Nutrition and human

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Molecular Aspects of Medicine 32 (2011) 1–70

Contents lists available at ScienceDirect

Molecular Aspects of Medicine
journal homepage: www.elsevier.com/locate/mam

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Nutrition and human health from a sex–gender perspective
Maria Marino a, Roberta Masella b, Pamela Bulzomi a, Ilaria Campesi c,f, Walter Malorni d,e, Flavia Franconi c,f,⇑
a

Department of Biology, UniversityRoma Tre, Viale Guglielmo Marconi 446, I-00146 Roma, Italy Department of Veterinary Public Health and Food Safety, Italian National Institute of Health, Rome, Viale Regina Elena 299, I-00161 Rome, Italy c Center for Biotechnology Development and Biodiversity Research, Via Vienna 2, I-07100 Sassari, Italy d Department of Therapeutic Research and Medicine Evaluation, Italian National Institute ofHealth, Viale Regina Elena 299, I-00161 Rome, Italy e San Raffaele Institute Sulmona, Viale dell’Agricoltura 1, L’Aquila, Italy f Department of Pharmacology, University of Sassari and National Laboratory, INBB Osilo-Sassari, Via Muroni 23, I-07100 Sassari, Italy
b

a r t i c l e
Keywords: Nutrition Health Sex Gender Food Beverage

i n f o

a b s t r a c t
Nutrition exerts a life-long impact onhuman health, and the interaction between nutrition and health has been known for centuries. The recent literature has suggested that nutrition could differently influence the health of male and female individuals. Until the last decade of the 20th century, research on women has been neglected, and the results obtained in men have been directly translated to women in both the medicine andnutrition fields. Consequently, most modern guidelines are based on studies predominantly conducted on men. However, there are many sex–gender differences that are the result of multifactorial inputs, including gene repertoires, sex steroid hormones, and environmental factors (e.g., food components). The effects of these different inputs in male and female physiology will be different in different periodsof ontogenetic development as well as during pregnancy and the ovarian cycle in females, which are also age dependent. As a result, different strategies have evolved to maintain male and female body homeostasis, which, in turn, implies that there are important differences in the bioavailability, metabolism, distribution, and elimination of foods and beverages in males and females. This articlewill review some of these differences underlying the impact of food components on the risk of developing diseases from a sex–gender perspective. Ó 2011 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

Abbreviations: c-GCS, c-glutamylcysteine synthetase; 11b-HSD-2, 11b-hydroxysteroid dehydrogenase; 19- and 20-HETE, 19- and 20-hydroxyeicosatetraenoic acids; 5,6-, 8,9-, 11,12-, and 14,15-EET, 5,6-, 8,9-, 11,12-,and 14,15-epoxyeicosatrienoic acids; AAG, a-1 acid glycoprotein; AgRP, agouti-related protein; AR, androgen receptor; ARE, androgen response element; ArKO, aromatase knockout mouse; ASK, apoptosis signal-regulating kinase; ATP, adenosine triphosphate; BMI, body mass index; CART, cocaine- and amphetamine-regulated transcript; COX, cyclo-oxygenase; CYP, cytochrome P450 enzyme; DHA, docosahexaenoicacid; DPA, docosapentaenoic acid; EE, energy expenditure; EPA, eicosapentaenoic acid; ER, estrogen receptor; ERE, estrogen response element; ERK, extracellular signal-regulated kinases; FFA, free fatty acid; FM, fat mass; GPx, glutathione peroxidase; GR, glutathione reductase; GSH, glutathione; GSSG, glutathione disulfide; GST, glutathione-S-transferase; HDL, high density lipoprotein; HMGR,3-hydroxyl-3-methyl glutaryl CoA reductase; IGF- I, insulin-like growth factor-I; IGF-II, insulin-like growth factor-II; JNK, c-Jun-terminal kinase; LBD, ligand-binding domain; LBM, lean body mass; LDL, low density lipoprotein; LOX, lypo-oxygenase; LT, leukotrienes; MAPKs, mitogen-activated protein kinases; MI, myocardial infarction; NO, nitric oxide; NOS, nitric oxide synthase; NPY, neuropeptide Y; Nrf,...
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