German, J B, et al., Metabolomics and Individual Metabolic Assessment: The Next Great Challenge for Nutrition. J Nutr, 2002. 132(9): 2486-7.
The human genome has arrived. The technologies of global transcriptional analysis are building the greatest knowledge base in the history of biological science and the world is waiting impatiently for the benefits that this knowledge will provide. Discouragingly for nutrition, in the current public health environment, knowledge from genomics alone will not provide dramatic benefits to quality of life for most people
immediately. The genome and its application through functional genomics are building knowledge most rapidly to identify the causes and complications of diseases and resolve them through therapeutic intervention. Nutrition, however, has a broader and more comprehensive mandate than ameliorating disease. Nutrition now arrives at the genomic era with the goal to go beyond curing disease in afflicted individuals, to preventing disease and improving health of entire populations. Nevertheless, nutrition can not succeed in delivering on this bold promise with genomics (the study of entire genomes) as the only tool in its kit.