U.S. Department of Health and Human Services

Nutrient Metabolism, Status, and Assessment

The Nutrient Metabolism, Status, and Assessment program supports basic and clinical studies related to the absorption, metabolism, bioavailability, and requirements of nutrients and other dietary components.  This includes research on processes at the organ, cellular, and subcellular levels in normal and diseased states.  Suitable studies include those that explore how the nutritional status of an organism, such as over-nutrition and under-nutrition, affects physiological and metabolic functions contributing to the pathophysiology of diseases of interest to the NIDDK.  Specific areas of interest include the role of gut-brain signals in nutrient sensing; mechanisms of action/interaction of nutrients within the body; the process of food digestion in the gastrointestinal tract; and the absorption and transport of water, ions, sugars, amino acids/peptides, lipids, vitamins, minerals, and other macromolecules and bioactive components.  Other supported studies include those that explore modifications of nutrient metabolism and/or status due to genetic variation, altered gut barrier function, and/or in response to stress, circadian and diurnal variations, drug use, toxicants, bariatric surgery and physical activity in health and disease.  The program also supports studies that explore how dietary modifications affect gene regulation and expression at the transcriptional, translational, epigenetic, and functional level, including relevant nutrigenetic and nutrigenomic approaches.

Appropriate studies explore the impact of dietary modification on the human gut microbiome and/or dysregulation of gut microbiome on nutrient absorption, gut barrier function, and permeability and metabolism.  Mechanistic studies that explore the role of prebiotic and probiotic metabolism on microbiome compositional and functional changes and host physiology are also appropriate.

This program also supports studies that explore mathematical models contributing to the understanding of whole-body energy balance and metabolism, and of metabolic fluxes in cells, tissues, and organs.  A particular focus of interest is on models that allow the integration of data gained from a variety of technological approaches, such as tracer studies, calorimetry, plasma hormone/cytokines, metabolomics, genomics, epigenomics, and proteomics, and on those models that would be of clinical utility, including prediction of plasma glucose levels in diabetes, nutritional partitioning, nutritional status, and weight management.

The program supports research on specific metabolic considerations related to alternative forms of nutrient delivery and use, such as total parenteral and enteral nutrition.  Other supported studies involve research for improving methods to determine dietary intake and compliance, including dietary recall methodologies and questionnaires; novel approaches for collecting information on dietary intake, identification and development of biomarkers of intake and exposure; and the development of methods and assays for assessing nutritional status and for determining specific nutritional requirements in health and disease.​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​


 NIDDK Staff

Mary Evans, Ph.D.Multi-center Clinical Studies in Nutrition & Obesity; Nutrition Obesity Research Centers; Diet & Physical Activity Assessment Methodology
Padma Maruvada, Ph.D.Nutrient Metabolism; Clinical Obesity and Nutrition


 Related Funding Opportunities

Posted DateTitleFull Announcement
2/1/2017Development of Highly Innovative Tools and Technology for Analysis of Single Cells (STTR) (R41/R42) (Summary) PA-17-148
2/1/2017Development of Highly Innovative Tools and Technology for Analysis of Single Cells (SBIR) (R43/R44) (Summary) PA-17-147
1/24/2017Lead Optimization and Preclinical Development of Therapeutic Candidates for Diseases of Interest to the NIDDK (R43/R44) (Summary) PA-17-130
1/24/2017Lead Optimization and Preclinical Development of Therapeutic Candidates for Diseases of Interest to the NIDDK (R41/R42) (Summary) PA-17-131
1/17/2017Biomarkers for Diabetes, Digestive, Kidney and Urologic Diseases Using Biosamples from the NIDDK Repository (R01) (Summary) PAR-17-123
View More Funding Opportunities

The resources listed below include reagents, data, protocols, etc. If you would like to utilize any of these resources, contact the person associated with the resource.


 Research Resources

Resource NameDescription
Mouse Metabolic Phenotyping Centers

The MMPC is a National Institutes of Health-sponsored resource that provides experimental testing services to scientists studying diabetes, obesity, diabetic complications, and other metabolic diseases in mice.

Acute Liver Failure Study Group
The Acute Liver Failure Study Group is collecting biosamples and information on the natural history, causes and outcomes of Acute Liver Failure in the United States. In addition to the database, a clinical trial conducted to test whether the drug…
Evaluating Predictors and Interventions in Sphincter of Oddi Dysfunction

The EPISOD study is a prospective, double-blind, randomized, sham-controlled, multi-center clinical trial. The EPISOD study enrolls subjects who have received a prior cholecystectomy and are diagnosed with the clinical syndrome of Sphincter of Oddi…

Inflammatory Bowel Disease Genetic Consortium

The NIDDK Inflammatory Bowel Disease Genetics Consortium (IBDGC) consists of investigators from seven sites in the U.S. and Canada, who have recruited a large sample of inflammatory bowel disease patients, their relatives, and control subjects. All…

Efficacy and Mechanisms of Glutamine Dipeptide in the Surgical Intensive Care Unit

The GLND trial is a multi-center, double-blind, placebo-controlled, intent-to-treat Phase III trial, designed to determine the effect of parenteral glutamine (GLN) dipeptide on important clinical outcomes in patients requiring surgical intensive care…

View Additional Research Resources


 NIDDK Active Trials in Digestive Disease

View related clinical trials from ClinicalTrials.gov.


 Related Study Sections

Study sections conduct initial peer review of applications in a designated scientific area. View related study sections from the NIH's Center for Scientific Review.