Navigation Links
More than just bacteria: The importance of microbial diversity in gut health and disease
Date:3/9/2014

(March 10, 2014) The gut microbiota contains a vast number of microorganisms from all three domains of life, including bacteria, archaea and fungi, as well as viruses. These interact in a complex way to contribute towards both health and the development of disease interactions that are only now being elucidated thanks to the application of advanced DNA sequencing technology in this field.

"Using novel metagenomic approaches, scientists are at last beginning to characterize the taxonomic abundance and community relationships not only of bacteria, but also the other microbes that inhabit the gut environment,"1 says Professor Gary Wu, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia. "This exciting work is bringing us one step closer to understanding the importance of microbial diversity in intestinal health and disease and could ultimately lead to new ways of diagnosing and treating gastrointestinal (GI) disease."

His talk was one of the topics presented at the Gut Microbiota for Health World Summit in Miami, FL, USA. On March 8-9, 2014, internationally leading experts discussed the latest advances in gut microbiota research and its impact on health.

The microorganisms that inhabit the gut can be broadly divided into prokaryotes (bacteria and archaea), bacteriophages (viruses that infect prokaryotes), eukaryotic viruses, and the meiofauna (microscopically small benthic invertebrates that live in both marine and fresh water environments primarily fungi and protozoa).1 Of these, bacteria have been the most extensively studied. The gastrointestinal tract is now considered one of the most complex microbial ecosystems on earth and understanding how the multiple communities interact presents both opportunities and challenges.

"We have known for some time that the bacteria in the gut play an important role in both health and disease," says Prof. Wu. "It is also now becoming clear that the non-bacterial microbiota interacts in a complex way with the bacterial microbiota to contribute to these processes."

Viruses in the gut

The most common viruses in the gut are the bacteriophages. These rapidly-evolving viruses can outnumber bacteria by a factor of 10 to one; they infect and destroy bacterial cells and have the ability to transfer genetic material from one bacterium to another, with potentially profound implications for GI health and disease.

"There is a predatorprey relationship between bacteriophages and bacteria that may play a role in altering the bacterial microbiota in conditions such as inflammatory bowel diseases (IBD)," says Prof. Wu. "The fact that bacteriophages induce immune responses in bacteria and may also transmit genomic material into bacteria that may alter their function makes these viruses extremely important and we need to know much more about them."

Meiofauna in the microbiota

DNA sequencing techniques have also confirmed the presence of commensal meiofauna in the GI tract that may be important in promoting health and disease.1 Certain types of meiofauna (e.g. helminths and Blastocystis) are thought to protect against IBD by suppressing inflammation, and others believe that increased fungal diversity may contribute to GI diseases, including IBD.

"Decreases in fungal diversity have been shown to correlate with an increase in healthy bacterial colonisation following probiotic therapy, suggesting niche competition between fungi and bacteria," says Prof. Wu. "This effect is also evident in the development of mucosal Candida infection following antibiotic treatment."

Non-bacterial microbes and the future

Prof. Wu and others believe that the importance of trans-domain interactions in health and disease are only just beginning to emerge. By studying the complex relationships between bacterial and non-bacterial microbes in the gut, it is hoped that a greater understanding of pathogenic mechanisms will be gained, leading ultimately to novel approaches to diagnosis and treatment.


'/>"/>
Contact: Aimee Frank
afrank@gastro.org
301-941-2620
American Gastroenterological Association
Source:Eurekalert

Related medicine news :

1. Beauty & bacteria: Slim, attractive men have less nasal bacteria than heavy men
2. Growing up as a neural stem cell: The importance of clinging together and then letting go
3. IntelliQuote Works to Educate Consumers about the Importance of Life Insurance Protection and to Make Coverage More Readily Available
4. New Metal-on-Metal Hip Implant Study Emphasizes Importance of Patients’ Symptoms in Evaluating the Need for Hip Replacement Revisions, Bernstein Liebhard LLP Reports
5. Seattle Assisted Living Community Recognizes Importance of Music and Dance with Busy January Event Schedule
6. Study Questions Importance of Triggers in Setting Off Migraines
7. Members of University Services Sleep Diagnostic & Treatment Centers Wake Up Industries and Communities to the Importance of Sleep for Sleep Awareness Week
8. Muscular Development Store Comments on the Top 10 Pre-workout foods and the Importance of Carbohydrates in a Pre-Workout Meal
9. Westlake Village Dentist, Dr. Shindler, Now Informs Patients about the Importance of Prevention for Oral Health
10. Dr. Stephen Lazarus Continues to Recognize the Importance of Quality, Medical Skin Care and Products in Welcoming Licensed Paramedical Esthetician, Amye Smith
11. Jose Cirino, Director of Operations for GeneCell International, Accentuates the Importance Surrounding the Minority Community
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:4/29/2017)... ... , ... More than half of Americans suffering from noise-induced hearing loss do ... that causes hearing loss? May 1 marks the beginning of Better Hearing & Speech ... well as schedule a hearing evaluation for anyone with concerns about his/her hearing. , ...
(Date:4/28/2017)... , ... April 28, 2017 , ... ... (The National Campaign) announces its support for the Access to Contraception for Women ... Shaheen (D-NH) and Rep. Jackie Speier (D-CA), will help to ensure that all ...
(Date:4/28/2017)... ... April 28, 2017 , ... Somnoware, a leading provider of ... which enables sleep physicians to create and edit their interpretation reports. This solution ... a familiar interface that does not require additional training to use. It also ...
(Date:4/28/2017)... ... ... affects much more than energy – it also has mental and physical benefits. According to ... time, which can increase the risk of having a car accident. , This week ... to help you sleep better and feel better:, , Turn off ...
(Date:4/28/2017)... ... April 28, 2017 , ... Ushio America proudly introduces ... an instant energy-saving solution for F32T8 fluorescent lamps on most instant-start and programmed-start ... 50,000 hour rated lamps utilize the existing electronic ballast, saving labor and maintenance ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:4/20/2017)... , April 20, 2017 Research and ... Technologies - Innovation Driven by Rapidly Expanding Injectables Market and Increasing ... their offering. ... for drug delivery technologies will rise from USD 20 Billion in ... Global Drug Delivery Technologies - Innovation Driven by Rapidly Expanding ...
(Date:4/20/2017)... , April 20, 2017 Research ... Pharmacogenomics Market Size, Market Share, Application Analysis, Regional Outlook, Growth ... report to their offering. ... The global pharmacogenomics market was valued at US$ 7,167.6 ... Mn by 2024, expanding at a CAGR of 5.6% from ...
(Date:4/19/2017)... Medical Corporation (TSX: CRH) (NYSE MKT: CRHM) (the "Company"), announces that it ... 2017 at the Sheraton Hotel in Toronto, Ontario ... the Company is scheduled to present on Tuesday, May 2 at ... Chairman of the Board, Tony Holler will also attend ... For more details ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: