Jadranka Sertic

Jadranka Sertic

University of Zagreb, Croatia

Title: Contribution of gene variants and diet to obesity risk


Professor Jadranka Sertic graduated from the Faculty of Chemical Engineering and Biotechnology, University of Zagreb, then completed her master's degree and PhD at the Zagreb University School of Medicine. She then specialised in medical biochemistry and molecular genetics at the Max-Planck-Institute of Biology, Tübingen, from 1988-1990.Jadranka has published more than 100 original scientific papers and textbooks, and is a member or chairperson of many scientific committees, and she was member of the Croatian Ministry of Health National Health Council, and an EMQN national representative.She is the principal investigator of one and a collaborator in several national and international scientific projects investigating obesity, atherosclerosis and cardiocerebrovascular diseases. She is interested in laboratory medicine, and molecular-genetic and biochemical approaches to hereditary diseases. Find publications in Pubmed.


Obesity is a multifactorial disorder affected by genetic and dietary risk factors. Among gene variants found to be involved in body weight regulation and development of obesity, particular attention has been paid to polymorphisms in genes associated with obesity-related metabolic disorders. ESR-I, LPL, APO E, IL-6, ACE, AT1R and PPARG genetic polymorphic variants could represent predictive genetic risk markers for obesity-related metabolic disorders in young healthy subjects. Mediterranean type of diet is also an important protective factor against abdominal obesity. Adiponectin is linked to central obesity and ADIPOQ variants are promising markers for understanding the genetic base of obesity-related disorders. Analysis of adiponectin concentration and ADIPOQ - 11391G>A and -11377C>G gene variants may be clinically meaningful for estimation of MetS risk in a young population. 5-Hydroxytryptamine (5-HT, serotonin) plays an important role in the central nervous control of energy balance. It is involved in several biological processes including mood, appetite, sleep, libido, memory, and body weight regulation. Brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) is also currently recognized as an important participant in the regulation of food intake. A study was carried out to evaluate whether the 5-HTTLPR S/L and BDNF Val66Met gene variants are associated with obesity in a sample of adults. Significant gene-gene interactions were also observed. The role of polymorphisms and variant combinations could provide additional information that could be clinically meaningful for estimation of obesity and MetS risk, which points to the need for personalized behavioral recommendations to prevent chronic disorders.

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