W-3002 Multistate Project
Nutrient Bioavailability – Phytonutrients and Beyond Participants
Her research is focused on antioxidants and free radical metabolism in prevention of diabetes and the role of diets in gene expressions that influence the susceptibility to chronic diseases. Tammy has published more than 110 papers in peer reviewed journals, two books, and 100 abstracts and conference proceedings. She is a member of NASA’s External Advisory Council for National Space Biomedical Research Institute and a member of the international editorial board of the Journal of the Society for Free Radical Biology and Medicine.
The underlying mission of the Bruno Laboratory is to define the mechanisms by which dietary antioxidants and phytonutrients contribute to optimal human health. Specifically, we are interested in elucidating the protective activities by which vitamin E (as α and γ-tocopherol) and dietary polyphenols such as green tea catechins, quercetin, and soy isoflavones exhibit their bioactivity and regulate the initiation and progression of obesity- and oxidative stress-triggered chronic diseases. Our laboratory is actively underway in evaluating these dietary agents as novel therapeutic strategies against nonalcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) and cardiovascular disease (CVD), disorders that are strongly associated with obesity and exacerbated oxidative stress. In support of these goals, controlled studies are routinely conducted in human and animal models of oxidative stress such as obesity, dietary supplementation/restriction, or cigarette smoking. Ultimately, our expectations are to 1) elucidate the mechanisms by which dietary antioxidants and phytonutrients regulate oxidative/nitrative stress biomarkers, 2) discover and validate novel biomarkers of oxidative stress, and 3) to work towards the implementation of novel dietary strategies for achieving optimal health in humans.
Andrew Clifford, PhDDistinguished Professor, Department of Nutrition
Nutritionist in Agricultural Experiment Station
University of California – Davis
Dr. Clifford´s research concerns the dynamic and kinetic behavior of nutrient metabolism as it occurs in vivo in humans. Nutrients of special interest include folate, vitamin E, β-carotene, lutein, and food (fruits/vegetables) components (flavonoids, isothiocyanates, catechins, sulfaraphanes, reservatrol). Foods rich in the above components protect against and hold promise for improved management of developmental, chronic, and degenerative diseases.
Molecular mechanisms of chemoprevention of bioactive food components, mainly proteins and flavonoids, and their safety. We study food components with health benefits; analysis, characterization and mechanism of action of antimutagenic and anticarcinogenic compounds in foods (legumes, oilseeds and vegetables). We currently are working with bioactive proteins in different legumes. Our research group investigates the role of processing on the presence, concentration and physicochemical characteristics of proteins with biological potential against transformed human cells as well as their safety, such as allergenic potential. We also are studying the health benefits of tea, in particular the molecular mechanisms underlying the biological effects of ethnic teas used in folk medicine to combat several disorders, including cancer. This scientific study will introduce new materials to improve human health.
Lipids play an important role in food quality and have been linked to the progression of diseases including cardiovascular disease. Our research group is actively study the bioactivity of lipids including omega-3 fatty acids, antioxidants and carotenoids as well as technologies to incorporate these nutritionally important compounds into food systems. Since many of these lipids can undergo oxidative deterioration in food systems, we have also conducted research to understand the molecular and physical factors that impact oxidation pathways so effective antioxidant technologies can be developed. Oxidation pathways have been studied in a variety of complex food systems including emulsions, reverse micelles and muscle foods. Antioxidant technologies being developed include emulsion droplet interfacial engineering, antioxidant delivery systems and metal chelation by natural compounds. Recent research has also focused on the impact of food components on the bioavailability of lipids.
Our research team uses in vitro and in vivo models to investigate the gastrointestinal metabolism and efficiency of absorption of health-promoting compounds in plant foods and dietary supplements. We also are investigating the activities of these compounds in maintaining a healthy gastrointestinal tract. The planned Center will provide us with opportunities to further expand our collaborations with talented colleagues at OSU. Moreover, the trans-disciplinary emphasis of the Center creates a uniquely rich environment for the training of my students in the many areas for which I lack expertise and insight.
My research focuses on understanding the molecular mechanisms by which nutrient status affects the initiation and/or progression of chronic disease states such as cancer. The main areas of interest in the laboratory are 1) Function of zinc across the lifespan: We have found that deficits in zinc intake could also have a major impact on an individual’s susceptibility to DNA damage and risk for developing cancer. We are also interested in the effects of zinc during development and in the aging immune system. 2) Dietary influences on prostate cancer development: We have also found that other dietary compounds, especially those found in traditional Asian diets, such as soy, teas and cruciferous vegetables (such as broccoli) can limit prostate cancer development A major interest in the laboratory is understanding the interaction between diet, epigenetic alterations in histone structure and prostate cancer risk.
Our research program investigates the interaction between epithelial and neuronal genotype and dietary factors in cancer risk. Specifically, we study the role of dietary factors in murine models of normal, preneoplastic and metastatic colon epithelial cells to assess their role on biological processes involved in cell number homeostasis and cross-talk with immune cells and products of adipose tissue. Two current projects study the effect of dietary constituents for the treatment and prevention of brain cancer and colon cancer, respectively. We have a large collaborative study of the efficacy of the energy-restricted ketogenic diet in the treatment of the most prevalent form of brain cancer in adults, glioblastoma multiforme. We study the mechanistic basis for the efficacy of the ketogenic diet in cell culture studies examining the regulation of energy pathways that render neurons and glial cells susceptible to ketosis-associated cell death. In colon carcinogenesis, we seek to identify the transformation stage at which dietary nitrates and nitrites influence risk. To address these questions, we utilize murine colon carcinogenesis models that mimic colitis and polypoid etiologic pathways. Exposure to dietary nitrate and nitrite before or after establishment of preneoplastic lesions and after metastasis will provide insights into the beneficial or potentially harmful stage-specific effects of these components of vegetables and fruit.
Mechanisms of intestinal absorption of lipids and lipid-soluble vitamins; dietary phytochemicals and lipid metabolism.
Dyslipidemia and chronic inflammation are major contributors to the development of obesity-associated metabolic disease such as cardiovascular disease, nonalcoholic fatty liver disease and type 2 diabetes. My research focuses on the identification of molecular mediators that are involved in the crosstalk between lipid metabolism and inflammatory signaling pathways and on the elucidation of molecular mechanisms by which dietary factors, such as fatty acids, blue-green algae, astaxanthin and phytochemicals, play regulatory roles in the cholesterol metabolism and in the integration of lipid metabolism and inflammation.
The potential of phytochemicals, functional foods, micronutrients, and/or botanicals to inhibit prostate cancer development and/or progression and characterization of the mechanism of action through biochemical and molecular biology techniques.
Our research group investigates the potential for naturally occurring compounds in foods, their isolated components, or analogues that could be incorporated into the diet and prevent or reduce risk factors for cardiovascular disease such as dyslipidemia, obesity, diabetes and inflammation. We are also exploring the role of these compounds in bone health. In our research, we utilize cell cultures and animal models to understand if and how bioactive food components can reduce these chronic conditions, and then apply the information learned to develop effective prevention strategies in humans. Currently, we have two clinical studies investigating the effect of freeze-dried mango on body composition in obese individuals and on blood glucose in prediabetics. We are also investigating the effects of mango and watermelon on skeletal health in ovariectomized mice. Other functional foods that we are working on are wheat germ oil, bittermelon, and flaxseed.
Current research focuses are using food or food bioactives to prevent chronic diseases, such as obesity and osteoporosis. Interest in research involving obesity prevention was derived from earlier work where conjugated linoleic acid (CLA) was discovered as a major component of body fat reduction in animal models. In addition, current research focuses on determining the efficacy and mechanisms of conjugated fatty acids in adult-onset obesity animal models. Secondly, with the growing elderly population and the severity of osteoporosis incidence among elders, it is very important to prevent osteoporosis, particularly with dietary intervention. We currently focus on determining the molecular mechanisms of CLA on adipocyte and osteoblast differentiation using bone marrow mesenchymal stem cells. The ultimate research goal is to explore biologically active compounds that could impact human health and improve the quality of life.
The major research efforts of my laboratory are in the area of biochemical nutrition and, in particular, the control of one carbon metabolism. We investigate experimental nutrition problems at a basic molecular or cellular level to obtain a better understanding of factors that influence nutritional requirements and how this varies among the population. We study how genetic variation in the pathways of one carbon metabolism influence chronic disease risk and susceptibility to birth defects using humans and genetically modified animal models.
Trace elements; Zinc and cognition; International nutrition problems
Neurobiological basis of sleep, physical activity and feeding as they relate to obesity and sleep disorders.;
We study the role of dietary bioactive compounds in obesity-promoted colon cancer prevention and molecular mechanisms involved in inflammation, colonocyte proliferation and apoptosis. We are also interested in how functional foods and bioactive compounds regulate the glycemic index, hunger/satiety hormones, colonic-systemic oxidative stress, and fat accumulation, especially when these foods are subjected to post-harvest treatments, storage, and processing. The long-term goal of my research is to optimize the health profiles of food products and provide modern evidence for ancient wisdom on diet and disease.
Her research interests include mineral bioavailability, calcium metabolism, and bone health. Dr. Weaver was appointed to the 2005 U.S. Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee and elected to the Institute of Medicine of the National Academy of Sciences in 2010. She is Deputy Director of the Indiana Clinical and Translational Sciences Center, Director of the Women’s Global Health Institute at Purdue, and past President of the American Society for Nutrition. She has published over 300 original research articles and 100 book chapters and reviews.
Dr. Zempleni’s research focuses on epigenetic mechanisms through which micronutrients and bioactive compounds regulate genes and maintain genome stability. He is particularly interested in the roles of the biotin ligase, holocarboxylase synthetase, in creating multiprotein gene repression complexes in chromatin that contribute to the normal progression of meiosis, the repression of transposons, and the prevention of cancer. A second, more recent, focus in the Zempleni laboratory is the role of vitamins and bioactive food compounds in stem cell differentiation, particularly the differentiation of adipocytes and osteoblasts. Dr. Zempleni uses a variety of model organisms, including human subjects, normal and transgenic mice, normal and transgenic Drosophila melanogaster (fruit flies), cell cultures, and in vitro approaches in his studies.
Janos Zempleni, PhDWilla Cather Professor of Molecular Nutrition
Department of Nutrition and Health Sciences
University of Nebraska – Lincoln