Multi-Organ Nutrigenomic Effects of Dietary Grapes in a Mouse Model

Author Department


Document Type

Article, Peer-reviewed

Publication Date



As a whole food, the potential health benefits of table grapes have been widely studied. Some individual constituents have garnered great attention, particularly resveratrol, but normal quantities in the diet are meniscal. On the other hand, the grape contains hundreds of compounds, many of which have antioxidant potential. Nonetheless, the achievement of serum or tissue concentrations of grape antioxidants sufficient to mediate a direct quenching effect is not likely, which supports the idea of biological responses being mediated by an indirect catalytic-type response. We demonstrate herein with Hsd:ICR (CD-1® Outbred, 18-24 g, 3-4 weeks old, female) mice that supplementation of a semi-synthetic diet with a grape surrogate, equivalent to the human consumption of 2.5 servings per day for 12 months, modulates gene expression in the liver, kidney, colon, and ovary. As might be expected when sampling changes in a pool of over 35,000 genes, there are numerous functional implications. Analysis of some specific differentially expressed genes suggests the potential of grape consumption to bolster metabolic detoxification and regulation of reactive oxygen species in the liver, cellular metabolism, and anti-inflammatory activity in the ovary and kidney. In the colon, the data suggest anti-inflammatory activity, suppression of mitochondrial dysfunction, and maintaining homeostasis. Pathway analysis reveals a combination of up- and down-regulation in the target tissues, primarily up-regulated in the kidney and down-regulated in the ovary. More broadly, based on these data, it seems logical to conclude that grape consumption leads to modulation of gene expression throughout the body, the consequence of which may help to explain the broad array of activities demonstrated in diverse tissues such as the brain, heart, eye, bladder, and colon. In addition, this work further supports the profound impact of nutrigenomics on mammalian phenotypic expression.

Keywords: colon; dietary influence on phenotype; differentially expressed genes; kidney; liver; ovary; pathway analysis.