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Personalised nutrition

"Genetic drift, gut microbiota (both composition and functionality) and environmental factors (diet, lifestyle, etc.) is a complex cocktail of interplaying actors behind the interindividual variability observed in clinical trials, not only with drugs but also with dietary compounds. UM clustering suggests a different individuals’ cardiovascular risk pattern and also a personalised effect of ellagitannin-containing foods such as pomegranate, probably associated to specific gut microbial communities, which could explain the lack of consensus about their benefits. Therefore, clinical trials with foods or dietary compounds should take into account the large inherent interindividual variability, which might be behind the scarce number of accepted health claims by the EFSA in relation to dietary polyphenols and other phytochemicals"

 2016 Nov 23. doi: 10.1002/mnfr.201600830. [Epub ahead of print]

Clustering according to urolithin metabotype explains the interindividual variability in the improvement of cardiovascular risk biomarkers in overweight-obese individuals consuming pomegranate: A randomised clinical trial.



The pomegranate lipid-lowering properties remain controversial, probably due to the interindividual variability in polyphenol (ellagitannins) metabolism.


We aimed at investigating whether the microbial-derived ellagitannin-metabolizing phenotypes, i.e. urolithin metabotypes A, (UM-A), B (UM-B) and 0 (UM-0), influence the effects of pomegranate extract (PE) consumption on eighteen cardiovascular risk biomarkers in healthy overweight-obese individuals.


A double-blind, cross-over, dose-response, randomised, placebo-controlled trial was conducted. The study (POMEcardio) consisted of 2 test-phases (dose-1 and dose-2, lasting 3 weeks each) and a 3-week washout period between each phase. Forty nine participants (BMI>27 kg/m2 ) daily consumed one (dose-1, 160 mg phenolics/day) or four (dose-2, 640 mg phenolics/day) PE or placebo capsules. Notably, UM-B individuals showed the highest baseline cardiovascular risk. After dose-2, total-cholesterol (-15.5±3.7%), LDL-cholesterol (-14.9±2.1%), small-LDL-cholesterol (-47±7%), non-HDL-cholesterol (-11.3±2.5%), apolipoprotein-B (-12±2.2%) and oxidised-LDL-cholesterol (-24±2.5%) dose-dependently decreased (P<0 .05="" abstracttext="" and="" became="" but="" consumption.="" correlated="" effects="" following="" gordonibacter="" in="" increase="" levels.="" non-producers="" of="" only="" partially="" pe="" producers="" production="" subjects.="" the="" these="" three="" um-b="" urolithin="" were="" with="">


Urolithin metabotype (UM) clustering suggests a personalised effect of ellagitannin-containing foods and could explain the controversial pomegranate benefits. Research on the specific role of urolithins and the microbiota associated to each UM is warranted. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.


Cardiometabolic; EFSA; Gut microbiota; Metabotype; Urolithins