Microbiome Extra

News about the Microbiome

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MultiYo's Microbiome Blog

An ongoing series of informational entries on the Microbiome by the makers of 

MultiYo - The Microbiome Yogurt

1 Nov 2018

“Type 1 diabetes (T1D) is an autoimmune disease that targets pancreatic islet beta cells and incorporates genetic and environmental factors, including complex genetic elements, patient exposures and the gut microbiome. Viral infections5 and broader gut dysbioses6 have been identified as potential causes or contributing factors.” It goes on to discuss the investigation of the infant microbiome and its role in the finely tuned balance of metabolic interactions with breast milk, along with the disruptive effects of antibiotics on the early life microbiome.'

1 Nov 2018

“The trillion symbiotic microorganisms inhabiting the mammalian gastrointestinal tract (i.e., the microbiota) influence numerous aspects of host physiology. In this study we review the evidence linking perturbations of the gut microbiome to pancreatic autoimmunity.”

1 Nov 2018

“Microbiome-wide association studies have established that numerous diseases are associated with changes in the microbiota.”

1 Nov 2018

“Probiotic nutrition is frequently claimed to improve human health. In particular, live probiotic bacteria obtained with food are thought to reduce intestinal colonization by pathogens, and thus to reduce susceptibility to infection. However, the mechanisms that underlie these effects remain poorly understood. Here we report that the consumption of probiotic Bacillus bacteria comprehensively abolished colonization by the dangerous pathogen Staphylococcus aureus in a rural Thai population. Our study presents a detailed molecular mechanism that underlines the importance of probiotic nutrition in reducing infectious disease.”

1 Nov 2018

"Bacteria from bad gums could be initiating the auto-immune response that causes the joint pain and swelling associated with RA, researchers from the Leeds Biomedical Research Centre have found."

1 Nov 2018

"The importance of the gut microbiome for bone metabolism in mice has recently been demonstrated, but no studies are available in humans. Lactobacillus reuteri ATCCPTA 6475 (L. reuteri 6475) has been reported to increase bone mineral density (BMD) in mice but its effect on the human skeleton is unknown. The objective of this trial was to investigate if L. reuteri 6475 affects bone loss in older women with low BMD."

1 Nov 2018

“Dysbiosis” in the gut microbiome has been implicated in auto-immune diseases, in inflammatory diseases, in some cancers and mental disorders. The only time we are alone is prior to birth. Then onwards we are colonized by innumerable number of bacteria acquired from the mother and the environment and by adulthood we have trillions of bacteria colonizing every surface of the body. In the adult gut the number increases to 1014 bacteria which weighs around 1.13 kg and is ten times more than the total number of cells in the human body (1013). Thus we are more bacteria than human. 

Ability of the gut microbiome to modulate the immune system is considered as an important reason for the diseased state.

The direct evidence that the microbiota are indeed the cause of the disease is strengthened by the pioneering studies on obesity in mice. Gut bacteria from fat mice when transplanted into genetically lean mice with no gut bacteria of their own, transform the lean mice into obese mice.

2 Nov 2018

"In line, there is preliminary evidence for gut bacteria to have beneficial effect on mood and anxiety, partly by affecting the activity of the vagus nerve. The vagus nerve represents the main component of the parasympathetic nervous system, which oversees a vast array of crucial bodily functions, including control of mood, immune response, digestion, and heart rate."

"It establishes one of the connections between the brain and the gastrointestinal tract and sends information about the state of the inner organs to the brain via afferent fibers."

5 Nov 2018

"The brain disease Parkinson's may actually start in the depths of the digestive system, US scientists say."

5 Nov 2018

"Recent dairy product studies have suggested that fermented rather than non-fermented dairy products might provide benefits on cardiovascular health, but the evidence is inconclusive. Therefore, we investigated whether fermented and non-fermented dairy products have distinct associations with the risk of incident CHD in a population with high dairy product intake. After adjusting for potential confounders, those in the highest (v. lowest) intake quartile of fermented dairy products had 27 % (95 % CI 5, 44; P-trend=0·02) lower risk of CHD."

5 Nov 2018

"Although not without exception, existing evidence from animal and human studies suggests a moderate cholesterol-lowering action of fermented dairy products. Mechanistically, fermented milk has been shown to cause an increase in human gut bacterial content. These bacteria, once resident in the large intestine, are believed to ferment food-derived indigestible carbohydrates."  The actions described in the article are proposed as contributing mechanisms to the association of fermented milk consumption with decreased circulating cholesterol concentrations.

13 Nov 2018

"We know the menagerie of microbes in the gut has powerful effects on our health. Could some of these same bacteria be making a home in our brains?"

13 Nov 2018

"Increased consumption of yogurt, but not of other dairy products, is associated with a lower CCA-IMT (carotid artery intima-media thickness), independent of other risk factors."

13 Nov 2018

"Hypertensive men and women who consumed ≥2 servings/week of yogurt, especially in the context of a healthy diet, were at lower risk for developing CardioVascular Disease."

13 Nov 2018

"The gastrointestinal (GI) tract performs key functions that regulate the relationship between the host and the microbiota. Research has shown numerous benefits of probiotic intake in the modulation of immune responses and human metabolic processes."

13 Nov 2018

"The popularity of fermented foods and beverages is due to their enhanced shelf-life, safety, functionality, sensory, and nutritional properties. The latter includes the presence of bioactive molecules, vitamins, and other constituents with increased availability due to the process of fermentation. Many fermented foods also contain live microorganisms that may improve gastrointestinal health and provide other health benefits, including lowering the risk of type two diabetes and cardiovascular diseases. The number of organisms in fermented foods can vary significantly, depending on how products were manufactured and processed, as well as conditions and duration of storage." 

"Although few specific recommendations and claim legislations for what constitutes a relevant dose exist, the findings from this survey revealed that many fermented foods are a good source of live lactic acid bacteria, including species that reportedly provide human health benefits."

13 Nov 2018

"In the past, the beneficial effects of fermented foods on health were unknown, and so people primarily used fermentation to preserve foods, enhance shelf life, and improve flavour. Fermented foods became an important part of the diet in many cultures, and over time fermentation has been associated with many health benefits. Because of this, the fermentation process and the resulting fermented products have recently attracted scientific interest. 

In addition, microorganisms contributing to the fermentation process have recently been associated with many health benefits, and so these microorganisms have become another focus of attention. Lactic acid bacteria (LAB) have been some of the most studied microorganisms. 

During fermentation, these bacteria synthesize vitamins and minerals, produce biologically active peptides with enzymes such as proteinase and peptidase, and remove some non-nutrients. Compounds known as biologically active peptides, which are produced by the bacteria responsible for fermentation, are also well known for their health benefits. 

Among these peptides, conjugated linoleic acids (CLA) have a blood pressure lowering effect, exopolysaccharides exhibit prebiotic properties, bacteriocins show anti-microbial effects, sphingolipids have anti-carcinogenic and anti-microbial properties, and bioactive peptides exhibit anti-oxidant, anti-microbial, opioid antagonist, anti-allergenic, and blood pressure lowering effects. 

As a result, fermented foods provide many health benefits such as anti-oxidant, anti-microbial, anti-fungal, anti-inflammatory, anti-diabetic and anti-atherosclerotic activity. However, some studies have shown no relationship between fermented foods and health benefits. Therefore, this paper aims to investigate the health effects of fermented foods."

13 Nov 2018

"The gut-brain axis facilitates a critical bidirectional link and communication between the brain and the gut. Recent studies have highlighted the significance of interactions in the gut-brain axis, with a particular focus on intestinal functions, the nervous system and the brain. Furthermore, researchers have examined the effects of the gut microbiome on mental health and psychiatric well-being. The present study reviewed published evidence to explore the concept of the gut-brain axis."

"Data obtained from previous studies showed that the gut-brain axis links various peripheral intestinal functions to brain centres through a broad range of processes and pathways, such as endocrine signalling and immune system activation. Researchers have found that the vagus nerve drives bidirectional communication between the various systems in the gut-brain axis. In humans, the signals are transmitted from the liminal environment to the central nervous system."

"The communication that occurs in the gut-brain axis can alter brain function and trigger various psychiatric conditions, such as schizophrenia and depression. Thus, elucidation of the gut-brain axis is critical for the management of certain psychiatric and mental disorders."

13 Nov 2018

"The number of bacterial cells living within the human body is approximately equal to, or greater than, the total number of human cells. This dynamic population of microorganisms, termed the human microbiota, resides mainly within the gastrointestinal tract. It is widely accepted that highly diverse and stable microbiota promote overall human health. Colonization of the gut with maladaptive and pathogenic microbiota, a state also known as dysbiosis, is associated with a variety of peripheral diseases ranging from type 2 diabetes mellitus to cardiovascular and inflammatory bowel disease. More recently, microbial dysbiosis has been associated with a number of brain pathologies, including autism spectrum disorder, Alzheimer's disease (AD), Parkinson's disease (PD), and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), suggesting a direct or indirect communication between intestinal bacteria and the central nervous system (CNS). 

In this review, we illustrate two pathways implicated in the crosstalk between gut microbiota and CNS involving 1) the vagus nerve and 2) transmission of signaling molecules through the circulatory system and across the blood-brain barrier (BBB). We summarize the available evidence of the specific changes in the intestinal microbiota, as well as microorganism-induced modifications to intestinal and BBB permeability, which have been linked to several neurodegenerative disorders including ALS, AD, and PD. Even though each of these diseases arises from unique pathogenetic mechanisms, all are characterized, at least in part, by chronic neuroinflammation. 

We provide an interpretation for the substantial evidence that healthy intestinal microbiota have the ability to positively regulate the neuroimmune responses in the CNS. Even though the evidence is mainly associative, it has been suggested that bacterial dysbiosis could contribute to an adverse neuroinflammatory state leading to increased risk of neurodegenerative diseases. Thus, developing strategies for regulating and maintaining healthy intestinal microbiota could be a valid approach for lowering individual risk and prevalence of neurodegenerative diseases."

13 Dec 2018

"Wang is now a professor of molecular and human genetics at Baylor College of Medicine in the US, where she’s been carrying out experiments into one of the most exciting new areas of medicine – our microbiome.

'Those are the little microorganisms living together with us, from the digestive tract inside our body to the skin outside our body,' she says. 'So, they’re everywhere.'

You can’t see it with the naked eye, but our microbiome is all over (and inside of) us. Most of it is bacteria, but it also contains fungi, viruses and other microbes, too. In the past, scientists haven’t given it much attention. But we now know it has a profound effect on our body. 

Recent studies show that our microbiome is as relevant to us as an additional organ might be. It can influence how we behave and even how well we respond to different medications.

'Sometimes [our microbiomes] make us sick, but on the other hand, they also play a very important role to keep us healthy,' says Wang."

26 Jan 2018

"Your body is full of microorganisms, or bacteria, that make up what’s called your microbiome — the vast, invisible community of microbes found in your body, most of them in your intestines.

And while you can’t see these microbes, they dominate your body. Turns out, you actually have more microbes in your body than human cells — the average person has around 30 trillion human cells — and 40 trillion microbes. All together, they weigh around three pounds, or about as much as your brain.

These microbes have control over you in more ways than scientists used to think. In the last two decades, microbes have been found to affect how you respond to stress, help you digest food, and fight disease and infection. They’re linked to inflammatory bowel disease, allergies, asthma and memory loss. They can even determine if you’re a mosquito magnet."

19 September 2019

“We know these microbes interact with the brain via the gut-brain axis, so could tweaking them improve mood and behaviour?" 

4 September 2019

Interesting article in New Scientist (4 Sept 2019) about the gut/brain connection via the vagus nerve. "Gut bacteria communicate with the brain in three different ways: they send signals up the vagus nerve directly to the brain; they influence immune cells in the gut, which produce a range of chemicals that affect the brain; and they produce chemicals that travel in the blood." "Gut bacteria can influence symptoms of depression, too." "Probiotics can significantly reduce your risk of antibiotic-associated diarrhoea, which affects about 30% of people."

24 September 2019

"Parents have long reported gut problems in children with autism. But a new treatment, Microbiota Transfer Therapy, is reporting remarkable results in reducing gut and debilitating autism symptoms." Essentially repopulating the gut with a better set of gut bacteria.