Background: Pregnancy and infancy are critical periods for nutritional programming of metabolic health. Epigenetic changes could play a crucial role in pathways leading from early-life nutrition to metabolic health across the life course.
Methods: NutriPROGRAM is an international collaborative project with partners in Europe and Canada. It capitalises on rich, existing and complementary nutritional, metabolic and epigenetic datasets from observational and intervention studies in pregnancy, childhood and adulthood, together covering the full life course. Researchers at the University of Bristol (Gemma Sharp and Laura Johnson) lead a work package that specifically focuses on identifying causal relationships between nutritional exposures in pregnancy and infancy, DNA methylation and metabolic health.
Results: The study launched in February 2019 and has already made good progress in integrating sets of early-life nutritional factors in mothers and infants.
Translational potential: Eventually, NutriPROGRAM will develop a sustainable, translational, international collaboration for current and future studies on nutrition and epigenetics and their role in sustaining good health throughout the life course.