Human metabolic chambers reveal a coordinated metabolic-physiologic response to nutrition.

medRxiv : the preprint server for health sciences

The emerging field of precision nutrition is based on the notion that inter-individual responses across diets of different calorie-macronutrient content may contribute to inter-individual differences in metabolism, adiposity, and weight gain. Free-living diet studies have been traditionally challenged by difficulties in controlling adherence to prescribed calories and macronutrient content and rarely allow a period of metabolic stability prior to metabolic measures (to minimize influences of weight changes). In this context, key physiologic measures central to precision nutrition responses may be most precisely quantified via whole room indirect calorimetry over 24-h, in which precise control of activity and nutrition can be achieved. In addition, these studies represent unique "N of 1" human crossover metabolic-physiologic experiments during which specific molecular pathways central to nutrient metabolism may be discerned. Here, we quantified 263 circulating metabolites during a ≈40-day inpatient admission in which up to 94 participants underwent seven monitored 24-h nutritional interventions of differing macronutrient composition in a whole-room indirect calorimeter to capture precision metabolic responses. Broadly, we observed heterogenous responses in metabolites across dietary chambers, with the exception of carnitines which tracked with 24-h respiratory quotient. We identified excursions in shared metabolic species (e.g., carnitines, glycerophospholipids, amino acids) that mapped onto gold-standard calorimetric measures of substrate oxidation preference and lipid availability. These findings support a coordinated metabolic-physiologic response to nutrition, highlighting the relevance of these controlled settings to uncover biological pathways of energy utilization during precision nutrition studies.

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medRxiv : the preprint server for health sciences
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