Dragan Milenkovic, Ph.D.

Dragan Milenkovic

Position Title
Associate Researcher

  • B.S., Cell Biology and Physiology, University of Tours and University of Paris 7, France
  • M.D., Genome Analyses and Molecular Modeling (Genetics / Bioinformatics), University of Paris 7, France
  • Ph.D., Molecular Genetics, University of Versailles St-Quentin-en-Yvelines, France
Research Interests

Dr. Milenkovic’s research aims to demonstrate impact of nutrients on development and prevention of cardiovascular and neurodegenerative diseases and to identify molecular and cellular mechanisms of actions underlying observed effects using multi-genomic and bioinformatic approaches. In the last 10 years his research has been particularly focused on protective effects of bioactive plant compounds, mainly polyphenols. His projects uses translational research approach involving in-vitro studies, animal models and clinical trials. He uses multi-omics and systems biology to integrate results from genomics studies, including modifications in expression of gene (protein coding and non-coding like microRNAs, long non-coding RNAs, short non-coding RNAs), protein, epigenetics as well as in-silico docking studies to evaluate interaction between polyphenol metabolites and cell signalling proteins.

Selected Publications:

For a full publications record click here: (National Library of Medicine and Google Scholar)

Nuthikattu S, Milenkovic D, Norman JE, Rutledge J, Villablanca A. Inhibition of Soluble Epoxide Hydrolase Is Protective against the Multiomic Effects of a High Glycemic Diet on Brain Microvascular Inflammation and Cognitive Dysfunction. Nutrients2021 Nov 1;13(11). doi: 10.3390/nu13113913. PubMed PMID: 34836168; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC8622784.

Milenkovic D, Krga I, Dinel AL, Morand C, Laye S, Castanon N. Nutrigenomic modification induced by anthocyanin-rich bilberry extract in the hippocampus of ApoE-/-mice. Journal of Functional Foods 85, 104609

Monfoulet LE, Ruskovska T, Ajdžanović V, Havlik J, Vauzour D, Bayram B, Krga I, Corral-Jara KF, Kistanova E, Abadjieva D, Massaro M, Scoditti E, Deligiannidou E, Kontogiorgis C, Arola-Arnal A, van Schothorst EM, Morand C, Milenkovic DMolecular Determinants of the Cardiometabolic Improvements of Dietary Flavanols Identified by an Integrative Analysis of Nutrigenomic Data from a Systematic Review of Animal Studies. Mol Nutr Food Res2021 Aug;65(16):e2100227. doi: 10.1002/mnfr.202100227. Epub 2021 Jul 2. PubMed PMID: 34048642.

Ruskovska T, Budić-Leto I, Corral-Jara KF, Ajdžanović V, Arola-Arnal A, Bravo FI, Deligiannidou GE, Havlik J, Janeva M, Kistanova E, Kontogiorgis C, Krga I, Massaro M, Miler M, Milosevic V, Morand C, Scoditti E, Suárez M, Vauzour D, Milenkovic DSystematic Bioinformatic Analyses of Nutrigenomic Modifications by Polyphenols Associated with Cardiometabolic Health in Humans-Evidence from Targeted Nutrigenomic Studies. Nutrients2021 Jul 6;13(7). doi: 10.3390/nu13072326. PubMed PMID: 34371836; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC8308901.

Corral-Jara KF, Nuthikattu S, Rutledge J, Villablanca A, Morand C, Schroeter H, Milenkovic DIntegrated Multi-Omic Analyses of the Genomic Modifications by Gut Microbiome-Derived Metabolites of Epicatechin, 5-(4'-Hydroxyphenyl)-γ-Valerolactone, in TNFalpha-Stimulated Primary Human Brain Microvascular Endothelial Cells. Front Neurosci2021;15:622640. doi: 10.3389/fnins.2021.622640. eCollection 2021. PubMed PMID: 33841078; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC8033932.

Milenkovic D, Paslawski R, Gomulkiewicz A, Gladine C, Janczak D, Grzegorek I, Jablonska K, Drozdz K, Chmielewska M, Piotrowska A, Janiszewski A, Dziegiel P, Mazur A, Paslawska U, Szuba A. Alterations of aorta intima and media transcriptome in swine fed high-fat diet over 1-year follow-up period and of the switch to normal diet. Nutr Metab Cardiovasc Dis2020 Jun 25;30(7):1201-1215. doi: 10.1016/j.numecd.2020.04.007. Epub 2020 Apr 20. PubMed PMID: 32482453.

Duarte IAE, Milenkovic D, Borges TKDS, Rosa AJM, Morand C, Oliveira LL, Costa AM. Acute Effects of the Consumption of Passiflora setacea Juice on Metabolic Risk Factors and Gene Expression Profile in Humans. Nutrients2020 Apr 16;12(4). doi: 10.3390/nu12041104. PubMed PMID: 32316129; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC7231153.

Milenkovic D, Declerck K, Guttman Y, Kerem Z, Claude S, Weseler AR, Bast A, Schroeter H, Morand C, Vanden Berghe W. (-)-Epicatechin metabolites promote vascular health through epigenetic reprogramming of endothelial-immune cell signaling and reversing systemic low-grade inflammation.Biochem Pharmacol2020 Mar;173:113699. doi: 10.1016/j.bcp.2019.113699. Epub 2019 Nov 20. PubMed PMID: 31756325.

Fidélix M, Milenkovic D, Sivieri K, Cesar T. Microbiota modulation and effects on metabolic biomarkers by orange juice: a controlled clinical trial. Food Funct2020 Feb 26;11(2):1599-1610. doi: 10.1039/c9fo02623a. PubMed PMID: 32016250.

Gibney ER, Milenkovic D, Combet E, Ruskovska T, Greyling A, González-Sarrías A, de Roos B, Tomás-Barberán F, Morand C, Rodriguez-Mateos A. Factors influencing the cardiometabolic response to (poly)phenols and phytosterols: a review of the COST Action POSITIVe activities. Eur J Nutr2019 Nov;58(Suppl 2):37-47. doi: 10.1007/s00394-019-02066-6. Epub 2019 Sep 6. Review. PubMed PMID: 31492975; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC6851211.

Milenkovic D, Berghe WV, Morand C, Claude S, van de Sandt A, Gorressen S, Monfoulet LE, Chirumamilla CS, Declerck K, Szic KSV, Lahtela-Kakkonen M, Gerhauser C, Merx MW, Kelm M. A systems biology network analysis of nutri(epi)genomic changes in endothelial cells exposed to epicatechin metabolites. Sci Rep.2018 Oct 19;8(1):15487. doi: 10.1038/s41598-018-33959-x. PubMed PMID: 30341379; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC6195584.

Krga I, Tamaian R, Mercier S, Boby C, Monfoulet LE, Glibetic M, Morand C, Milenkovic DAnthocyanins and their gut metabolites attenuate monocyte adhesion and transendothelial migration through nutrigenomic mechanisms regulating endothelial cell permeability. Free Radic Biol Med2018 Aug 20;124:364-379. doi: 10.1016/j.freeradbiomed.2018.06.027. Epub 2018 Jun 28. PubMed PMID: 29964169.

Barber-Chamoux N, Milenkovic D, Verny MA, Habauzit V, Pereira B, Lambert C, Richard D, Boby C, Mazur A, Lusson JR, Dubray C, Morand C. Substantial Variability Across Individuals in the Vascular and Nutrigenomic Response to an Acute Intake of Curcumin: A Randomized Controlled Trial. Mol Nutr Food Res2018 Mar;62(5). doi: 10.1002/mnfr.201700418. Epub 2018 Feb 12. PubMed PMID: 29034576.

Yokoyama AS, Dunaway K, Rutkowsky J, Rutledge JC, Milenkovic DChronic consumption of a western diet modifies the DNA methylation profile in the frontal cortex of mice. Food Funct2018 Feb 21;9(2):1187-1198. doi: 10.1039/c7fo01602f. PubMed PMID: 29372223; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC5821526.

Milenkovic D, Morand C, Cassidy A, Konic-Ristic A, Tomás-Barberán F, Ordovas JM, Kroon P, De Caterina R, Rodriguez-Mateos A. Interindividual Variability in Biomarkers of Cardiometabolic Health after Consumption of Major Plant-Food Bioactive Compounds and the Determinants Involved. Adv Nutr2017 Jul;8(4):558-570. doi: 10.3945/an.116.013623. Print 2017 Jul. Review. PubMed PMID: 28710143; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC5502866.

Krga I, Monfoulet LE, Konic-Ristic A, Mercier S, Glibetic M, Morand C, Milenkovic DAnthocyanins and their gut metabolites reduce the adhesion of monocyte to TNFα-activated endothelial cells at physiologically relevant concentrations. Arch Biochem Biophys2016 Jun 1;599:51-9. doi: 10.1016/j.abb.2016.02.006. Epub 2016 Feb 10. PubMed PMID: 26873533.

Habauzit V, Verny MA, Milenkovic D, Barber-Chamoux N, Mazur A, Dubray C, Morand C. Flavanones protect from arterial stiffness in postmenopausal women consuming grapefruit juice for 6 mo: a randomized, controlled, crossover trial. Am J Clin Nutr2015 Jul;102(1):66-74. doi: 10.3945/ajcn.114.104646. Epub 2015 May 27. PubMed PMID: 26016866.

Claude S, Boby C, Rodriguez-Mateos A, Spencer JP, Gérard N, Morand C, Milenkovic DFlavanol metabolites reduce monocyte adhesion to endothelial cells through modulation of expression of genes via p38-MAPK and p65-Nf-kB pathways. Mol Nutr Food Res2014 May;58(5):1016-27. doi: 10.1002/mnfr.201300658. Epub 2014 Jan 15. PubMed PMID: 24425450.

Milenkovic D, Jude B, Morand C. miRNA as molecular target of polyphenols underlying their biological effects. Free Radic Biol Med2013 Sep;64:40-51. doi: 10.1016/j.freeradbiomed.2013.05.046. Epub 2013 Jun 7. Review. PubMed PMID: 23751562.

Coban D, Milenkovic D, Chanet A, Khallou-Laschet J, Sabbe L, Palagani A, Vanden Berghe W, Mazur A, Morand C. Dietary curcumin inhibits atherosclerosis by affecting the expression of genes involved in leukocyte adhesion and transendothelial migration. Mol Nutr Food Res2012 Aug;56(8):1270-81. doi: 10.1002/mnfr.201100818. Epub 2012 Jul 2. PubMed PMID: 22753158.

Milenkovic D, Deval C, Gouranton E, Landrier JF, Scalbert A, Morand C, Mazur A. Modulation of miRNA expression by dietary polyphenols in apoE deficient mice: a new mechanism of the action of polyphenols.PLoS One2012;7(1):e29837. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0029837. Epub 2012 Jan 10. PubMed PMID: 22253797; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC3254631.

Mauray A, Felgines C, Morand C, Mazur A, Scalbert A, Milenkovic DNutrigenomic analysis of the protective effects of bilberry anthocyanin-rich extract in apo E-deficient mice. Genes Nutr2010 Dec;5(4):343-53. doi: 10.1007/s12263-010-0171-0. Epub 2010 Mar 1. PubMed PMID: 21189870; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC2989366.

Clop A, Marcq F, Takeda H, Pirottin D, Tordoir X, Bibé B, Bouix J, Caiment F, Elsen JM, Eychenne F, Larzul C, Laville E, Meish F, Milenkovic D, Tobin J, Charlier C, Georges M. A mutation creating a potential illegitimate microRNA target site in the myostatin gene affects muscularity in sheep. Nat Genet2006 Jul;38(7):813-8. doi: 10.1038/ng1810. Epub 2006 Jun 4. PubMed PMID: 16751773.

Milenkovic D, Chaffaux S, Taourit S, Guérin G. A mutation in the LAMC2 gene causes the Herlitz junctional epidermolysis bullosa (H-JEB) in two French draft horse breeds. Genet Sel Evol2003 Mar-Apr;35(2):249-56. doi: 10.1186/1297-9686-35-2-249. PubMed PMID: 12633536; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC2732698.

Milenkovic D, Oustry-Vaiman A, Lear TL, Billault A, Mariat D, Piumi F, Schibler L, Cribiu E, Guérin G.Cytogenetic localization of 136 genes in the horse: comparative mapping with the human genome. Mamm Genome2002 Sep;13(9):524-34. doi: 10.1007/s00335-001-2137-4. PubMed PMID: 12370783.