Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Transplanting human gut bugs into mice helps understanding of metabolic system

22.05.2007
Bugs found in the guts of humans, which play an important part in people’s metabolic makeup, have been transplanted into mice to further understanding of the human and animal metabolic system, reveals a new study in the journal Molecular Systems Biology.

Bugs in the gut are known as gut microbes and they live symbiotically in human and animal bodies. The new study involved understanding the major role that gut microbes have in determining how the body absorbs fat and digests fibre, and their effects on metabolic pathways in the body.

The researchers, from Imperial College London and Nestlé Research Center, Lausanne, Switzerland, found that microbes affect the way fats are absorbed and metabolised, by affecting bile acids. Bile acids are made by the liver to allow emulsification of fats in the upper gut. The researchers found that gut microbes can change how effective this emulsification process is because they metabolise bile acids.

The bile acids are also hormonal regulators which change the way fat is processed in the liver, so changes made by gut microbes to bile acid metabolism can affect this internal process.

The scientists also explored how microbes break down fibre in the lower gut. Certain microbes allow dietary fibre to be digested and the more effective these microbes are, the more calories are absorbed from the diet.

Different people have different types of gut microbes living inside them and abnormalities in some types have recently been linked to diseases such as diabetes and obesity. The scientists believe that transplanting the bugs found in humans into mice will enable better understanding of gut microbes’ effects, good and bad, and help them to develop better treatments (including probiotics and functional foods) for a wide range of conditions.

Professor Jeremy Nicholson, one of the lead authors of the paper from the Department of Biomolecular Medicine at Imperial College London, said: “Humans carry around 1.5kg of bacteria inside of us – that’s the same sort of weight as your liver, so they have a big metabolic effect on our bodies. By transplanting human gut microbes into mice, scientists from Nestlé Research Center, Lausanne were able to make them partially human from a metabolic point of view, because we made their biochemistry more like ours. This makes studies on mice much more relevant to human problems.

“We found that the humanised mice had very different metabolic profiles to normal mice with respect to the metabolism of fats and in future we might be able to modify their metabolism using probiotics, like those found in some natural yoghurts. This gives us a new way of studying the beneficial effects of probiotics and functional foods and understanding what they do to our “friendly” bacteria. Our new approach allows us to explore which bugs are doing what in metabolic terms, to identify which bugs which might be causing chronic health problems, and investigate what effects different foods and probiotics can have on improving overall health,” he added.

Laura Gallagher | alfa
Further information:
http://www.imperial.ac.uk

More articles from Health and Medicine:

nachricht Millions through license revenues
27.04.2017 | Rheinische Friedrich-Wilhelms-Universität Bonn

nachricht New High-Performance Center Translational Medical Engineering
26.04.2017 | Fraunhofer ITEM

All articles from Health and Medicine >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Making lightweight construction suitable for series production

More and more automobile companies are focusing on body parts made of carbon fiber reinforced plastics (CFRP). However, manufacturing and repair costs must be further reduced in order to make CFRP more economical in use. Together with the Volkswagen AG and five other partners in the project HolQueSt 3D, the Laser Zentrum Hannover e.V. (LZH) has developed laser processes for the automatic trimming, drilling and repair of three-dimensional components.

Automated manufacturing processes are the basis for ultimately establishing the series production of CFRP components. In the project HolQueSt 3D, the LZH has...

Im Focus: Wonder material? Novel nanotube structure strengthens thin films for flexible electronics

Reflecting the structure of composites found in nature and the ancient world, researchers at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign have synthesized thin carbon nanotube (CNT) textiles that exhibit both high electrical conductivity and a level of toughness that is about fifty times higher than copper films, currently used in electronics.

"The structural robustness of thin metal films has significant importance for the reliable operation of smart skin and flexible electronics including...

Im Focus: Deep inside Galaxy M87

The nearby, giant radio galaxy M87 hosts a supermassive black hole (BH) and is well-known for its bright jet dominating the spectrum over ten orders of magnitude in frequency. Due to its proximity, jet prominence, and the large black hole mass, M87 is the best laboratory for investigating the formation, acceleration, and collimation of relativistic jets. A research team led by Silke Britzen from the Max Planck Institute for Radio Astronomy in Bonn, Germany, has found strong indication for turbulent processes connecting the accretion disk and the jet of that galaxy providing insights into the longstanding problem of the origin of astrophysical jets.

Supermassive black holes form some of the most enigmatic phenomena in astrophysics. Their enormous energy output is supposed to be generated by the...

Im Focus: A Quantum Low Pass for Photons

Physicists in Garching observe novel quantum effect that limits the number of emitted photons.

The probability to find a certain number of photons inside a laser pulse usually corresponds to a classical distribution of independent events, the so-called...

Im Focus: Microprocessors based on a layer of just three atoms

Microprocessors based on atomically thin materials hold the promise of the evolution of traditional processors as well as new applications in the field of flexible electronics. Now, a TU Wien research team led by Thomas Müller has made a breakthrough in this field as part of an ongoing research project.

Two-dimensional materials, or 2D materials for short, are extremely versatile, although – or often more precisely because – they are made up of just one or a...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Fighting drug resistant tuberculosis – InfectoGnostics meets MYCO-NET² partners in Peru

28.04.2017 | Event News

Expert meeting “Health Business Connect” will connect international medical technology companies

20.04.2017 | Event News

Wenn der Computer das Gehirn austrickst

18.04.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Wireless power can drive tiny electronic devices in the GI tract

28.04.2017 | Medical Engineering

Ice cave in Transylvania yields window into region's past

28.04.2017 | Earth Sciences

Nose2Brain – Better Therapy for Multiple Sclerosis

28.04.2017 | Life Sciences

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>