Functional foods present a constantly growing research field, interrelating genomics, epidemiology and clinical investigations, followed by increased interest from the public and food supplement industry. As a matter of fact, the outcome of the implementation of functional foods is now amenable to be assessed by employing many of the most recent diagnostic tools.
Nutrigenomics is a relatively new discipline, which studies the genetic and epigenetic interplay with a nutrient or its functional component(s) in order to bring about a phenotypic modification of key cellular functions, such as, cell metabolism, differentiation or apoptosis. This represents one of the most expanding fields of research to unveil the health benefits of functional foods and their bioactive moieties which cannot be differentiated, as it happens in synthetic molecules devised by pharmaceutical industries.
Within this scenario, a specific functional food, i.e. fermented papaya preparation, coming from a controlled bio-fermentation process of papaya, is herewith reported and scientifically backed up by several experimental models and properly-designed clinical protocols.
The promising clinical health benefits provided by fermented papaya preparation are also discussed under the viewpoint of nutrigenomic mechanism understanding, and a significant antioxidant and effective transcriptomic property is described while ongoing investigations are warranted.
In general, this specific fermented papaya preparation represents a functional food, which closely meets the novel criteria of the new nutrigenomic-oriented strategic approach of preventive medicine, aimed to reduce the burden of chronic illnesses, while also offering potential adjuvant benefits within drugs regimens.