Navigation Links
Culprits and cures for obesity may reside in our gut
Date:7/25/2011

Obesity in the United States is reaching ever more alarming proportions, posing a severe menace to public health and exacerbating a crisis in health care costs both domestically and worldwide.

Now, Rosa Krajmalnik-Brown and fellow researchers at the Biodesign Institute at Arizona State University, in collaboration with Dr. John DiBaise and colleagues at the Mayo Clinic, Scottsdale, are looking into what may be a leading driver in body weight regulationthe diverse zoo of microorganisms inhabiting the human gut.

The team will explore the contributions of so-called gut microflora to the success or failure of two popular treatments for obesity, hopefully gaining new insight into how body weight is managed (or mismanaged) based on the demographics of these microorganisms. "We normally use microorganisms to solve environmental problems such as water clean-up and energy production," Krajmalnik-Brown says. "Now we are excited to have the opportunity to assess the contributions of our best collaborators, i.e., microorganisms, to human digestion and health."

The new study, supported by a 4 year, $1.7 million grant from the NIH, is part of a continuing collaboration between Biodesign and the Mayo Clinic. It began when John DiBaise, a gastroenterologist at Mayo, started to explore the underlying mechanisms leading to obesity and to contemplate possible alternatives to gastric bypass surgerycurrently, one of the most effective treatments for morbid obesity.

DiBaise enlisted the help of Bruce Rittmann, director of Biodesign's Swette Center for Environmental Biotechnologyan expert on the use of microbial communities for human benefit, particularly in the areas of bioremediation and renewable bioenergy. Fellow researcher Krajmalnik-Brown, principle investigator for the new study, brings her detailed knowledge of microbial ecology to the table. She will apply modern high-throughput sequencing techniques to assess complex microbial communities in the guts of patients who have undergone gastric bypass surgery, comparing these with the microbial populations found in normal weight and obese subjects. Rittmann will develop a mathematical model which will integrate ecological and metabolic results gathered in the project.

The group had earlier speculated that the composition of microflora in the human gut may play a vital role in directing the way energy extracted from food is stored and expended.

Bacteria involved in fermentation, as well as methanogens belonging to the Archaea domain, seem to act syntrophicallythat is, in a collaboration that accelerates efficient fermentation of polysaccharides and carbohydrates. Some of the fermentation products are absorbed via the intestinal wall and ultimately converted to fat. If left unchecked, such processes can contribute to obesity.

The crisis of obesity is acute, affecting some 4 million Americans. In the United States, the prevalence in adults has increased by over 75 percent since 1980. More than half of the U.S. population is currently overweight and 1 in 3 Americans qualify as clinically obese. Obesity-related illnesses kill about 300,000 Americans every year, many succumbing to diabetes, cardiovascular disease, cancer, and other obesity-associated maladies.

Currently, the most effective treatment for obesity is some form of bariatric surgery, in which a portion of the stomach and small intestine are bypassed, limiting the amount and type of food an individual can eat. In the case of morbid obesity, such surgeries are the only form of treatment that consistently achieve and maintain major weight loss, thereby decreasing the incidence of co-morbid afflictions and improving survival prospects and quality of life.

The two most successful variants of this surgeryknown as the Roux-en-Y gastric bypass (RYGP) and laparoscopic adjustable band gastric bypass (LAGB)will be evaluated in the current study. Having established in previous work that patients receiving these treatments display a unique composition of gut microbiota, the group will explore in depth how the dramatic microbial changes observed in post-surgery patients contribute to the success or failure of the procedure.

In order to evaluate the contribution of gut microbial communities for achieving and maintaining weight loss following gastric bypass, the new study has set 4 research goals: 1) Use high-throughput sequencing to identify fermenters that interact with a particular group of H2-consuming microorganisms; 2) Track and quantify the presence of luminal and mucosal H2-consuming microorganisms using quantitative PCR; 3) Track metabolic products and determine syntrophies and metabolic functions of the microorganisms associated with energy extraction; and 4) Integrate and interpret the results using an ecological approach through mathematical modeling.

Ultimately, new insights into the composition and dynamics of gut microbial communities, particularly the delicate syntrophy existing between fermenting Bacteria and methanogenic Archaea, will improve the accuracy of prognosis for those undergoing bariatric surgery. Further, such understanding may help identify individuals at risk of developing obesity, while opening the door to eventual, non-invasive therapies, based on management of gut microflora.


'/>"/>

Contact: Joseph Caspermeyer
Joseph.Caspermeyer@asu.edu
Arizona State University
Source:Eurekalert  

Related biology news :

1. UT Southwestern researchers uncover culprits in life-threatening clotting disorder
2. Parente Randolph Secures Access to New Corporate Headquarters With BIO-key(R) Biometric Identification
3. Combined stem cell-gene therapy approach cures human genetic disease in vitro
4. Super sticky barnacle glue cures like blood clots
5. National Institutes of Health Secures Armory with Patent-Pending Technology
6. New year, new vitamin C discovery: It cures mice with accelerated aging disease
7. Gene therapy cures canines of inherited form of day blindness, Penn veterinary researchers say
8. Researchers: Cures to diseases may live in our guts
9. NextCAT Inc. secures $250,000 to commercialize biodiesel technology developed at Wayne State
10. NextCAT secures license agreement for advanced biofuel technology from Wayne State
11. SPO Secures Equity Line Facility of US$5 Million
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
Related Image:
Culprits and cures for obesity may reside in our gut
(Date:3/31/2016)... 2016  Genomics firm Nabsys has completed a financial ... Bready , M.D., who returned to the company in ... leadership team, including Chief Technology Officer, John Oliver ... Nurnberg and Vice President of Software and Informatics, ... Dr. Bready served as CEO of Nabsys from ...
(Date:3/21/2016)... -- Unique technology combines v ...   Xura, Inc. (NASDAQ: ... communications services, today announced it is working alongside SpeechPro ... particularly those in the Financial Services Sector, the ability ... a mobile app, alongside, and in combination with, traditional ...
(Date:3/14/2016)... NXTD ) ("NXT-ID" or the "Company"), ... the airing of a new series of commercials on Time ... 21 st .  The commercials will air on Bloomberg TV, ... the Street show. --> NXTD ) ("NXT-ID" or ... market, announces the airing of a new series of commercials ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:5/25/2016)... UTAH. (PRWEB) , ... May 25, 2016 , ... WEDI, ... healthcare information exchange, today announced that Charles W. Stellar has been named by the ... interim CEO since January 2016. As an executive leader with more than 35 years ...
(Date:5/24/2016)... La Jolla, CA (PRWEB) , ... May 24, 2016 , ... ... and financial planning for corporate executives and entrepreneurs, held The Future of San Diego ... leaders in the San Diego life science community attended the event with speakers Dr. ...
(Date:5/23/2016)... England , May 23, 2016 ... May 25 th at 10:15 a.m. ET before the ... the role genetically engineered mosquitos can play in controlling the ... carrier of the Zika virus.      (Logo: ... engineered male mosquito with a self-limiting gene. Trials in ...
(Date:5/20/2016)... ... May 20, 2016 , ... The leading Regenerative Veterinary ... most experienced veterinary clients have treated over 100 of their own patients with the ... provide the highest level of care for their patients. , The veterinarians are ...
Breaking Biology Technology: