The team analyzed the genomics and levels of 722 metabolites (molecules produced when the body breaks down food) among 8,809 people from the NIHR BioResource. The way the body breaks down food is known to be strongly driven by a person’s genetics.
It was found that there are 202 unique genomic regions whose variations are associated with the levels of 478 different metabolites. Among these, 74 genomic regions are not associated with any metabolites (as evidenced in previous works).
“Some of the metabolites we looked at are linked to BMI and could give us an insight into obesity in some individuals. It is very early research, but in the future these findings could help to develop approaches to maintaining a healthy weight which take into account a person’s genetic profile,” says senior author Dr. Cristina Menni from the department of twin research and genetic epidemiology, King’s College London.