Microbes to fight fatty liver disease

Project coordinator Gianni Panagiotou Leibniz-HKI

Headed by Gianni Panagiotou from the Leibniz Institute for Natural Product Research and Infection Biology (Leibniz-HKI) in Jena, eight European scientists have joined forces to improve the diagnosis and therapy of non-alcoholic fatty liver disease. As part of the Innovative Training Network BestTreat, which is funded by the European Commission, they intend to train 15 doctoral researchers from September on.

Partners from Finland, Denmark, the Netherlands and Germany work together in the network and combine their scientific expertise in systems biology, human biology and microbiology to tackle this complex topic. The common goal is to identify specific patterns in the composition of the intestinal microbiome that can be used to diagnose and predict the course of the disease.

In addition, therapeutic approaches will be developed to restore the balance of the intestinal microbiome. For example, certain microorganisms will be used as so-called biotherapeutics. The young scientists receive interdisciplinary training and spend time visiting the partners during the course of their doctoral thesis. The involvement of companies allows to close the gap between academic research on the cause of the disease and the development of new diagnostic and therapeutic methods in industry.

“The cooperation of partners from different disciplines and the participation of companies opens up completely new possibilities: Not only can we elucidate the role of the intestinal microbiome in the development of non-alcoholic fatty liver disease, but we also want to develop tools to use the microbiome as a diagnostic and therapeutic tool,” BestTreat coordinator Gianni Panagiotou describes the novel approach.

At the Leibniz-HKI, three of the doctoral researchers in the EU network will work on specific aspects of the extensive research program. “One research focus in Jena is the role of complex microbial communities in the development of diseases. We are very pleased to be able to gain valuable insights with BestTreat using the concrete example of intestinal microbiomes in fatty liver disease,” says Axel Brakhage, Director of the Leibniz-HKI and Chair at the Friedrich Schiller University Jena, welcoming the establishment of the new network.

An underestimated disease

Non-alcoholic fatty liver disease is one of the most common diseases worldwide – it is estimated that up to 27% of the population suffer from it. The symptoms are manifold and range from fatty degeneration to cirrhosis of the liver or even liver cancer. The disease often remains undetected until severe or life-threatening complications occur. Triggers can be, for example, the diet, an imbalance in the intestinal microbiome or genetic factors. However, the underlying mechanisms are still unclear and there is no way of predicting the individual course of the disease.

Gianni Panagiotou
gianni.panagiotou@leibniz-hki.de

Media Contact

Dr. Michael Ramm idw - Informationsdienst Wissenschaft

Weitere Informationen:

http://www.hki-jena.de

Alle Nachrichten aus der Kategorie: Life Sciences

Articles and reports from the Life Sciences area deal with applied and basic research into modern biology, chemistry and human medicine.

Valuable information can be found on a range of life sciences fields including bacteriology, biochemistry, bionics, bioinformatics, biophysics, biotechnology, genetics, geobotany, human biology, marine biology, microbiology, molecular biology, cellular biology, zoology, bioinorganic chemistry, microchemistry and environmental chemistry.

Zurück zur Startseite

Kommentare (0)

Schreib Kommentar

Neueste Beiträge

New calculation refines comparison of matter with antimatter

Theorists publish improved prediction for the tiny difference in kaon decays observed by experiments. -An international collaboration of theoretical physicists–including scientists from the U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE) Brookhaven National…

New study identifies wheat varieties that resist the destructive stripe rust disease

Stripe rust is one of the most destructive wheat diseases in the world, especially in the United States. While the disease can be controlled by chemicals, those may be harmful…

Hubble captures crisp new image of Jupiter and Europa

This latest image of Jupiter, taken by the NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope on 25 August 2020, was captured when the planet was 653 million kilometres from Earth. Hubble’s sharp view…

By continuing to use the site, you agree to the use of cookies. more information

The cookie settings on this website are set to "allow cookies" to give you the best browsing experience possible. If you continue to use this website without changing your cookie settings or you click "Accept" below then you are consenting to this.

Close