Research line 1
Niet ge- definieerd

Research line 1

Metabolic syndrome

Led by:  Patrick Schrauwen
Co-director:  Stef Kremers

Objectives

  • understand the interplay between diet, physical activity and clinical interventions on metabolic aberrations related to the metabolic syndrome
  • examine how nutrition, physical activity and clinical interventions can have beneficial metabolic and functional effects
  • understand and influence health/energy balance-related behaviours
  • discover new evidence-based targets for the prevention and treatment of metabolic syndromes

Programmes research line 1

Programme 1: Energy balance and obesity

Intervention strategies for long-term maintenance of energy balance and food intake. Focuses on relations between dietary components, energy expenditure, physical activity and body composition. The number of studies on (neuro)endocrine mechanisms, brain signalling, and genetic predisposition is increasing. Also focuses on understanding and influencing health/energy balance-related behaviours in interaction with biological factors to develop interventions suitable for large-scale dissemination.
 
Programme 2: Diabetes and cardiovascular disease risk

Identifying and characterizing how nutrition, physical activity and clinical interventions can have beneficial molecular, metabolic and functional effects. Focuses on skeletal muscle, (brown) adipose tissue, blood vessels, the intestine, and increasingly the liver. Studies designed to gain insight into the relationships between diet, lipid and glucose metabolism and low-grade systemic inflammation. Knowledge obtained from studies under ‘normal’ conditions is applied to study and understand metabolic disturbances involved in aetiology of e.g. type 2 diabetes mellitus and cardiovascular disease.

Research line 2
Niet ge- definieerd

Research line 2

Gut-liver homeostasis

Led by: Steven Olde Damink – Profile page
Co-director: Ronit Shiri Sverdlov – Profile page

Objectives

  • Mechanisms, pathways and factors that contribute to obtain and maintain optimal gut and liver health with particular emphasis on the gut-liver axis;
  • Disturbances in gut and liver health under various conditions ranging from mild stress to severe injury including gut or liver failuree
  • Regenerative processes in gut and liver that help to restore and ultimately prevent gut or liver injury or failure. Our mission is to explore factors and provide conditions that help to maintain or restore optimal gut and liver health.


Programmes research line 2

Programme 1: Gut-liver metabolism

Focused on inter-organ adaptive responses to alleviate compromised liver function under conditions of stress, obesity, metabolic syndrome, liver failure, and systemic insults (sepsis, ischaemia). The initiative begin in 2009 to come to a closer interaction between clinicians and basic researchers has resulted in:

  1. excellent surgical models (major liver surgery, resections) for metabolic studies
  2. focus on obesity and metabolic syndrome, NAFLD and NASH (cooperation with surgical clinics for bariatric surgery) and
  3. animal models for NASH, allowing us to explore the underlying molecular mechanisms of NASH.

Also concentration on cholesterol metabolism in Kuppfer cells in collaboration with groups working on atherosclerosis within FHML.

Programme 2: Intestinal integrity and defence

Focuses on barrier (dys)function in the gastrointestinal tract, innate defence, luminal factors (microbiota, nutrients, chemicals), the neuro-endocrine-immune system and gut brain axis in health and disease. Since 2008, our goal has been to focus research on intestinal integrity and defence on specific disease entities within the MUMC clinical expertise and top-academic level patient care. Population based, well phenotyped cohorts have been set up:

  1. IBD (chronic inflammatory bowel diseases), a population based cohort of 3000 patients from South Limburg region (biobank now n=1000)
  2. IBS (irritable bowel syndrome) cohort (n=600, biobank) and
  3. colonic polyps cohort ( n=10.000).

These cohorts allow research with focus on interaction between chronic disease, inflammation, lifestyle and diet, metabolism, (epi)genetics and malignant transformation.

Research line 3
Niet ge- definieerd

Research line 3

Chronic inflammatory disease and wasting

Led by: L.J.C. van Loon – Profile page
Co-director: Jeroen Kooman – Profile page

Objectives

  • perform research on determinants and pathways involved in respiratory and systemic inflammation in chronic disease and to understand systemic manifestations and metabolic disturbances in chronic disease progression with a specific focus on skeletal muscle weakness
  • contribute novel insight in healthy and accelerating ageing in other chronic wasting disorders and diseases
  • bring together expertise in the fields of host-defence, metabolic networks, including the oxidant-anti-oxidant metabolism and muscle metabolism and function with a focus on chronic inflammatory processes particularly in COPD patients


Programmes research line 3

Programme 1: Host defence and metabolic networks

Study of innate immunological processes in relation to a variety of environmental exposures like smoke, inorganic dust, particulate matter and bacterial and viral organisms in stable conditions and during exacerbations. In order to target local and systemic inflammatory processes, research particularly focuses on the respiratory system, with Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Diseases (COPD) as a clinical model. Systemic inflammation is an important mechanism linking research of both programme 1 and 2 in relation to body compositional abnormalities, muscle wasting and muscle weakness. Also understanding of the cellular and molecular redox-regulating mechanisms in inflammation is important to design anti-oxidant strategies for the treatment of various inflammatory disease conditions. Additionally there is research on oxidant / anti-oxidant balances in local and systemic compartments.

Programme 2: Skeletal muscle weakness and body composition in ageing and disease

Focuses on translational research into the metabolic aberrations and molecular mechanisms of abnormal body composition, skeletal muscle atrophy and dysfunction in chronic respiratory disorders, type II diabetes and the elderly with specific attention to the role of inflammation, (intermittent) hypoxia, inactivity and blunted responses to diet and exercise. Specific questions relate to the molecular mechanism of muscle growth and regeneration, the muscle fibre type shift, understanding the role of diaphragmatic, upper and lower limb muscle function in functional performance capacity and evaluation of exercise, nutritional and pharmacological interventions.

Research line 4
Niet ge- definieerd

Research line 4

Gene-environment interactions

Led by: F.J. van Schooten – Profile page

Objective

  • Focus on major research‘Gene-environment Interactions’, the combined effects of environmental (including dietary) exposures and genetic background on chronic degenerative diseases
  • Research is concentrated around the theme 'Disease susceptibility', focusing on development and application of biomarkers in prevention of diet-related chronic diseases
  • Identify, understand and characterize nutritional, environmental and lifestyle factors that, in interaction with genetic backgrounds, determine the onset of chronic diseases
  • Research into genomics, bioinformatics and genetic epidemiological approaches to identify aetiological determinants or biomarkers that can be used to establish risk profiles and innovative prevention strategies

Programme research line 4

The programme focuses on environment-diet-gene interactions in their basic and applied research into common chronic disorders, including inflammatory lung and bowel disease, metabolic syndrome, and cancer. We deliver internationally competitive translational research leading to prevention strategies in populations and improved treatment and disease management. The programme stresses those novel biological markers and environmental or behaviour factors that can help to determine pathological processes. The goal is to establish early indicators to protect health by guiding treatment and/or adjusting diet. More recently nutrigenomics research is more focused on health, defined not just as the absence of disease but also the ability to withstand challenges.

NUTRIM research centres around the following research lines

  • Research line 1

    Metabolic syndrome

    Dit is er niet
  • Research line 2

    Gut-liver homeostasis

    Dit is er niet
  • Research line 3

    Chronic inflammatory disease and wasting

    Dit is er niet
  • Research line 4

    Gene-environment interactions

    Dit is er niet