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Epigenetics of Undernutrition

  • Omar Ramos-Lopez
  • Jose Ignacio Riezu-Boj
  • Fermin I. Milagro
  • J. Alfredo Martinez
Living reference work entry

Abstract

The term undernutrition commonly refers to underfeeding and poor nutritional status. This condition is primarily caused by an inadequate intake of dietary energy or some specific nutrients, which accompany starvation or famine, voluntary reduction of food intake, gastrointestinal disorders, parasitic infestations, and severe pathologies that result in enhanced tissue catabolism. Of special importance is undernutrition during gestation (unbalanced maternal diet or intrauterine growth retardation) and lactation, as it compromises in- utero development and impairs infant growth and neurocognitive functions. Moreover, undernutrition is related to immunodeficiency, accelerated aging, and has potential deleterious consequences for adult health, including neurological disorders, cardiovascular diseases, obesity, diabetes, and cancer. Cumulative evidence has demonstrated that diverse environmental factors, including undernutrition, can modify epigenetic marks (particularly DNA methylation, covalent histone modifications, and noncoding RNAs) throughout life, affecting gene expression and cell function, with long-term effects on health in adult life. Of particular interest is the impact of undernutrition on the epigenome driven by the lack of dietary methyl donors (choline, betaine, folate, and vitamins B2, B6, and B12) and other micronutrients, low-protein diets, calorie restriction, and famine exposure. This knowledge is contributing to a better understanding of the role of dietary deficiencies in the development of several adverse conditions through epigenetic mechanisms. Moreover, these scientific insights are leading to design novel dietary interventions targeting the epigenome.

Keywords

Famine Starvation Methyl donors Micronutrients Protein Calories Genetics DNA methylation Histone modifications miRNA Chromatin remodeling Perinatal nutrition Aging Chronic diseases 

List of Abbreviations

AAR

Amino acid response

ABCA1

ATP-binding cassette subfamily A member 1

AN

Anorexia nervosa

ANGPT2

Angiopoietin 2

ASNS

Asparagine synthetase

ATF3

Activating transcription factor 3

ATF4

Activating transcription factor 4

BDNF

Brain-derived neurotrophic factor

BOLA

Transcriptional factor BOLA

C/EBP-β

CCAAT/enhancer-binding protein beta

CDH23

Cadherin-related 23

CDKN3

Cyclin-dependent kinase inhibitor 3

COMT

Catechol-O-methyltransferase

CYP7A1

Hepatic cholesterol 7α-hydroxylase

DOHaD

Developmental Origins of Health and Disease

EXD3

Exonuclease 3′-5′ domain containing 3

FASN

Fatty acid synthase

G6PC

Glucose-6-phosphatase catalytic subunit

GATA-4

GATA-binding protein 4

GLUT4

Glucose transporter 4

GNAS

GNAS complex locus

GRIA1

Glutamate ionotropic receptor AMPA-type subunit 1

HSD11B1

Hydroxysteroid 11-beta dehydrogenase 1

HSD11B2

Hydroxysteroid 11-beta dehydrogenase 2

HTR2A

5-hydroxytryptamine receptor 2A

ICAM1

Intercellular adhesion molecule 1

IFNG

Interferon gamma

IGF1

Insulin-like growth factor 1

IGF2

Insulin-like growth factor 2

IL-10

Interleukin-10

IL-6

Interleukin-6

INSIGF2

INS-IGF2 read-through

INSR

Insulin receptor

IQ

Intellectual coefficient

IUGR

Intrauterine growth retardation

KLF13

Kruppel-like factor 13

LDLR

Low-density lipoprotein receptor

LEP

Leptin

LINE-1

Long interspersed nuclear elements

LncRNA

Long- noncoding RNAs

LXRα

Liver X receptor alpha

MAPK

Mitogen-activated protein kinase

MCR

Moderate calorie restriction

ME

Metastable epialleles

MEG3

Maternally expressed 3 (nonprotein coding)

MIR200B

microRNA 200b

MiRNA

microRNA

NETO1

Neuropilin and tolloid-like 1

NR1H3

Nuclear receptor subfamily 1 group H member 3 gene

NTD

Neural tube defects

PAK3

p21 (RAC1)-activated kinase 3

PAX8

Paired box 8

PCK1

Phosphoenolpyruvate carboxykinase 1

P-DMRs

Prenatal malnutrition-associated differentially methylated regions

PGC-1α

PPAR-γ coactivator-1α

PPAR-γ

Peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor gamma

PRSS12

Protease, serine 12

PUFA

Long-chain polyunsaturated fatty acids

RFTN1

Raftlin, lipid raft linker 1

SAM

S-adenosylmethionine

SCR

Severe caloric restriction

siRNA

Small interfering RNA

SMAD7

SMAD family member 7

SREBF1

Sterol regulatory element-binding transcription factor 1

STAT3

Signal transducer and activator of transcription 3

SYNGAP1

Synaptic Ras GTPase-activating protein 1

TFAP2A

Transcription factor AP-2 alpha

TLR2

Toll-like receptor 2

TNXB

Hypermethylated tenascin XB gene

VEGFC

Vascular endothelial growth factor C

VHL

von Hippel-Lindau

VIPR2

Vasoactive intestinal peptide receptor 2

VTRNA2-1

Vault RNA 2-1

ZFP57

ZFP57 zinc finger protein

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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  • Omar Ramos-Lopez
    • 1
    • 2
  • Jose Ignacio Riezu-Boj
    • 1
  • Fermin I. Milagro
    • 1
  • J. Alfredo Martinez
    • 1
    • 3
    • 4
  1. 1.Department of Nutrition, Food Science and Physiology, and Centre for Nutrition ResearchUniversity of NavarraPamplonaSpain
  2. 2.Department of Molecular Biology in MedicineCivil Hospital of Guadalajara “Fray Antonio Alcalde”GuadalajaraMexico
  3. 3.Department of Nutrition and DieteticsKing’s College LondonLondonUK
  4. 4.Madrid Institute of Advanced Studies (IMDEA Food)MadridSpain

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