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Genetic profiling from a simple cheek swab can be a very useful tool. In combination with a client's lifestyle and metabolic factors, genetic tests give practitioners more insight into treating their client's as individuals. A person's genetic profile is part of what makes us unique. Because of this biochemical individuality we can, from the results of genetic evaluation and SNP (single nucleotide polymorphisms') analysis and with an understanding of metabolic pathways and biochemistry, it is possible to make recommendations for specific nutritional and skin care products for that person.
The specific SNP's chosen are related to the relative biochemical efficiency of one's genes and their product proteins that occur at relatively high frequencies. They are linked to metabolic pathways where specific compensatory supplementation can be defined. Listed below is a summary of the SNP's used for this exciting new and non-invasive testing.
- SNP 1: Vitamin D Receptor: Our bone strength is influenced by this gene. A 1994 study shows that this gene accounts for 75% of the genetic influence on bone density [Morrisonh NA et al]. Individuals with an imbalanced SNP 1 generally tend to have lower bone mineral density than those without these variations [Thakkinstan A et al, Valdivielso JM, 2004]
- SNP2: Microsomal Epoxide Hydrolase: An epoxide is a highly reactive foreign environmental toxin. These epoxides normally arevdetoxified through this EPHX gene. If an individual has a SNP2 imbalance, they tend to have more difficulty in detoxifing these harmful substances thus potentially causing damage to the cells [Morisseau C, 2005]
- SNP3 NQO1 (Coenzyme Q10 Reductase): Free radicals cause aging! CoQ10 reductase (NQO1) has been shown to convert CoQ10 (ubiquinone) to its reduced form ubiquinol which scavenges the free radicals in our mitochondria [Hosoe K et al,2007]. Individuals with this SNP3 tend to have lower levels of this antioxidant that normally would detoxify free radicals resulting in more free radical damage.
- SNP4: SOD2: Superoxide Dismutase (SOD) is the gene that is the first line of defense against one specific free radical-superoxide [Robinson BH, 1998. It has been shown to be the only enzyme in the mitochondria that can neutralize superoxide [Bandy B, 1990]. Individuals with this SNP may have more oxidative stress thus causing aging and possible dis-ease [Bandy B, 1990].
- SNP5: GPX1 (Glutathione Peroxidase 1): This enzyme specifically scavenges hydrogen peroxide, a reactive oxygen species (ROS). GPX1 is a selenoprotein which incorporates selenium into its protein structure. How much GPX1 an individual produces is dependent on their selenium level [Rayman MP, 2005]. People who have this SNP5 tend to utilize less selenium which means they need to supplement with more selenium than individuals who don't have the SNP5. This enzyme is needed to protect hydrogen peroxide-sensitive tissues, particularly lung and breast tissues [Hu YJ,2003,2005;Ratnasinghe D et al,2000; Moscow J.A.,1994].
- SNP6: MMP1 (Matrix Metalloproteinase): MMP1, is known as collagenase which degrades collagen. Collagen is the main component of cartilage, ligaments, tendons and bone. Individuals with this SNP6 produce too much collagenase, which may result in collagen breakdown and possible bone and joint issues [Cunnane G, 2001; DÖrr S et al, 2004].
- SNP7: MTRR (Methionine Synthase Reductase): Homocysteine is a metabolite of methionine, an amino acid which has been shown to protect the cardiovascular system [Refsum H et al,1998; Eikelboom J et al, 1999]. MTRR transforms homocysteine back to methionine or cysteine. Individuals with the SNP7 gene have the inability to clear homocysteine from their blood.
- SNP8; TNF (Tumor Necrosis Factor): TNF is a cytokine which is a chemical messenger of the immune system that helps with reducing inflammation. Individuals with this SNP8 tend to have an over-reactive inflammatory mechanism resulting in affecting the joints, brain, lungs and heart [Lee et al, 2007; alvarez V et al, 2002; Witte JS etal, 2002; Elahi MM et al, 2007].
- SNP9: MTHFR (Methylene Tetrahydrofolate Reductase): This enzyme also is responsible for reducing blood levels of homocysteine. Again, those with this SNP8 cannot decrease high levels of homocysteine, especially those who also have low levels of folate [Frosst P et al,1995; Jacques PF et al, 1996].
- SNP10: PON1 (Paraxonase 1): This enzyme attaches itself to high-density lipoprotein (HDL), which protects the HDL and LDL (low-density lipoprotein) from oxidation [Aviram M et al, 1998]. Since the SNPs in PON1 are common, blood levels of PON1 can vary by a factor of 10-40 fold among individuals [Garin et al, 1997,1999; Humbert R et al, 1993]. Therefore, individuals with this SNP10 usually have higher levels of oxidized LDL which affects cardiovascular health [Robertson KS et al, 2003; Voetsch B et al, 2004].
- SNP11: CYP11B2 (Aldosterone Synthase): The CYP11B2 gene encodes an enzyme, aldosterone synthase, which helps regulate blood pressure. A SNP11 in the CYP11B2 will decrease the ability of the blood vessels to constrict and relax especially when more blood flow is needed, as in exercising. This inability of vessel response may set the stage for cardiovascular issues [Hautanen A et al, 1999).
- SNP12: APOB (Apolipoprotein B): Apolipoproteins make up the protein part of lipoproteins. The Apolipoprotein B (ApoB) constitutes the protein component of LDL but without ApoB, LDL cannot form. People with SNPS on the ApoB gene have higher ApoB levels resulting in increased total cholesterol, LDL cholesterol, and triglycerides [Benn M et al, 2005; Talmud PJ et al, 1987; Law A et al, 1986; Hegele RA et al, 1986] as well as impaired glucose tolerance [Bentzen J et al, 2003] and increased blood lipid responses after meals [Moreno-Luna R et al, 2007]