54 research outputs found

    The Microbiota and Health Promoting Characteristics of the Fermented Beverage Kefir

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    peer-reviewedKefir is a complex fermented dairy product created through the symbiotic fermentation of milk by lactic acid bacteria and yeasts contained within an exopolysaccharide and protein complex called a kefir grain. As with other fermented dairy products, kefir has been associated with a range of health benefits such as cholesterol metabolism and angiotensin-converting enzyme (ACE) inhibition, antimicrobial activity, tumor suppression, increased speed of wound healing, and modulation of the immune system including the alleviation of allergy and asthma. These reports have led to increased interest in kefir as a focus of research and as a potential probiotic-containing product. Here, we review those studies with a particular emphasis on the microbial composition and the health benefits of the product, as well as discussing the further development of kefir as an important probiotic product.The authors are funded through the Teagasc Walsh Fellowship Scheme(2014025)and internal Teagasc funding(RMIS6486). BW is supported by the Canada Research Chairs Program and research in the Cotter laboratory is funded by SFI through the PI award “Obesibiotics”(11/PI/1137)and in the form of a center grant (APC Microbiome Institute Grant Number SFI/12/RC/2273)

    Commensal Bacteria and Expression of Two Major Intestinal Chemokines, TECK/CCL25 and MEC/CCL28, and Their Receptors

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    Background: CCL25/TECK and CCL28/MEC are CC chemokines primarily expressed in thymic dendritic cells and mucosal epithelial cells. Their receptors, CCR9 and CCR10, are mainly expressed on T and B lymphocytes. In human, mouse, pig and sheep CCL25 and CCL28 play an important role in the segregation and the compartmentalization of the mucosal immune system. As evidenced by early comparisons of germ-free and conventional animals, the intestinal bacterial microflora has a marked effect on host intestinal immune functions. However, little is known about the impact of bacterial colonization on constitutive and induced chemokine expressions as well as on the generation of anti-inflammatory mechanisms. [br/] Methodology/Principal Findings: Therefore, we decided to focus by qPCR on the mRNA expression of two main gut chemokines, CCL25 and CCL28, their receptors CCR9 and CCR10, the Tregs marker Foxp3 and anti-inflammatory cytokines TGF-beta and IL-10 following colonization with different bacterial species within the small intestine. To accomplish this we used an original germ-free neonatal pig model and monoassociated pigs with a representative Gram-negative (Escherichia coli) or Gram-positive (Lactobacillus fermentum) commensal bacteria commonly isolated from the neonatal pig intestine. Our results show a consistent and marked effect of microbial colonization on the mRNA expression of intestinal chemokines, chemokine receptors, Foxp3 and TGF-beta. Moreover, as evidenced by in vitro experiments using two different cell lines, the pattern of regulation of CCL25 and CCL28 expression in the gut appears complex and suggests an additional role for in vivo factors. [br/] Conclusions/Significance: Taken together, the results highlight the key role of bacterial microflora in the development of a functional intestinal immune system in an elegant and relevant model for human immune system development

    Small Intestine Early Innate Immunity Response during Intestinal Colonization by Escherichia coli Depends on Its Extra-Intestinal Virulence Status

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    International audienceUropathogenic Escherichia coli (UPEC) strains live as commensals in the digestive tract of the host, but they can also initiate urinary tract infections. The aim of this work was to determine how a host detects the presence of a new UPEC strain in the digestive tract. Mice were orally challenged with UPEC strains 536 and CFT073, non-pathogenic strain K12 MG1655, and ΔPAI-536, an isogenic mutant of strain 536 lacking all 7 pathogenicity islands whose virulence is drastically attenuated. Intestinal colonization was measured, and cytokine expression was determined in various organs recovered from mice after oral challenge. UPEC strain 536 efficiently colonized the mouse digestive tract, and prior Enterobacteriaceae colonization was found to impact strain 536 colonization efficiency. An innate immune response, detected as the production of TNFα, IL-6 and IL-10 cytokines, was activated in the ileum 48 hours after oral challenge with strain 536, and returned to baseline within 8 days, without a drop in fecal pathogen load. Although inflammation was detected in the ileum, histology was normal at the time of cytokine peak. Comparison of cytokine secretion 48h after oral gavage with E. coli strain 536, CFT073, MG1655 or ΔPAI-536 showed that inflammation was more pronounced with UPECs than with non-pathogenic or attenuated strains. Pathogenicity islands also seemed to be involved in host detection, as IL-6 intestinal secretion was increased after administration of E. coli strain 536, but not after administration of ΔPAI-536. In conclusion, UPEC colonization of the mouse digestive tract activates acute phase inflammatory cytokine secretion but does not trigger any pathological changes, illustrating the opportunistic nature of UPECs. This digestive tract colonization model will be useful for studying the factors controlling the switch from commensalism to pathogenicity

    Dietary Fiber and Intestinal Health of Monogastric Animals

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    Animal performance, feed efficiency, and overall health are heavily dependent on gut health. Changes in animal production systems and feed regulations away from the use of antibiotic growth promoters (AGP) have necessitated the identification of strategies to optimize gut health in novel and effective ways. Among alternatives to AGP, the inclusion of dietary fibers (DF) in monogastric diets has been attempted with some success. Alternative feedstuffs and coproducts are typically rich in fiber and can be used in the diets to reduce feed costs and optimize gut health. DF are naturally occurring compounds with a diverse composition and are present in all plant-based feedstuffs. DF stimulate the growth of health-promoting gut bacteria, are fermented in the distal small intestine and large intestine to short-chain fatty acids and have beneficial effects on the immune system. Maternal DF supplementation is one novel strategy suggested to have a beneficial programming effect on the microbial and immune development of their offspring. One mechanism by which DF improves gut health is through maintenance of an anaerobic intestinal environment that subsequently prevents facultative anaerobic pathogens from flourishing. Studies with pigs and poultry have shown that fermentation characteristics and their beneficial effects on gut health vary widely based on type, form, and the physico-chemical properties of the DF. Therefore, it is important to have information on the different types of DF and their role in optimizing gut health. This review will provide information and updates on different types of DF used in monogastric nutrition and its contribution to gut health including microbiology, fermentation characteristics, and innate and adaptive immune responses

    Bacterial resistance to antibiotic alternatives: a wolf in sheep’s clothing?

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    peer-reviewedImplications • Substantial pressure to reduce antibiotic use has necessitated the development of antibiotic alternatives. However, relatively little consideration has been given to the development of resistance to these alternatives. • Whether we come up with antibiotic alternatives that are bacteriocidal or inhibitory, bacteria will continue to adapt and evolve. • Some antibiotic alternatives support the development of antibiotic resistance necessitating caution. • There are opportunities to optimize antibiotic alternative effectiveness as well as to minimize the development of resistance mechanisms

    Altering Host Resistance to Infections through Microbial Transplantation

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    Host resistance to bacterial infections is thought to be dictated by host genetic factors. Infections by the natural murine enteric pathogen Citrobacter rodentium (used as a model of human enteropathogenic and enterohaemorrhagic E. coli infections) vary between mice strains, from mild self-resolving colonization in NIH Swiss mice to lethality in C3H/HeJ mice. However, no clear genetic component had been shown to be responsible for the differences observed with C. rodentium infections. Because the intestinal microbiota is important in regulating resistance to infection, and microbial composition is dependent on host genotype, it was tested whether variations in microbial composition between mouse strains contributed to differences in “host” susceptibility by transferring the microbiota of resistant mice to lethally susceptible mice prior to infection. Successful transfer of the microbiota from resistant to susceptible mice resulted in delayed pathogen colonization and mortality. Delayed mortality was associated with increased IL-22 mediated innate defense including antimicrobial peptides Reg3γ and Reg3β, and immunono-neutralization of IL-22 abrogated the beneficial effect of microbiota transfer. Conversely, depletion of the native microbiota in resistant mice by antibiotics and transfer of the susceptible mouse microbiota resulted in reduced innate defenses and greater pathology upon infection. This work demonstrates the importance of the microbiota and how it regulates mucosal immunity, providing an important factor in susceptibility to enteric infection. Transfer of resistance through microbial transplantation (bacteriotherapy) provides additional mechanisms to alter “host” resistance, and a novel means to alter enteric infection and to study host-pathogen interactions

    Transcriptome profiling of the small intestinal epithelium in germfree versus conventional piglets

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    <p>Abstract</p> <p>Background</p> <p>To gain insight into host-microbe interactions in a piglet model, a functional genomics approach was used to address the working hypothesis that transcriptionally regulated genes associated with promoting epithelial barrier function are activated as a defensive response to the intestinal microbiota. Cesarean-derived germfree (GF) newborn piglets were colonized with adult swine feces, and villus and crypt epithelial cell transcriptomes from colonized and GF neonatal piglets were compared using laser-capture microdissection and high-density porcine oligonucleotide microarray technology.</p> <p>Results</p> <p>Consistent with our hypothesis, resident microbiota induced the expression of genes contributing to intestinal epithelial cell turnover, mucus biosynthesis, and priming of the immune system. Furthermore, differential expression of genes associated with antigen presentation (pan SLA class I, <it>B2M</it>, <it>TAP1 </it>and <it>TAPBP</it>) demonstrated that microbiota induced immune responses using a distinct regulatory mechanism common for these genes. Specifically, gene network analysis revealed that microbial colonization activated both type I (IFNAR) and type II (IFNGR) interferon receptor mediated signaling cascades leading to enhanced expression of signal transducer and activator of transcription 1 (STAT1), STAT2 and IFN regulatory factor 7 (IRF7) transcription factors and the induction of IFN-inducible genes as a reflection of intestinal epithelial inflammation. In addition, activated RNA expression of NF-kappa-B inhibitor alpha (<it>NFκBIA</it>; a.k.a I-kappa-B-alpha, IKBα) and toll interacting protein (<it>TOLLIP</it>), both inhibitors of inflammation, along with downregulated expression of the immunoregulatory transcription factor GATA binding protein-1 (<it>GATA1</it>) is consistent with the maintenance of intestinal homeostasis.</p> <p>Conclusion</p> <p>This study supports the concept that the intestinal epithelium has evolved to maintain a physiological state of inflammation with respect to continuous microbial exposure, which serves to sustain a tight intestinal barrier while preventing overt inflammatory responses that would compromise barrier function.</p

    Jaboticaba (Myrciaria jaboticaba) powder consumption improves the metabolic profile and regulates gut microbiome composition in high-fat diet-fed mice

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    The consumption of a high-fat diet can cause metabolic syndrome and induces host gut microbial dysbiosis and non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD). We evaluated the effect of polyphenol-rich jaboticaba peel and seed powder (JPSP) on the gut microbial community composition and liver health in a mouse model of NAFLD. Three-month-old C57BL/6 J male mice, received either a control (C, 10% of lipids as energy, n = 16) or high-fat (HF, 50% of lipids as energy, n = 64) diet for nine weeks. The HF mice were randomly subdivided into four groups (n = 16 in each group), three of which (HF-J5, HF-J10, and HF-J15) were supplemented with dietary JPSP for four weeks (5%, 10%, and 15%, respectively). In addition to attenuating weight gain, JPSP consumption improved dyslipidemia and insulin resistance. In a dose-dependent manner, JPSP consumption ameliorated the expression of hepatic lipogenesis genes (AMPK, SREBP-1, HGMCoA, and ABCG8). The effects on the microbial community structure were determined in all JPSP-supplemented groups; however, the HF-J10 and HF-J15 diets led to a drastic depletion in the species of numerous bacterial families (Bifidobacteriaceae, Mogibacteriaceae, Christensenellaceae, Clostridiaceae, Dehalobacteriaceae, Peptococcaceae, Peptostreptococcaceae, and Ruminococcaceae) compared to the HF diet, some of which represented a reversal of increases associated with HF. The Lachnospiraceae and Enterobacteriaceae families and the Parabacteroides, Sutterella, Allobaculum, and Akkermansia genera were enriched more in the HF-J10 and HF-J15 groups than in the HF group. In conclusion, JPSP consumption improved obesity-related metabolic profiles and had a strong impact on the microbial community structure, thereby reversing NAFLD and decreasing its severity.This work was financially supported by Brazilian funding: FAPERJ – Fundação Carlos Chagas Filho de Amparo à Pesquisa do Estado do Rio de Janeiro (FAPERJ: E-26/202.677/2018, E-26/010.002203/2019) and Coordenação de Aperfeiçoamento de Pessoal de Nível Superior-Brazil (CAPES) – Finance code 001. Benjamin Willing was supported by the Canada Research Chair Program and his laboratory received funding from the Canadian Natural Science and Engineering Research Council (NSERC
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