Research Program. Precision Nutrition and
Cardiometabolic Health

Epigenetics of Lipid Metabolism Group

Group leader: Dr. Alberto Dávalos Herrera

Objectives: cardiometabolic diseases are the main causes of mortality in the world and excess in the diet is one of the main causes of these human diseases linked to our modern life-style. The objective is to understand how different non-coding RNAs regulate lipid metabolism during states of health and disease, developing new strategies, both pharmacological and dietetic, to modulate their function. Pharmacological or dietary modulation of the activity of non-coding RNAs that, ultimately, regulate the metabolism of lipids lead to the prevention or treatment of cardiometabolic diseases. The increasing prevalence of chronic diseases has prompted a strategic focus on prevention strategies. While Precision (personalized) Medicine strives to provide ‘the right therapeutic strategy for the right person at the right time’ a distinct approach is needed for disease prevention.

Epigenetics of Lipid Metabolism Group also focus on understanding lifestyle modification of the pigenome in order to try to personalize the health of individuals using epigenetics for the development of Precision Nutrition. This group works to generate new basic knowledge of how non-coding RNAs regulate the metabolism of lipids under physiological and pathological conditions. To find and evaluate minor dietary components for their ability to modulate the activity of non-coding RNAs associated with the metabolism of lipids.

To carry out collaborative projects with the food and pharmaceutical industry to test and develop new dietary supplements or functional foods based on solid scientific knowledge to prevent or treat a variety of lipid metabolism disorders. And, to incorporate the use non-coding RNAs data to develop Precision Nutrition. In this endeavor, the group actively collaborate with many international research groups located at the following institutions: CINVESTAV (Mérida, Mexico), URFJ (Rio de Janeiro, Brasil), IMSERM UMR1011 (Lille, France) and many other national research groups. 

Dr. Alberto Dávalos Herrera

Group leader of the Epigenetics of Lipid Metabolism Group

Dr. Alberto Dávalos holds a degree in Pharmacy and Biochemistry by San Marcos University (Lima) and a PhD in Pharmacy by Universidad Complutense de Madrid (Madrid). He has conducted postdoctoral research at the Hospital Ramón y Cajal (Madrid), at Yale University School of Medicine, (New Haven), and at New York University School of Medicine (New York). Dr. Dávalos’s research program focuses in identifying and characterizing new noncoding RNAs (miRNAs, lncRNAs and other type of regulatory RNAs) that regulate lipid metabolism and the effects of minor dietary components (micronutrients) on their expression.

Noncoding RNAs have been recognized as critical modulators of cardiovascular system in health and disease. He hopes to: (i) identify new therapeutic strategies through modulating noncoding RNAs levels by the diet or other lifestyle factors to treat dyslipidemia and to prevent atherosclerosis and cardiovascular diseases; and (ii) understand lifestyle modification of the epigenome and personalize the health of individuals using epigenetics (particularly noncoding RNAs) for the development of Precision Nutrition.

Email: alberto.davalos@imdea.org
Phone: +34 91 727 81 00, ext. 206 

Members

Visiting researches

Visiting researches:
Flavia Brasil Spreafico
University of Rio de Janeiro


Students

Diana Carolina Mantilla Escalante
Andrea del Saz Lara
Inés Ruiz Pérez

most relevant publications
  • Tomé-Carneiro J, Crespo MC, Iglesias-Gutierrez E, Martín R, Gil-Zamorano J, Tomas-Zapico C, Burgos-Ramos E, Correa C, Gómez-Coronado D, Lasunción MA, Herrera E, Visioli F, Dávalos A. Hydroxytyrosol supplementation modulates the expression of miRNAs in rodents and in humans. J Nutr Biochem. 2016 Aug;34:146-55.
  • Crespo MC, Tomé-Carneiro J, Gómez-Coronado D, Burgos- Ramos E, García-Serrano A, Martín-Hernández R, Baliyan S, Fontecha J, Venero C, Dávalos A, Visioli F. Modulation of miRNA expression in aged rat hippocampus by buttermilk and krill oil. Sci Rep. 2018 Mar 5;8(1):3993.
  • Spreafico F, Sales RC, Gil-Zamorano J, Medeiros PDC, Latasa MJ, Lima MR, de Souza SAL, Martin-Hernández R, Gómez-Coronado D, Iglesias-Gutierrez E, Mantilla-Escalante DC, das Graças Tavares do Carmo M, Dávalos A. Dietary supplementation with hybrid palm oil alters liver function in the common Marmoset. Sci Rep. 2018 Feb 9;8(1):2765.
  • Tomé-Carneiro J, Fernández-Alonso N, Tomás-Zapico C, Visioli F, Iglesias-Gutierrez E, Dávalos A. Breast milk microRNAs harsh journey towards potential effects in infant development and maturation. Lipid encapsulation can help. Pharmacol Res. 2018 Apr 5;132:21-32.
  • Martín-Hernández R, Reglero G, Dávalos A. Data mining of nutrigenomics experiments: identification of a cancer protective gene signature. J Funct Foods. 2018;42:380-386.
main research grants

Principal Investigator: Alberto Dávalos
Project Title: Precision nutrition and physical exercise as modulators of human epigenome in disorders of dietary excess (Nutri-Epigen)
Date: 2018-2019
Funded by: Agencia Estatal de Investigación. Ministerio de Economía, Industria y Competitividad (AGL2017-90623-REDT)

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Principal Investigator: Alberto Dávalos
Project Title: Modulation of exosomes that transport miRNAs and lncRNAs for intercelular communication as therapeutic tool to treat dyslipidemia (ExoRNAs)
Date: 2017-2020
Funded by: Fundación Ramón Areces (CIVP18A38889)

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Principal Investigator: Alberto Dávalos
Project Title: Therapeutic modulation of noncoding RNAs through dietary food bioactive compounds: impact on the physiophatological regulation of intestinal lipid metabolism (Intesti-nAhRuNg)
Date: 2017-2019
Funded by: Agencia Estatal de Investigación. Ministerio de Economía, Industria y Competitividad (AGL2016-78922-R)

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Principal Investigator: Rodriguez Canul, R del P.
Participant Investigator:Alberto Dávalos
Project Title: Anti-inflammatory and healing activity of sea cucumber (Isostichopus badionotus) in a mouse model: characterization of its pharmacological activity and molecular mechanism (Intesti-nAhRuNg)
Date: 2014-2017
Funded by: Consejo Nacional de Ciencia y Tecnologia (Conacyt), Mexico. (221734)

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Principal Investigator: Maria das Graças Tavares do Carmo
Participant Investigator:Alberto Dávalos
Project Title: Cardiovascular Disorders and Nutrigenomics: relationship between miRNAs and dietary fatty acids in the control of lipid metabolism
Date: 2014-2015
Funded by: FAPERJ - Fundação Carlos Chagas Filho de Amparo à Pesquisa do Estado do Rio de Janeiro (Edital FAPERJ N.º 32/2013)

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