IMDEA Food Institute carries out its work in a context of five research lines of excellence:
Nutritional Genomics of Cardiovascular Disease and Obesity
This research line is focused on the study of the effect of diet on the expression of relevant microRNAs in energy metabolism with special emphasis on those related to cardiovascular (CVD) disease and obesity. MicroRNAs have recently emerged as important modulators of molecular pathways with direct association to CVD and obesity. It is therefore important to conduct studies directed at discovering the role of microRNAs in the modulation of these pathways. Moreover, diet is the principal modifiable factor with respect to cardiovascular risk. The group's work pays particular attention to the components of the Mediterranean diet, (DM) the effect of which on microRNAs may explain part of the heart-healthy effects attributed to the diet. The DM is a tool with great potential for preventing CVD that, moreover, is within reach of the Spanish population. Within the context of microRNAs, this group studies aspects of CVD and obesity as chronobiology, the microbiota or the neurobiological and behavioral role of nutrition. The role of circulating microRNAs as biomarkers of CVD and healthy diet is also studied.
Molecular Oncology and Nutritional Genomics of Cancer
This line targets cancer-inflammation research, the study of cancer cell metabolism, the metabolic link between obesity, diabetes and cancer and designing customized nutritional strategies for the prevention and therapy of cancer. Alterations in cell signaling pathways at the genomic, metabolic, cellular and systemic level, including control of the homeostatic function are studied.
The efforts of the research program will initially focus on cardiovascular disease, obesity and cancer, and diseases associated with aging.
Laboratory of Functional Foods
Nutritional profiles and claims offer great added value to food products and they are currently rarely constructed based on ACEs. Rather, they are based on epidemiological observations or in vitro experiments. While ACEs are in fact the standard of Pharmacology since they are the only way of providing reliable and evidence-based data, they are difficult to apply to nutrition-based environments.
Disorders of Lipid Metabolism and Molecular Nutrition
Las enfermedades cardiometabólicas son las principales causas de mortalidad en el mundo y el exceso en la dieta es una de las principales causas de estas enfermedades humanas relacionadas con nuestro estilo de vida moderno.
El objetivo de esta línea es entender cómo diferentes RNAs no codificantes regulan el metabolismo de los lípidos durante estados de salud y enfermedad, desarrollando nuevas estrategias, tanto farmacológicas como dietéticas, para modular su función. La modulación farmacológica o dietética de la actividad de RNAs no codificantes que regulan el metabolismo de lípidos en última instancia, conduce a la prevención o el tratamiento de enfermedades cardiometabólicas.
Production and Development of Foods for Health
The main of this line purpose is to connect with the food industry by establishing a bridge between molecular mechanistic research and the market by means of the development of food products for specific health use that either respond to the results generated by the basic lines of the Institute or are validated using the scientific tools of said lines.
Bioactive Products and Metabolic Syndrome Group
This line studies the mechanism of action of bioactive products, the molecular mechanism of which is unknown, with indications of metabolic effectiveness. This line also identifies compounds which are present in the diet with bioactive effects unkown up until now and are useful in the prevention and treatment of metabolic syndrome and associate diseases.