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Dietary patterns and genetic predisposition to obesity, type 2 diabetes, and cardiovascular disease

Dietary patterns and genetic predisposition to obesity, type 2 diabetes, and cardiovascular disease

Principal Investigator: Professor Jingjing Jiao
Approved Research ID: 47365
Approval date: March 11th 2020

Lay summary

Obesity and related metabolic diseases, including type 2 diabetes (T2D) and cardiovascular disease (CVD), are considered to be driven by genetic, environmental and lifestyle factors, including dietary factors. Although accumulative evidence demonstrates an inverse association between healthy dietary patterns and the risk of obesity, T2D and CVD, there has been substantial and well-recognized within-population heterogeneity in responseto dietary factors, which may partly result from genetic variation and gene-diet interactions. Hence, the explanation of average responses to dietary prevention strategies from previous studies assuming that interventions work ubiquitously in individuals with different genetic makeup can often be misleading. Alternative approaches are warranted to explain disparities of obesity,T2D and CVD risk.To date, large-scale genomewide association studies in Europeans have successfully identified genetic loci robustly associated with risk of obesity, T2D and coronary artery disease (CAD), respectively. These risk alleles, when aggregated into a genetic risk score, can provide a continuous measure ofthe overall genetic susceptibility to obesity, T2D, or CAD.

However, whether genetic predisposition to obesity,T2D and CVD could be modified by dietary factors is unclear. Therefore, this proposed project aims to examine i) the associations of different dietary patterns with risk of obesity, diabetes and CVD; ii) to assess the effect of genetic risk scores based on known related loci on the prediction of obesity, diabetes and CVD; ii) to explore potential interactions between dietary patterns and genetic risk scores on risk of developing obesity, diabetes and CVD, respectively. The project has a specific focus on different dietary patterns and obesity-related metabolic diseases, but it will also look at important components of diet patterns, including red meat, fish, dairy products coffee etc. The duration of this project will be 3 years. We expect to identify vulnerable individuals who are more likely to experience a differential response to dietary prevention strategies on obesity, T2D or CVD. This knowledge may then be translated into personalized recommendations aimed at stratifying dietary interventions according to individual's genetic makeup.