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Nutrigenomics: A Context for Teaching Year 12-13 Biology

How does Nutrigenomics relate to what I'm teaching?

Nutrigenomics is the study of the response of humans to food and food components using genomics, proteomics and metabolomics approaches. The goal of nutrigenomics is to develop foods that can be matched to individual human genotypes to benefit the health of those individuals and enhance normal physiological processes. Nutrigenomics offers many topical and relevant context and examples for teaching in Year 12 and 13 Biology.

Year 13
Nutrigenomics Examples Year 13 Concepts

Metabolic pathways

Gene/Environment interactions


Lactase persistence

Gene expression

Control of gene expression


Crohns Disease

Gene/Environment interactions

Genome analysis

Biotechnological techniques

Folate and folic acid fortification

Contemporary biological issues

Gene Expression

Gene/Environment interactions

Year 12

Nutrigenomics Examples Year 12 Concepts
Lactase persistance



Protein Synthesis

Folic acid fortification
Applications of Biology

Resources to support the teaching using Nutrigenomics as context

  • Nutrigenomics in the Classroom. PowerPoint from the professional development workshop 16/03/10
  • Teacher Professional Development Workshop - a copy of the broadcast can be accessed here.
  • A background paper for students to use as an introduction to this context.

Useful Web Links


Research papers about nutrigenomics freely available online:

Zeisel, S. H., Freake, H. C., Bauman, D. E., Bier, D. M., Burrin, D. G., German, J. B., et al. (2005). The Nutritional Phenotype in the Age of Metabolomics. J Nutr., 135(7), 1613–1616.

Mead, M. N. (2007). Nutrigenomics: The Genome–Food Interface. Environ Health Perspect, 115(12), A582–A589.

Laursen, L. (2010). Interdisciplinary research: Big science at the table. [10.1038/468S2a. Nature, 468(7327), S2-S4].

Frood, A. (2010). Technology: A flavour of the future. [10.1038/468S21a. Nature, 468(7327), S21-S22.]

The Folate Debate

Research papers about the folate freely available online:

Kim, Y.-I. (2004). Will mandatory folic acid fortification prevent or promote cancer? Am J Clin Nutr, 80(5), 1123-1128.

Johnston, R. B. J. (2008). Will Increasing Folic Acid in Fortified Grain Products Further Reduce Neural Tube Defects without Causing Harm?: Consideration of the Evidence. Pediatric Research, 63(1), 2-8

Assessment Tasks

Assessment tasks for the following Achievement Standards are available by clicking on the links below.  They are in Adobe pdf format.  IF you would like the tasks in Microsoft Word format please email LENSciencehelp