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Article

Partial Substitution of Meat with Insect (Alphitobius diaperinus) in a Carnivore Diet Changes the Gut Microbiome and Metabolome of Healthy Rats

1
Department of Food Science, Aarhus University, Agro Food Park 48, 8200 Aarhus, Denmark
2
CiFOOD, Centre for Innovative Food Research, Aarhus University, 8200 Aarhus, Denmark
3
Department of Food Science, University of Copenhagen, Rolighedsvej 30, 1958 Frederiksberg, Denmark
4
Department of Veterinary and Animal Sciences, University of Copenhagen, Grønnegårdsvej 15, 1958 Frederiksberg, Denmark
5
Department of Plant and Environmental Sciences, University of Copenhagen, Thorvaldsensvej 40, 1871 Frederiksberg, Denmark
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editors: Victor Benno Meyer-Rochow and Chuleui Jung
Foods 2021, 10(8), 1814; https://doi.org/10.3390/foods10081814
Received: 7 July 2021 / Revised: 2 August 2021 / Accepted: 3 August 2021 / Published: 5 August 2021
Insects are suggested as a sustainable protein source of high nutritional quality, but the effects of insect ingestion on processes in the gastrointestinal tract and gut microbiota (GM) remain to be established. We examined the effects of partial substitution of meat with insect protein (Alphitobius diaperinus) in a four-week dietary intervention in a healthy rat model (n = 30). GM composition was characterized using’ 16S rRNA gene amplicon profiling while the metabolomes of stomach, small intestine, and colon content, feces and blood were investigated by 1H-NMR spectroscopy. Metabolomics analyses revealed a larger escape of protein residues into the colon and a different microbial metabolization pattern of aromatic amino acids when partly substituting pork with insect. Both for rats fed a pork diet and rats fed a diet with partial replacement of pork with insect, the GM was dominated by Lactobacillus, Clostridium cluster XI and Akkermansia. However, Bray-Curtis dissimilarity metrics were different when insects were included in the diet. Introduction of insects in a common Western omnivore diet alters the gut microbiome diversity with consequences for endogenous metabolism. This finding highlights the importance of assessing gastrointestinal tract effects when evaluating new protein sources as meat replacements. View Full-Text
Keywords: NMR-based metabolomics; microbiota; insect protein; protein digestion; alternative proteins NMR-based metabolomics; microbiota; insect protein; protein digestion; alternative proteins
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MDPI and ACS Style

Lanng, S.K.; Zhang, Y.; Christensen, K.R.; Hansen, A.K.; Nielsen, D.S.; Kot, W.; Bertram, H.C. Partial Substitution of Meat with Insect (Alphitobius diaperinus) in a Carnivore Diet Changes the Gut Microbiome and Metabolome of Healthy Rats. Foods 2021, 10, 1814. https://doi.org/10.3390/foods10081814

AMA Style

Lanng SK, Zhang Y, Christensen KR, Hansen AK, Nielsen DS, Kot W, Bertram HC. Partial Substitution of Meat with Insect (Alphitobius diaperinus) in a Carnivore Diet Changes the Gut Microbiome and Metabolome of Healthy Rats. Foods. 2021; 10(8):1814. https://doi.org/10.3390/foods10081814

Chicago/Turabian Style

Lanng, Sofie Kaas, Yichang Zhang, Kristine Rothaus Christensen, Axel Kornerup Hansen, Dennis Sandris Nielsen, Witold Kot, and Hanne Christine Bertram. 2021. "Partial Substitution of Meat with Insect (Alphitobius diaperinus) in a Carnivore Diet Changes the Gut Microbiome and Metabolome of Healthy Rats" Foods 10, no. 8: 1814. https://doi.org/10.3390/foods10081814

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