of PFAS to affect lipoprotein metabolism increased with increasing alkyl chain length. PFHxS and PFOS reduce plasma TG and total cholesterol mainly by impairing lipoprotein production, implying that the reported positive correlations of serum PFOS and non-HDL-C are associative rather than causal.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/toxsci/kfr142DOI Listing
September 2011

Anti-inflammatory, anti-proliferative and anti-atherosclerotic effects of quercetin in human in vitro and in vivo models.

Atherosclerosis 2011 Sep 5;218(1):44-52. Epub 2011 May 5.

The Netherlands Organization for Applied Scientific Research (TNO), Metabolic Health Research, The Netherlands.

Objective: Polyphenols such as quercetin may exert several beneficial effects, including those resulting from anti-inflammatory activities, but their impact on cardiovascular health is debated. We investigated the effect of quercetin on cardiovascular risk markers including human C-reactive protein (CRP) and on atherosclerosis using transgenic humanized models of cardiovascular disease.

Methods: After evaluating its anti-oxidative and anti-inflammatory effects in cultured human cells, quercetin (0.1%, w/w in diet) was given to human CRP transgenic mice, a humanized inflammation model, and ApoE*3Leiden transgenic mice, a humanized atherosclerosis model. Sodium salicylate was used as an anti-inflammatory reference.

Results: In cultured human endothelial cells, quercetin protected against H(2)O(2)-induced lipid peroxidation and reduced the cytokine-induced cell-surface expression of VCAM-1 and E-selectin. Quercetin also reduced the transcriptional activity of NFκB in human hepatocytes. In human CRP transgenic mice (quercetin plasma concentration: 12.9 ± 1.3 μM), quercetin quenched IL1β-induced CRP expression, as did sodium salicylate. In ApoE*3Leiden mice, quercetin (plasma concentration: 19.3 ± 8.3 μM) significantly attenuated atherosclerosis by 40% (sodium salicylate by 86%). Quercetin did not affect atherogenic plasma lipids or lipoproteins but it significantly lowered the circulating inflammatory risk factors SAA and fibrinogen. Combined histological and microarray analysis of aortas revealed that quercetin affected vascular cell proliferation thereby reducing atherosclerotic lesion growth. Quercetin also reduced the gene expression of specific factors implicated in local vascular inflammation including IL-1R, Ccl8, IKK, and STAT3.

Conclusion: Quercetin reduces the expression of human CRP and cardiovascular risk factors (SAA, fibrinogen) in mice in vivo. These systemic effects together with local anti-proliferative and anti-inflammatory effects in the aorta may contribute to the attenuation of atherosclerosis.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.atherosclerosis.2011.04.023DOI Listing
September 2011

Fenofibrate increases very low density lipoprotein triglyceride production despite reducing plasma triglyceride levels in APOE*3-Leiden.CETP mice.

J Biol Chem 2010 Aug 25;285(33):25168-75. Epub 2010 May 25.

Department of Human Genetics, Leiden University Medical Center, 2300 RC Leiden, The Netherlands.

The peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor alpha (PPARalpha) activator fenofibrate efficiently decreases plasma triglycerides (TG), which is generally attributed to enhanced very low density lipoprotein (VLDL)-TG clearance and decreased VLDL-TG production. However, because data on the effect of fenofibrate on VLDL production are controversial, we aimed to investigate in (more) detail the mechanism underlying the TG-lowering effect by studying VLDL-TG production and clearance using APOE*3-Leiden.CETP mice, a unique mouse model for human-like lipoprotein metabolism. Male mice were fed a Western-type diet for 4 weeks, followed by the same diet without or with fenofibrate (30 mg/kg bodyweight/day) for 4 weeks. Fenofibrate strongly lowered plasma cholesterol (-38%) and TG (-60%) caused by reduction of VLDL. Fenofibrate markedly accelerated VLDL-TG clearance, as judged from a reduced plasma half-life of glycerol tri[(3)H]oleate-labeled VLDL-like emulsion particles (-68%). This was associated with an increased post-heparin lipoprotein lipase (LPL) activity (+110%) and an increased uptake of VLDL-derived fatty acids by skeletal muscle, white adipose tissue, and liver. Concomitantly, fenofibrate markedly increased the VLDL-TG production rate (+73%) but not the VLDL-apolipoprotein B (apoB) production rate. Kinetic studies using [(3)H]palmitic acid showed that fenofibrate increased VLDL-TG production by equally increasing incorporation of re-esterified plasma fatty acids and liver TG into VLDL, which was supported by hepatic gene expression profiling data. We conclude that fenofibrate decreases plasma TG by enhancing LPL-mediated VLDL-TG clearance, which results in a compensatory increase in VLDL-TG production by the liver.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1074/jbc.M110.123992DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2919079PMC
August 2010

An antiinflammatory dietary mix modulates inflammation and oxidative and metabolic stress in overweight men: a nutrigenomics approach.

Am J Clin Nutr 2010 Apr 24;91(4):1044-59. Epub 2010 Feb 24.

TNO Quality of Life, Business Unit Biosciences, Zeist, The Netherlands.

Background: Low-grade chronic inflammation in overweight subjects is thought to play an important role in disease development.

Objective: It was hypothesized that specific dietary components are able to reduce low-grade inflammation as well as metabolic and oxidative stress.

Design: Dietary products [resveratrol, green tea extract, alpha-tocopherol, vitamin C, n-3 (omega-3) polyunsaturated fatty acids, and tomato extract] selected for their evidence-based antiinflammatory properties were combined and given as supplements to 36 healthy overweight men with mildly elevated plasma C-reactive protein concentrations in a double-blind, placebo-controlled, crossover study with treatment periods of 5 wk. Inflammatory and oxidative stress defense markers were quantified in plasma and urine. Furthermore, 120 plasma proteins, 274 plasma metabolites (lipids, free fatty acids, and polar compounds), and the transcriptomes of peripheral blood mononuclear cells and adipose tissue were quantified.

Results: Plasma adiponectin concentrations increased by 7%, whereas C-reactive protein (principal inflammation marker) was unchanged. However, a multitude of subtle changes were detected by an integrated analysis of the "omics" data, which indicated modulated inflammation of adipose tissue, improved endothelial function, affected oxidative stress, and increased liver fatty acid oxidation.

Conclusion: An intervention with selected dietary products affected inflammatory processes, oxidative stress, and metabolism in humans, as shown by large-scale profiling of genes, proteins, and metabolites in plasma, urine, and adipose tissue. This trial was registered at clinical trials.gov as NCT00655798.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3945/ajcn.2009.28822DOI Listing
April 2010

Insight in modulation of inflammation in response to diclofenac intervention: a human intervention study.

BMC Med Genomics 2010 Feb 23;3. Epub 2010 Feb 23.

TNO Quality of Life, PO Box 360, 3700 AJ Zeist, the Netherlands.

Background: Chronic systemic low-grade inflammation in obese subjects is associated with health complications including cardiovascular diseases, insulin resistance and diabetes. Reducing inflammatory responses may reduce these risks. However, available markers of inflammatory status inadequately describe the complexity of metabolic responses to mild anti-inflammatory therapy.

Methods: To address this limitation, we used an integrative omics approach to characterize modulation of inflammation in overweight men during an intervention with the non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug diclofenac. Measured parameters included 80 plasma proteins, >300 plasma metabolites (lipids, free fatty acids, oxylipids and polar compounds) and an array of peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMC) gene expression products. These measures were submitted to multivariate and correlation analysis and were used for construction of biological response networks.

Results: A panel of genes, proteins and metabolites, including PGE2 and TNF-alpha, were identified that describe a diclofenac-response network (68 genes in PBMC, 1 plasma protein and 4 plasma metabolites). Novel candidate markers of inflammatory modulation included PBMC expression of annexin A1 and caspase 8, and the arachidonic acid metabolite 5,6-DHET.

Conclusion: In this study the integrated analysis of a wide range of parameters allowed the development of a network of markers responding to inflammatory modulation, thereby providing insight into the complex process of inflammation and ways to assess changes in inflammatory status associated with obesity.

Trial Registration: The study is registered as NCT00221052 in clinicaltrials.gov database.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/1755-8794-3-5DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2837611PMC
February 2010

Genome-wide mRNA expression analysis of hepatic adaptation to high-fat diets reveals switch from an inflammatory to steatotic transcriptional program.

PLoS One 2009 Aug 14;4(8):e6646. Epub 2009 Aug 14.

Nutrigenomics Consortium, Top Institute Food and Nutrition, Wageningen, The Netherlands.

Background: Excessive exposure to dietary fats is an important factor in the initiation of obesity and metabolic syndrome associated pathologies. The cellular processes associated with the onset and progression of diet-induced metabolic syndrome are insufficiently understood.

Principal Findings: To identify the mechanisms underlying the pathological changes associated with short and long-term exposure to excess dietary fat, hepatic gene expression of ApoE3Leiden mice fed chow and two types of high-fat (HF) diets was monitored using microarrays during a 16-week period. A functional characterization of 1663 HF-responsive genes reveals perturbations in lipid, cholesterol and oxidative metabolism, immune and inflammatory responses and stress-related pathways. The major changes in gene expression take place during the early (day 3) and late (week 12) phases of HF feeding. This is also associated with characteristic opposite regulation of many HF-affected pathways between these two phases. The most prominent switch occurs in the expression of inflammatory/immune pathways (early activation, late repression) and lipogenic/adipogenic pathways (early repression, late activation). Transcriptional network analysis identifies NF-kappaB, NEMO, Akt, PPARgamma and SREBP1 as the key controllers of these processes and suggests that direct regulatory interactions between these factors may govern the transition from early (stressed, inflammatory) to late (pathological, steatotic) hepatic adaptation to HF feeding. This transition observed by hepatic gene expression analysis is confirmed by expression of inflammatory proteins in plasma and the late increase in hepatic triglyceride content. In addition, the genes most predictive of fat accumulation in liver during 16-week high-fat feeding period are uncovered by regression analysis of hepatic gene expression and triglyceride levels.

Conclusions: The transition from an inflammatory to a steatotic transcriptional program, possibly driven by the reciprocal activation of NF-kappaB and PPARgamma regulators, emerges as the principal signature of the hepatic adaptation to excess dietary fat. These findings may be of essential interest for devising new strategies aiming to prevent the progression of high-fat diet induced pathologies.
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http://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0006646PLOS
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2722023PMC
August 2009

Effect of body fat distribution on the transcription response to dietary fat interventions.

Genes Nutr 2009 Jun 30;4(2):143-9. Epub 2009 Apr 30.

TNO Quality of Life, Business Unit Biosciences, P.O. Box 360, 3700 AJ, Zeist, The Netherlands,

Combination of decreased energy expenditure and increased food intake results in fat accumulation either in the abdominal site (upper body obesity, UBO) or on the hips (lower body obesity, LBO). In this study, we used microarray gene expression profiling of adipose tissue biopsies to investigate the effect of body fat distribution on the physiological response to two dietary fat interventions. Mildly obese UBO and LBO male subjects (n = 12, waist-to-hip ratio range 0.93-1.12) were subjected to consumption of diets containing predominantly either long-chain fatty acids (PUFA) or medium-chain fatty acids (MCT). The results revealed (1) a large variation in transcription response to MCT and PUFA diets between UBO and LBO subjects, (2) higher sensitivity of UBO subjects to MCT/PUFA dietary intervention and (3) the upregulation of immune and apoptotic pathways and downregulation of metabolic pathways (oxidative, lipid, carbohydrate and amino acid metabolism) in UBO subjects when consuming MCT compared with PUFA diet. In conclusion, we report that despite the recommendation of MCT-based diet for improving obesity phenotype, this diet may have adverse effect on inflammatory and metabolic status of UBO subjects. The body fat distribution is, therefore, an important parameter to consider when providing personalized dietary recommendation.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s12263-009-0122-9DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2690730PMC
June 2009

Metabolic profiling of the response to an oral glucose tolerance test detects subtle metabolic changes.

PLoS One 2009 26;4(2):e4525. Epub 2009 Feb 26.

Department Quality of Life, TNO, Zeist, the Netherlands.

Background: The prevalence of overweight is increasing globally and has become a serious health problem. Low-grade chronic inflammation in overweight subjects is thought to play an important role in disease development. Novel tools to understand these processes are needed. Metabolic profiling is one such tool that can provide novel insights into the impact of treatments on metabolism.

Methodology: To study the metabolic changes induced by a mild anti-inflammatory drug intervention, plasma metabolic profiling was applied in overweight human volunteers with elevated levels of the inflammatory plasma marker C-reactive protein. Liquid and gas chromatography mass spectrometric methods were used to detect high and low abundant plasma metabolites both in fasted conditions and during an oral glucose tolerance test. This is based on the concept that the resilience of the system can be assessed after perturbing a homeostatic situation.

Conclusions: Metabolic changes were subtle and were only detected using metabolic profiling in combination with an oral glucose tolerance test. The repeated measurements during the oral glucose tolerance test increased statistical power, but the metabolic perturbation also revealed metabolites that respond differentially to the oral glucose tolerance test. Specifically, multiple metabolic intermediates of the glutathione synthesis pathway showed time-dependent suppression in response to the glucose challenge test. The fact that this is an insulin sensitive pathway suggests that inflammatory modulation may alter insulin signaling in overweight men.
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http://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0004525PLOS
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2643463PMC
April 2009

Short-term fatty acid intervention elicits differential gene expression responses in adipose tissue from lean and overweight men.

Genes Nutr 2008 Dec 26;3(3-4):127-37. Epub 2008 Nov 26.

Businessunit Biosciences, TNO Quality of Life, P.O. Box 360, 3700 AJ, Zeist, The Netherlands,

The goal of this study was to investigate the effect of a short-term nutritional intervention on gene expression in adipose tissue from lean and overweight subjects. Gene expression profiles were measured after consumption of an intervention spread (increased levels of polyunsaturated fatty acids, conjugated linoleic acid and medium chain triglycerides) and a control spread (40 g of fat daily) for 9 days. Adipose tissue gene expression profiles of lean and overweight subjects were distinctly different, mainly with respect to defense response and metabolism. The intervention resulted in lower expression of genes related to energy metabolism in lean subjects, whereas expression of inflammatory genes was down-regulated and expression of lipid metabolism genes was up-regulated in the majority of overweight subjects. Individual responses in overweight subjects were variable and these correlated better to waist-hip ratio and fat percentage than BMI.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s12263-008-0096-zDOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2593008PMC
December 2008

Atherosclerosis and liver inflammation induced by increased dietary cholesterol intake: a combined transcriptomics and metabolomics analysis.

Genome Biol 2007 ;8(9):R200

Department of Vascular and Metabolic Diseases, TNO-Quality of Life, BioSciences, Gaubius Laboratory, Zernikedreef 9, 2333 CK Leiden, The Netherlands.

Background: Increased dietary cholesterol intake is associated with atherosclerosis. Atherosclerosis development requires a lipid and an inflammatory component. It is unclear where and how the inflammatory component develops. To assess the role of the liver in the evolution of inflammation, we treated ApoE*3Leiden mice with cholesterol-free (Con), low (LC; 0.25%) and high (HC; 1%) cholesterol diets, scored early atherosclerosis and profiled the (patho)physiological state of the liver using novel whole-genome and metabolome technologies.

Results: Whereas the Con diet did not induce early atherosclerosis, the LC diet did so but only mildly, and the HC diet induced it very strongly. With increasing dietary cholesterol intake, the liver switches from a resilient, adaptive state to an inflammatory, pro-atherosclerotic state. The liver absorbs moderate cholesterol stress (LC) mainly by adjusting metabolic and transport processes. This hepatic resilience is predominantly controlled by SREBP-1/-2, SP-1, RXR and PPARalpha. A further increase of dietary cholesterol stress (HC) additionally induces pro-inflammatory gene expression, including pro-atherosclerotic candidate genes. These HC-evoked changes occur via specific pro-inflammatory pathways involving specific transcriptional master regulators, some of which are established, others newly identified. Notably, several of these regulators control both lipid metabolism and inflammation, and thereby link the two processes.

Conclusion: With increasing dietary cholesterol intake the liver switches from a mainly resilient (LC) to a predominantly inflammatory (HC) state, which is associated with early lesion formation. Newly developed, functional systems biology tools allowed the identification of novel regulatory pathways and transcriptional regulators controlling both lipid metabolism and inflammatory responses, thereby providing a rationale for an interrelationship between the two processes.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/gb-2007-8-9-r200DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2375038PMC
May 2008

Pathway and single gene analyses of inhibited Caco-2 differentiation by ascorbate-stabilized quercetin suggest enhancement of cellular processes associated with development of colon cancer.

Mol Nutr Food Res 2007 Aug;51(8):1031-45

TNO Quality of Life, Business Unit Biosciences, Zeist, The Netherlands.

The aim was to investigate mechanisms contributing to quercetin's previously described effects on cell-proliferation and -differentiation, which contradicted its proposed anticarcinogenic potency. In a 10-day experiment, 40 microM quercetin stabilized by 1 mM ascorbate reduced Caco-2 differentiation up to 50% (p < 0.001). Caco-2 RNA from days 5 and 10, hybridized on HG-U133A2.0 Affymetrix GeneChips(R), showed 1,743 affected genes on both days (p < 0.01). All 14 Caco-2 differentiation-associated genes showed decreased expression (p < 0.01), including intestinal alkaline phosphatase, that was confirmed technically (qRT-PCR) and functionally (enzyme-activity). The 1,743 genes contributed to 27 pathways (p < 0.05) categorized under six gene ontology (GO) processes, including apoptosis and cell-cycle. Genes within these GO-processes showed fold changes that suggest increased cell-survival and -proliferation. Furthermore, quercetin down-regulated expression of genes involved in tumor-suppression and phase II metabolism, and up-regulated oncogenes. Gene expression changes mediated by ascorbate-stabilized quercetin were concordant with those occurring in human colorectal carcinogenesis ( approximately 80-90%), but were opposite to those previously described for Caco-2 cells exposed to quercetin without ascorbate ( approximately 75-90%). In conclusion, gene expression among Caco-2 cells exposed to ascorbate-stabilized quercetin showed mechanisms contrary to what is expected for a cancer-preventive agent. Whether this unexpected in vitro effect is relevant in vivo, remains to be elucidated.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/mnfr.200600261DOI Listing
August 2007

High-protein and high-carbohydrate breakfasts differentially change the transcriptome of human blood cells.

Am J Clin Nutr 2006 Nov;84(5):1233-41

TNO Quality of Life, Zeist, Netherlands, and Wageningen University, Wageningen, The Netherlands.

Background: Application of transcriptomics technology in human nutrition intervention studies would allow for genome-wide screening of the effects of specific diets or nutrients and result in biomarker profiles.

Objective: The aim was to evaluate the potential of gene expression profiling in blood cells collected in a human intervention study that investigated the effect of a high-carbohydrate (HC) or a high-protein (HP) breakfast on satiety.

Design: Blood samples were taken from 8 healthy men before and 2 h after consumption of an HP or an HC breakfast. Both breakfasts contained acetaminophen for measuring the gastric emptying rate. Analysis of the transcriptome data focused on the effects of the HP or HC breakfast and of acetaminophen on blood leukocyte gene expression profiles.

Results: Breakfast consumption resulted in differentially expressed genes, 317 for the HC breakfast and 919 for the HP breakfast. Immune response and signal transduction, specifically T cell receptor signaling and nuclear transcription factor kappaB signaling, were the overrepresented functional groups in the set of 141 genes that were differentially expressed in response to both breakfasts. Consumption of the HC breakfast resulted in differential expression of glycogen metabolism genes, and consumption of the HP breakfast resulted in differential expression of genes involved in protein biosynthesis.

Conclusions: Gene expression changes in blood leukocytes corresponded with and may be related to the difference in macronutrient content of the breakfast, meal consumption as such, and acetaminophen exposure. This study illustrates the potential of gene expression profiling in blood to study the effects of dietary exposure in human intervention studies.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/ajcn/84.5.1233DOI Listing
November 2006

Integrated assessment by multiple gene expression analysis of quercetin bioactivity on anticancer-related mechanisms in colon cancer cells in vitro.

Eur J Nutr 2005 Mar 30;44(3):143-56. Epub 2004 Apr 30.

Wageningen University, Division of Toxicology, Wageningen, The Netherlands.

Background: Many different mechanisms are involved in nutrient-related prevention of colon cancer. In this study, a comprehensive assessment of the spectrum of possible biological actions of the bioactive compound quercetin is made using multiple gene expression analysis. Quercetin is a flavonoid that can inhibit proliferation of tumor cells and reduce the number of aberrant crypt foci, although increase of number of colon tumors was also reported.

Aim Of The Study: In order to elucidate possible mechanisms involved in its mode of action the effect of quercetin on expression of 4000 human genes in Caco-2 cells was studied and related to functional effects.

Methods: Caco-2 cells were exposed to 5 or 50 microM quercetin for 48 hours, differential expression of 4000 human genes was studied using microarrays and related to functional effects. Differentially expressed genes were categorized in seven functional groups: cell cycle and differentiation, apoptosis, tumor suppressor genes and oncogenes, cell adhesion and cell-cell interaction, transcription, signal transduction and energy metabolism. Also, cell proliferation and cell cycle distribution were measured.

Results: Quercetin (5 microM) downregulated expression of cell cycle genes (for example CDC6, CDK4 and cyclin D1), downregulated cell proliferation and induced cell cycle arrest in Caco-2 cells. After exposure to 50 microM quercetin cell proliferation decreased to 51.3% of control, and further decrease of the percentage of cells in the G1 phase coincided with an increase of the percentage of cells in the sub-G1 phase. Quercetin upregulated expression of several tumor suppressor genes. In addition, genes involved in signal transduction pathways like beta catenin/TCF signalling and MAPK signal transduction were influenced by quercetin.

Conclusions: This study shows that large-scale gene expression analysis in combination with functional assays yields a considerable amount of information on (anti-)carcinogenic potential of food components like quercetin.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s00394-004-0503-1DOI Listing
March 2005

Time- and dose-dependent effects of curcumin on gene expression in human colon cancer cells.

J Carcinog 2004 May 12;3(1). Epub 2004 May 12.

Wageningen University, Division of Toxicology, Tuinlaan 5, 6703 HE Wageningen, the Netherlands.

BACKGROUND: Curcumin is a spice and a coloring food compound with a promising role in colon cancer prevention. Curcumin protects against development of colon tumors in rats treated with a colon carcinogen, in colon cancer cells curcumin can inhibit cell proliferation and induce apoptosis, it is an anti-oxidant and it can act as an anti-inflammatory agent. The aim of this study was to elucidate mechanisms and effect of curcumin in colon cancer cells using gene expression profiling. METHODS: Gene expression changes in response to curcumin exposure were studied in two human colon cancer cell lines, using cDNA microarrays with four thousand human genes. HT29 cells were exposed to two different concentrations of curcumin and gene expression changes were followed in time (3, 6, 12, 24 and 48 hours). Gene expression changes after short-term exposure (3 or 6 hours) to curcumin were also studied in a second cell type, Caco-2 cells. RESULTS: Gene expression changes (>1.5-fold) were found at all time points. HT29 cells were more sensitive to curcumin than Caco-2 cells. Early response genes were involved in cell cycle, signal transduction, DNA repair, gene transcription, cell adhesion and xenobiotic metabolism. In HT29 cells curcumin modulated a number of cell cycle genes of which several have a role in transition through the G2/M phase. This corresponded to a cell cycle arrest in the G2/M phase as was observed by flow cytometry. Functional groups with a similar expression profile included genes involved in phase-II metabolism that were induced by curcumin after 12 and 24 hours. Expression of some cytochrome P450 genes was downregulated by curcumin in HT29 and Caco-2 cells. In addition, curcumin affected expression of metallothionein genes, tubulin genes, p53 and other genes involved in colon carcinogenesis. CONCLUSIONS: This study has extended knowledge on pathways or processes already reported to be affected by curcumin (cell cycle arrest, phase-II genes). Moreover, potential new leads to genes and pathways that could play a role in colon cancer prevention by curcumin were identified.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/1477-3163-3-8DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC421747PMC
May 2004
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