Special Issue "Nutrition, Microbiota and Noncommunicable Diseases"

A special issue of Nutrients (ISSN 2072-6643). This special issue belongs to the section "Prebiotics and Probiotics".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (30 November 2019).

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A printed edition of this Special Issue is available here.

Special Issue Editor

Dr. Julio Plaza-Díaz
Website
Guest Editor
Children's Hospital Eastern Ontario Research Institute, Ottawa, ON K1H 8L1, Canada.
Interests: Microbiota; Cancer; Metabolic disorders; Gut microbiota; Diet
Special Issues and Collections in MDPI journals

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Health is defined as “the state of the organism when it functions optimally without evidence of disease”, and surprisingly, the words “microbes” or “microorganism” are missing in this definition. The regulation of gut microbiota is mediated by an enormous quantity of aspects, such as, microbiological factors, host characteristics, diet patterns and environmental variables. Some protective, structural and metabolic functions are reported for gut microbiota, and these functions are related to the regulation of homeostasis and host health. Host defence against pathogens is, in part, mediated through gut microbiota action and requires intimate interpretation of the current microenvironment and discrimination between commensal and occasional bacteria.

Prof. Dr. Julio Plaza-Díaz
Guest Editor

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Keywords

  • Microbiota or microbiome
  • Nutrition
  • Noncommunicable diseases
  • Diet
  • Probiotics
  • Prebiotics
  • Intestinal microbiota
  • Health

Published Papers (21 papers)

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Editorial

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Open AccessEditorial
Nutrition, Microbiota and Noncommunicable Diseases
Nutrients 2020, 12(7), 1971; https://doi.org/10.3390/nu12071971 - 02 Jul 2020
Abstract
The advent of new sequencing technologies has inspired the foundation of novel research to ascertain the connections between the microbial communities that reside in our gut and some physiological and pathological conditions [...] Full article

Research

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Open AccessArticle
Randomised Double-Blind Placebo-Controlled Trial of Inulin with Metronidazole in Non-Alcoholic Fatty Liver Disease (NAFLD)
Nutrients 2020, 12(4), 937; https://doi.org/10.3390/nu12040937 - 27 Mar 2020
Cited by 4
Abstract
Background: Non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) can be ameliorated by weight loss although difficult to maintain. Emerging evidence indicates that prebiotics and antibiotics improve NAFLD. Aim: To determine whether inulin supplementation after brief metronidazole therapy is effective in reducing alanine aminotransferase [...] Read more.
Background: Non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) can be ameliorated by weight loss although difficult to maintain. Emerging evidence indicates that prebiotics and antibiotics improve NAFLD. Aim: To determine whether inulin supplementation after brief metronidazole therapy is effective in reducing alanine aminotransferase (ALT) and maintaining weight loss achieved through a very-low-calorie diet (VLCD) among people with NAFLD. Methods: Sixty-two people with NAFLD commenced 4-week VLCD using Optifast meal replacements (600 kcal/day). Sixty were then randomised into a 12-week double-blind, placebo-controlled, parallel three-arm trial: (1) 400 mg metronidazole twice daily in Week 1 then inulin 4 g twice daily OR (2) placebo twice daily in week one then inulin OR (3) placebo-placebo. Main outcomes were ALT and body weight at 12 weeks. Fecal microbiota changes were also evaluated. Results: Mean body mass index (BMI) and ALT reduced after VLCD by 2.4 kg/m2 and 11 U/L, respectively. ALT further decreased after metronidazole-inulin compared to after placebo-placebo (mean ALT change −19.6 vs. −0.2 U/L, respectively; p = 0.026); however, weight loss maintenance did not differ. VLCD treatment decreased the ratio of Firmicutes/Bacteroidetes (p = 0.002). Conclusion: Brief metronidazole followed by inulin supplementation can reduce ALT beyond that achieved after VLCD in patients with NAFLD. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Relationship Between the Gastrointestinal Side Effects of an Anti-Hypertensive Medication and Changes in the Serum Lipid Metabolome
Nutrients 2020, 12(1), 205; https://doi.org/10.3390/nu12010205 - 13 Jan 2020
Cited by 1
Abstract
An earlier study using a rat model system indicated that the active ingredients contained in the anti-hypertensive medication amlodipine (AMD) appeared to induce various bowel problems, including constipation and inflammation. A probiotic blend was found to alleviate intestinal complications caused by the medicine. [...] Read more.
An earlier study using a rat model system indicated that the active ingredients contained in the anti-hypertensive medication amlodipine (AMD) appeared to induce various bowel problems, including constipation and inflammation. A probiotic blend was found to alleviate intestinal complications caused by the medicine. To gain more extensive insight into the beneficial effects of the probiotic blend, we investigated the changes in metabolite levels using a non-targeted metabolic approach with ultra-performance liquid chromatography-quadrupole/time-of-fligh (UPLC-q/TOF) mass spectrometry. Analysis of lipid metabolites revealed that rats that received AMD had a different metabolome profile compared with control rats and rats that received AMD plus the probiotic blend. In the AMD-administered group, serum levels of phosphatidylcholines, lysophosphatidylcholines, sphingomyelins, triglycerides with large numbers of double bonds, cholesterols, sterol derivatives, and cholesterol esters (all p < 0.05) were increased compared with those of the control group and the group that received AMD plus the probiotic blend. The AMD-administered group also exhibited significantly decreased levels of triglycerides with small numbers of double bonds (all p < 0.05). These results support our hypothesis that AMD-induced compositional changes in the gut microbiota are a causal factor in inflammation. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
The Timing Effects of Soy Protein Intake on Mice Gut Microbiota
Nutrients 2020, 12(1), 87; https://doi.org/10.3390/nu12010087 - 27 Dec 2019
Cited by 4
Abstract
Soy protein intake is known to cause microbiota changes. While there are some reports about the effect of soy protein intake on gut microbiota and lipid metabolism, effective timing of soy protein intake has not been investigated. In this study, we examined the [...] Read more.
Soy protein intake is known to cause microbiota changes. While there are some reports about the effect of soy protein intake on gut microbiota and lipid metabolism, effective timing of soy protein intake has not been investigated. In this study, we examined the effect of soy protein intake timing on microbiota. Mice were fed twice a day, in the morning and evening, to compare the effect of soy protein intake in the morning with that in the evening. Mice were divided into three groups: mice fed only casein protein, mice fed soy protein in the morning, and mice fed soy protein in the evening under high-fat diet conditions. They were kept under the experimental condition for two weeks and were sacrificed afterward. We measured cecal pH and collected cecal contents and feces. Short-chain fatty acids (SCFAs) from cecal contents were measured by gas chromatography. The microbiota was analyzed by sequencing 16S rRNA genes from feces. Soy protein intake whether in the morning or evening led to a greater microbiota diversity and a decrease in cecal pH resulting from SCFA production compared to casein intake. In addition, these effects were relatively stronger by morning soy protein intake. Therefore, soy protein intake in the morning may have relatively stronger effects on microbiota than that in the evening. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Urinary TMAO Levels Are Associated with the Taxonomic Composition of the Gut Microbiota and with the Choline TMA-Lyase Gene (cutC) Harbored by Enterobacteriaceae
Nutrients 2020, 12(1), 62; https://doi.org/10.3390/nu12010062 - 25 Dec 2019
Cited by 7
Abstract
Gut microbiota metabolization of dietary choline may promote atherosclerosis through trimethylamine (TMA), which is rapidly absorbed and converted in the liver to proatherogenic trimethylamine-N-oxide (TMAO). The aim of this study was to verify whether TMAO urinary levels may be associated with the fecal [...] Read more.
Gut microbiota metabolization of dietary choline may promote atherosclerosis through trimethylamine (TMA), which is rapidly absorbed and converted in the liver to proatherogenic trimethylamine-N-oxide (TMAO). The aim of this study was to verify whether TMAO urinary levels may be associated with the fecal relative abundance of specific bacterial taxa and the bacterial choline TMA-lyase gene cutC. The analysis of sequences available in GenBank grouped the cutC gene into two main clusters, cut-Dd and cut-Kp. A quantitative real-time polymerase chain reaction (qPCR) protocol was developed to quantify cutC and was used with DNA isolated from three fecal samples collected weekly over the course of three consecutive weeks from 16 healthy adults. The same DNA was used for 16S rRNA gene profiling. Concomitantly, urine was used to quantify TMAO by ultra-performance liquid chromatography coupled with tandem mass spectrometry (UPLC-MS/MS). All samples were positive for cutC and TMAO. Correlation analysis showed that the cut-Kp gene cluster was significantly associated with Enterobacteriaceae. Linear mixed models revealed that urinary TMAO levels may be predicted by fecal cut-Kp and by 23 operational taxonomic units (OTUs). Most of the OTUs significantly associated with TMAO were also significantly associated with cut-Kp, confirming the possible relationship between these two factors. In conclusion, this preliminary method-development study suggests the existence of a relationship between TMAO excreted in urine, specific fecal bacterial OTUs, and a cutC subgroup ascribable to the choline-TMA conversion enzymes of Enterobacteriaceae. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Mice Microbiota Composition Changes by Inulin Feeding with a Long Fasting Period under a Two-Meals-Per-Day Schedule
Nutrients 2019, 11(11), 2802; https://doi.org/10.3390/nu11112802 - 16 Nov 2019
Cited by 7
Abstract
Water-soluble dietary fiber is known to modulate fecal microbiota. Although there are a few reports investigating the effects of fiber intake timing on metabolism, there are none on the effect of intake timing on microbiota. Therefore, in this study, we examined the timing [...] Read more.
Water-soluble dietary fiber is known to modulate fecal microbiota. Although there are a few reports investigating the effects of fiber intake timing on metabolism, there are none on the effect of intake timing on microbiota. Therefore, in this study, we examined the timing effects of inulin-containing food on fecal microbiota. Mice were housed under conditions with a two-meals-per-day schedule, with a long fasting period in the morning and a short fasting period in the evening. Then, 10–14 days after inulin intake, cecal content and feces were collected, and cecal pH and short-chain fatty acids (SCFAs) were measured. The microbiome was determined using 16S rDNA sequencing. Inulin feeding in the morning rather than the evening decreased the cecal pH, increased SCFAs, and changed the microbiome composition. These data suggest that inulin is more easily digested by fecal microbiota during the active period than the inactive period. Furthermore, to confirm the effect of fasting length, mice were housed under a one-meal-per-day schedule. When the duration of fasting was equal, the difference between morning and evening nearly disappeared. Thus, our study demonstrates that consuming inulin at breakfast, which is generally after a longer fasting period, has a greater effect on the microbiota. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Changes in Microbiota and Bacterial Protein Caseinolytic Peptidase B During Food Restriction in Mice: Relevance for the Onset and Perpetuation of Anorexia Nervosa
Nutrients 2019, 11(10), 2514; https://doi.org/10.3390/nu11102514 - 18 Oct 2019
Cited by 4
Abstract
Microbiota contributes to the regulation of eating behavior and might be implicated in the pathophysiology of anorexia nervosa. ClpB (Caseinolytic peptidase B) protein produced mainly by the Enterobacteriaceae family has been identified as a conformational mimetic of α-MSH, which could result in similar [...] Read more.
Microbiota contributes to the regulation of eating behavior and might be implicated in the pathophysiology of anorexia nervosa. ClpB (Caseinolytic peptidase B) protein produced mainly by the Enterobacteriaceae family has been identified as a conformational mimetic of α-MSH, which could result in similar anorexigenic effects. The aim of this study was to highlight the role of the microbiome and the ClpB protein in deregulation and self-maintenance of anorexia pathology. Male C57Bl/6 mice were undergone to the ABA (Activity-Based Anorexia) protocol: after 5 days of acclimatization, both ABA and LFA (Limited Food Access) mice had progressively limited access to food until D17. At the end of protocol, the plasma ClpB concentration and Enterobacteriaceae DNA in colonic content were measured. As expected, dietary restriction induced lost weight in LFA and ABA mice. At D10, colonic permeability and plasma concentration of the ClpB protein were significantly increased in LFA and ABA mice vs. controls. At D17, plasma concentration of ClpB was increased in LFA and ABA mice and, it was correlated with proportion of Enterobacteriaceae in the faeces. These abnormally high ClpB concentrations and all associated factors, and therefore might contribute to the initiation and/or perpetuation of anorexia nervosa by interfering with satiety signaling. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
New and Preliminary Evidence on Altered Oral and Gut Microbiota in Individuals with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD): Implications for ASD Diagnosis and Subtyping Based on Microbial Biomarkers
Nutrients 2019, 11(9), 2128; https://doi.org/10.3390/nu11092128 - 06 Sep 2019
Cited by 15
Abstract
Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) is a complex neurological and developmental disorder characterized by behavioral and social impairments as well as multiple co-occurring conditions, such as gastrointestinal abnormalities, dental/periodontal diseases, and allergies. The etiology of ASD likely involves interaction between genetic and environmental factors. [...] Read more.
Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) is a complex neurological and developmental disorder characterized by behavioral and social impairments as well as multiple co-occurring conditions, such as gastrointestinal abnormalities, dental/periodontal diseases, and allergies. The etiology of ASD likely involves interaction between genetic and environmental factors. Recent studies suggest that oral and gut microbiome play important roles in the pathogenesis of inflammation, immune dysfunction, and disruption of the gut–brain axis, which may contribute to ASD pathophysiology. The majority of previous studies used unrelated neurotypical individuals as controls, and they focused on the gut microbiome, with little attention paid to the oral flora. In this pilot study, we used a first degree-relative matched design combined with high fidelity 16S rRNA (ribosomal RNA) gene amplicon sequencing in order to characterize the oral and gut microbiotas of patients with ASD compared to neurotypical individuals, and explored the utility of microbiome markers for ASD diagnosis and subtyping of clinical comorbid conditions. Additionally, we aimed to develop microbiome biomarkers to monitor responses to a subsequent clinical trial using probiotics supplementation. We identified distinct features of gut and salivary microbiota that differed between ASD patients and neurotypical controls. We next explored the utility of some differentially enriched markers for ASD diagnosis and examined the association between the oral and gut microbiomes using network analysis. Due to the tremendous clinical heterogeneity of the ASD population, we explored the relationship between microbiome and clinical indices as an attempt to extract microbiome signatures assocociated with clinical subtypes, including allergies, abdominal pain, and abnormal dietary habits. The diagnosis of ASD currently relies on psychological testing with potentially high subjectivity. Given the emerging role that the oral and gut microbiome plays in systemic diseases, our study will provide preliminary evidence for developing microbial markers that can be used to diagnose or guide treatment of ASD and comorbid conditions. These preliminary results also serve as a starting point to test whether altering the oral and gut microbiome could improve co-morbid conditions in patients with ASD and further modify the core symptoms of ASD. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Effects of Regular Kefir Consumption on Gut Microbiota in Patients with Metabolic Syndrome: A Parallel-Group, Randomized, Controlled Study
Nutrients 2019, 11(9), 2089; https://doi.org/10.3390/nu11092089 - 04 Sep 2019
Cited by 10
Abstract
Several health-promoting effects of kefir have been suggested, however, there is limited evidence for its potential effect on gut microbiota in metabolic syndrome This study aimed to investigate the effects of regular kefir consumption on gut microbiota composition, and their relation with the [...] Read more.
Several health-promoting effects of kefir have been suggested, however, there is limited evidence for its potential effect on gut microbiota in metabolic syndrome This study aimed to investigate the effects of regular kefir consumption on gut microbiota composition, and their relation with the components of metabolic syndrome. In a parallel-group, randomized, controlled clinical trial setting, patients with metabolic syndrome were randomized to receive 180 mL/day kefir (n = 12) or unfermented milk (n = 10) for 12 weeks. Anthropometrical measurements, blood samples, blood pressure measurements, and fecal samples were taken at the beginning and end of the study. Fasting insulin, HOMA-IR, TNF-α, IFN-γ, and systolic and diastolic blood pressure showed a significant decrease by the intervention of kefir (p ≤ 0.05, for each). However, no significant difference was obtained between the kefir and unfermented milk groups (p > 0.05 for each). Gut microbiota analysis showed that regular kefir consumption resulted in a significant increase only in the relative abundance of Actinobacteria (p = 0.023). No significant change in the relative abundance of Bacteroidetes, Proteobacteria or Verrucomicrobia by kefir consumption was obtained. Furthermore, the changes in the relative abundance of sub-phylum bacterial populations did not differ significantly between the groups (p > 0.05, for each). Kefir supplementation had favorable effects on some of the metabolic syndrome parameters, however, further investigation is needed to understand its effect on gut microbiota composition. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
The Interplay between Maternal and Post-Weaning High-Fat Diet and Gut Microbiota in the Developmental Programming of Hypertension
Nutrients 2019, 11(9), 1982; https://doi.org/10.3390/nu11091982 - 22 Aug 2019
Cited by 10
Abstract
Excessive intake of saturated fat has been linked to hypertension. Gut microbiota and their metabolites, short-chain fatty acids (SCFAs), are known to be involved in the development of hypertension. We examined whether maternal and post-weaning high-fat (HF) diet-induced hypertension in adult male offspring [...] Read more.
Excessive intake of saturated fat has been linked to hypertension. Gut microbiota and their metabolites, short-chain fatty acids (SCFAs), are known to be involved in the development of hypertension. We examined whether maternal and post-weaning high-fat (HF) diet-induced hypertension in adult male offspring is related to alterations of gut microbiota, mediation of SCFAs and their receptors, and downregulation of nutrient-sensing signals. Female Sprague–Dawley rats received either a normal diet (ND) or HF diet (D12331, Research Diets) during pregnancy and lactation. Male offspring were put on either the ND or HF diet from weaning to 16 weeks of age, and designated to four groups (maternal diet/post-weaning diet; n = 8/group): ND/ND, HF/ND, ND/HF, and HF/HF. Rats were sacrificed at 16 weeks of age. Combined HF/HF diets induced elevated blood pressure (BP) and increased body weight and kidney damage in male adult offspring. The rise in BP is related to a downregulated AMP-activated protein kinase (AMPK)–peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor co-activator 1α (PGC-1α) pathway. Additionally, HF/HF diets decreased fecal concentrations of propionate and butyrate and decreased G protein-coupled receptor 41 (GPR41), but increased olfactory receptor 78 (Oflr78) expression. Maternal HF diet has differential programming effects on the offspring’s microbiota at 3 and 16 weeks of age. Combined HF/HF diet induced BP elevation was associated with an increased Firmicutes to Bacteroidetes ratio, increased abundance of genus Akkermansia and phylum Verrucomicrobia, and reduced abundance in genus Lactobacillus. Maternal gut microbiota-targeted dietary interventions might be reprogramming strategies to protect against programmed hypertension in children and their mothers on consumption of a fat-rich diet. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Lactobacillus reuteri V3401 Reduces Inflammatory Biomarkers and Modifies the Gastrointestinal Microbiome in Adults with Metabolic Syndrome: The PROSIR Study
Nutrients 2019, 11(8), 1761; https://doi.org/10.3390/nu11081761 - 31 Jul 2019
Cited by 9
Abstract
Previous studies have reported that probiotics may improve clinical and inflammatory parameters in patients with obesity and metabolic syndrome (MetS). Lactobacillus (L.) reuteri V3401 has shown promising results on the components of MetS in animal studies. We aimed to evaluate the effects of [...] Read more.
Previous studies have reported that probiotics may improve clinical and inflammatory parameters in patients with obesity and metabolic syndrome (MetS). Lactobacillus (L.) reuteri V3401 has shown promising results on the components of MetS in animal studies. We aimed to evaluate the effects of L. reuteri V3401 together with healthy lifestyle recommendations on adult patients with MetS. Methods: We carried out a randomized, crossover, placebo-controlled, single-center trial in which we included 53 adult patients newly diagnosed with MetS. Patients were block randomly allocated by body mass index (BMI) and sex to receive a capsule containing either the probiotic L. reuteri V3401 (5 × 109 colony-forming units) or a placebo once daily for 12 weeks. Anthropometric variables, biochemical and inflammatory biomarkers, as well as the gastrointestinal microbiome composition were determined. Results: There were no differences between groups in the clinical characteristics of MetS. However, we found that interleukin-6 (IL-6) and soluble vascular cell adhesion molecule 1 (sVCAM-1) diminished by effect of the treatment with L. reuteri V3401. Analysis of the gastrointestinal microbiome revealed a rise in the proportion of Verrucomicrobia. Conclusions: Consumption of L. reuteri V3401 improved selected inflammatory parameters and modified the gastrointestinal microbiome. Further studies are needed to ascertain additional beneficial effects of other probiotic strains in MetS as well as the mechanisms by which such effects are exerted. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Probiotic Ingestion, Obesity, and Metabolic-Related Disorders: Results from NHANES, 1999–2014
Nutrients 2019, 11(7), 1482; https://doi.org/10.3390/nu11071482 - 28 Jun 2019
Cited by 6
Abstract
Gut microbiota dysbiosis has been recognized as having key importance in obesity- and metabolic-related diseases. Although there is increasing evidence of the potential benefits induced by probiotics in metabolic disturbances, there is a lack of large cross-sectional studies to assess population-based prevalence of [...] Read more.
Gut microbiota dysbiosis has been recognized as having key importance in obesity- and metabolic-related diseases. Although there is increasing evidence of the potential benefits induced by probiotics in metabolic disturbances, there is a lack of large cross-sectional studies to assess population-based prevalence of probiotic intake and metabolic diseases. Our aim was to evaluate the association of probiotic ingestion with obesity, type 2 diabetes, hypertension, and dyslipidemia. A cross-sectional study was designed using data from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES), 1999–2014. Probiotic ingestion was considered when a subject reported consumption of yogurt or a probiotic supplement during the 24-h dietary recall or during the Dietary Supplement Use 30-Day questionnaire. We included 38,802 adults and 13.1% reported probiotic ingestion. The prevalence of obesity and hypertension was lower in the probiotic group (obesity-adjusted Odds Ratio (OR): 0.84, 95% CI 0.76–0.92, p < 0.001; hypertension-adjusted OR: 0.79, 95% CI 0.71–0.88, p < 0.001). Accordingly, even after analytic adjustments, body mass index (BMI) was significantly lower in the probiotic group, as were systolic and diastolic blood pressure and triglycerides; high-density lipoprotein (HDL) was significantly higher in the probiotic group for the adjusted model. In this large-scale study, ingestion of probiotic supplements or yogurt was associated with a lower prevalence of obesity and hypertension. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Aerobic Exercise Training with Brisk Walking Increases Intestinal Bacteroides in Healthy Elderly Women
Nutrients 2019, 11(4), 868; https://doi.org/10.3390/nu11040868 - 17 Apr 2019
Cited by 16
Abstract
This study examined the effect of an exercise intervention on the composition of the intestinal microbiota in healthy elderly women. Thirty-two sedentary women that were aged 65 years and older participated in a 12-week, non-randomized comparative trial. The subjects were allocated to two [...] Read more.
This study examined the effect of an exercise intervention on the composition of the intestinal microbiota in healthy elderly women. Thirty-two sedentary women that were aged 65 years and older participated in a 12-week, non-randomized comparative trial. The subjects were allocated to two groups receiving different exercise interventions, trunk muscle training (TM), or aerobic exercise training (AE). AE included brisk walking, i.e., at an intensity of ≥ 3 metabolic equivalents (METs). The composition of the intestinal microbiota in fecal samples was determined before and after the training period. We also assessed the daily physical activity using an accelerometer, trunk muscle strength by the modified Kraus–Weber (K-W) test, and cardiorespiratory fitness by a 6-min. walk test (6MWT). K-W test scores and distance achieved during the 6MWT (6MWD) improved in both groups. The relative abundance of intestinal Bacteroides only significantly increased in the AE group, particularly in subjects showing increases in the time spent in brisk walking. Overall, the increases in intestinal Bacteroides following the exercise intervention were associated with increases in 6MWD. In conclusion, aerobic exercise training that targets an increase of the time spent in brisk walking may increase intestinal Bacteroides in association with improved cardiorespiratory fitness in healthy elderly women. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Diet Supplemented with Antioxidant and Anti-Inflammatory Probiotics Improves Sperm Quality after Only One Spermatogenic Cycle in Zebrafish Model
Nutrients 2019, 11(4), 843; https://doi.org/10.3390/nu11040843 - 13 Apr 2019
Cited by 6
Abstract
Infertility is a medical concern worldwide and could also have economic consequences in farmed animals. Developing an efficient diet supplement with immediate effects on sperm quality is a promising tool for human reproduction and for domesticated animal species. This study aims at elucidating [...] Read more.
Infertility is a medical concern worldwide and could also have economic consequences in farmed animals. Developing an efficient diet supplement with immediate effects on sperm quality is a promising tool for human reproduction and for domesticated animal species. This study aims at elucidating the effect of a short-time probiotic supplementation consisting of a mixture of two probiotic bacteria with proven antioxidant and anti-inflammatory activities on zebrafish sperm quality and male behavior. For this purpose, three homogeneous groups of males in terms of motility (<60%) were established. The control group was fed with a normal standard diet. The other received supplements: One group (vehicle control) was fed with maltodextrin and the other received a probiotic preparation based on a mixture (1:1) of Lactobacillus rhamnosus CECT8361 and Bifidobacterium longum CECT7347. The feeding regime was 21 days corresponding with a single spermatogenesis in zebrafish. The preparation did not modify animal weight, positively affected the number of fluent males, increased sperm concentration, total motility, progressive motility, and fast spermatozoa subpopulations. Moreover, the animals fed with the supplement showed different behavior patterns compared to control groups. Our results suggest a diet-related modulation on the exploration activity indicating a lower stress-like conduct. The studied formulation described here should be considered as advantageous in male reproductive biotechnology. Full article
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Review

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Open AccessReview
Plausible Biological Interactions of Low- and Non-Calorie Sweeteners with the Intestinal Microbiota: An Update of Recent Studies
Nutrients 2020, 12(4), 1153; https://doi.org/10.3390/nu12041153 - 21 Apr 2020
Cited by 8
Abstract
Sweeteners that are a hundred thousand times sweeter than sucrose are being consumed as sugar substitutes. The effects of sweeteners on gut microbiota composition have not been completely elucidated yet, and numerous gaps related to the effects of nonnutritive sweeteners (NNS) on health [...] Read more.
Sweeteners that are a hundred thousand times sweeter than sucrose are being consumed as sugar substitutes. The effects of sweeteners on gut microbiota composition have not been completely elucidated yet, and numerous gaps related to the effects of nonnutritive sweeteners (NNS) on health still remain. The NNS aspartame and acesulfame-K do not interact with the colonic microbiota, and, as a result, potentially expected shifts in the gut microbiota are relatively limited, although acesulfame-K intake increases Firmicutes and depletes Akkermansia muciniphila populations. On the other hand, saccharin and sucralose provoke changes in the gut microbiota populations, while no health effects, either positive or negative, have been described; hence, further studies are needed to clarify these observations. Steviol glycosides might directly interact with the intestinal microbiota and need bacteria for their metabolization, thus they could potentially alter the bacterial population. Finally, the effects of polyols, which are sugar alcohols that can reach the colonic microbiota, are not completely understood; polyols have some prebiotics properties, with laxative effects, especially in patients with inflammatory bowel syndrome. In this review, we aimed to update the current evidence about sweeteners’ effects on and their plausible biological interactions with the gut microbiota. Full article
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Open AccessReview
The Gut Microbiota and Its Implication in the Development of Atherosclerosis and Related Cardiovascular Diseases
Nutrients 2020, 12(3), 605; https://doi.org/10.3390/nu12030605 - 26 Feb 2020
Cited by 12
Abstract
The importance of gut microbiota in health and disease is being highlighted by numerous research groups worldwide. Atherosclerosis, the leading cause of heart disease and stroke, is responsible for about 50% of all cardiovascular deaths. Recently, gut dysbiosis has been identified as a [...] Read more.
The importance of gut microbiota in health and disease is being highlighted by numerous research groups worldwide. Atherosclerosis, the leading cause of heart disease and stroke, is responsible for about 50% of all cardiovascular deaths. Recently, gut dysbiosis has been identified as a remarkable factor to be considered in the pathogenesis of cardiovascular diseases (CVDs). In this review, we briefly discuss how external factors such as dietary and physical activity habits influence host-microbiota and atherogenesis, the potential mechanisms of the influence of gut microbiota in host blood pressure and the alterations in the prevalence of those bacterial genera affecting vascular tone and the development of hypertension. We will also be examining the microbiota as a therapeutic target in the prevention of CVDs and the beneficial mechanisms of probiotic administration related to cardiovascular risks. All these new insights might lead to novel analysis and CVD therapeutics based on the microbiota. Full article
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Open AccessReview
Reviewing the Composition of Vaginal Microbiota: Inclusion of Nutrition and Probiotic Factors in the Maintenance of Eubiosis
Nutrients 2020, 12(2), 419; https://doi.org/10.3390/nu12020419 - 06 Feb 2020
Cited by 5
Abstract
The vaginal microbiota has importance in preserving vaginal health and defending the host against disease. The advent of new molecular techniques and computer science has allowed researchers to discover microbial composition in depth and associate the structure of vaginal microbial communities. There is [...] Read more.
The vaginal microbiota has importance in preserving vaginal health and defending the host against disease. The advent of new molecular techniques and computer science has allowed researchers to discover microbial composition in depth and associate the structure of vaginal microbial communities. There is a consensus that vaginal flora is grouped into a restricted number of communities, although the structure of the community is constantly changing. Certain Community-State Types (CSTs) are more associated with poor reproductive outcomes and sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) meanwhile, CSTs dominated by Lactobacillus species—particularly Lactobacillus crispatus—are more related to vaginal health. In this work, we have reviewed how modifiable and non-modifiable factors may affect normal vaginal microbiota homeostasis—including sexual behavior, race or ethnicity, and hygiene. Special interest has been given to how the use of probiotics, diet intake, and use of hormone replacement therapies (HRTs) can potentially impact vaginal microbiota composition. Full article
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Open AccessReview
Current Knowledge about the Effect of Nutritional Status, Supplemented Nutrition Diet, and Gut Microbiota on Hepatic Ischemia-Reperfusion and Regeneration in Liver Surgery
Nutrients 2020, 12(2), 284; https://doi.org/10.3390/nu12020284 - 21 Jan 2020
Cited by 3
Abstract
Ischemia-reperfusion (I/R) injury is an unresolved problem in liver resection and transplantation. The preexisting nutritional status related to the gut microbial profile might contribute to primary non-function after surgery. Clinical studies evaluating artificial nutrition in liver resection are limited. The optimal nutritional regimen [...] Read more.
Ischemia-reperfusion (I/R) injury is an unresolved problem in liver resection and transplantation. The preexisting nutritional status related to the gut microbial profile might contribute to primary non-function after surgery. Clinical studies evaluating artificial nutrition in liver resection are limited. The optimal nutritional regimen to support regeneration has not yet been exactly defined. However, overnutrition and specific diet factors are crucial for the nonalcoholic or nonalcoholic steatohepatitis liver diseases. Gut-derived microbial products and the activation of innate immunity system and inflammatory response, leading to exacerbation of I/R injury or impaired regeneration after resection. This review summarizes the role of starvation, supplemented nutrition diet, nutritional status, and alterations in microbiota on hepatic I/R and regeneration. We discuss the most updated effects of nutritional interventions, their ability to alter microbiota, some of the controversies, and the suitability of these interventions as potential therapeutic strategies in hepatic resection and transplantation, overall highlighting the relevance of considering the extended criteria liver grafts in the translational liver surgery. Full article
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Open AccessReview
The Evolving Microbiome from Pregnancy to Early Infancy: A Comprehensive Review
Nutrients 2020, 12(1), 133; https://doi.org/10.3390/nu12010133 - 02 Jan 2020
Cited by 7
Abstract
Pregnancy induces a number of immunological, hormonal, and metabolic changes that are necessary for the mother to adapt her body to this new physiological situation. The microbiome of the mother, the placenta and the fetus influence the fetus growth and undoubtedly plays a [...] Read more.
Pregnancy induces a number of immunological, hormonal, and metabolic changes that are necessary for the mother to adapt her body to this new physiological situation. The microbiome of the mother, the placenta and the fetus influence the fetus growth and undoubtedly plays a major role in the adequate development of the newborn infant. Hence, the microbiome modulates the inflammatory mechanisms related to physiological and pathological processes that are involved in the perinatal progress through different mechanisms. The present review summarizes the actual knowledge related to physiological changes in the microbiota occurring in the mother, the fetus, and the child, both during neonatal period and beyond. In addition, we approach some specific pathological situations during the perinatal periods, as well as the influence of the type of delivery and feeding. Full article
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Open AccessReview
Xylitol’s Health Benefits beyond Dental Health: A Comprehensive Review
Nutrients 2019, 11(8), 1813; https://doi.org/10.3390/nu11081813 - 06 Aug 2019
Cited by 9
Abstract
Xylitol has been widely documented to have dental health benefits, such as reducing the risk for dental caries. Here we report on other health benefits that have been investigated for xylitol. In skin, xylitol has been reported to improve barrier function and suppress [...] Read more.
Xylitol has been widely documented to have dental health benefits, such as reducing the risk for dental caries. Here we report on other health benefits that have been investigated for xylitol. In skin, xylitol has been reported to improve barrier function and suppress the growth of potential skin pathogens. As a non-digestible carbohydrate, xylitol enters the colon where it is fermented by members of the colonic microbiota; species of the genus Anaerostipes have been reported to ferment xylitol and produce butyrate. The most common Lactobacillus and Bifidobacterium species do not appear to be able to grow on xylitol. The non-digestible but fermentable nature of xylitol also contributes to a constipation relieving effect and improved bone mineral density. Xylitol also modulates the immune system, which, together with its antimicrobial activity contribute to a reduced respiratory tract infection, sinusitis, and otitis media risk. As a low caloric sweetener, xylitol may contribute to weight management. It has been suggested that xylitol also increases satiety, but these results are not convincing yet. The benefit of xylitol on metabolic health, in addition to the benefit of the mere replacement of sucrose, remains to be determined in humans. Additional health benefits of xylitol have thus been reported and indicate further opportunities but need to be confirmed in human studies. Full article
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Open AccessEditor’s ChoiceReview
Gut Microbiome: Profound Implications for Diet and Disease
Nutrients 2019, 11(7), 1613; https://doi.org/10.3390/nu11071613 - 16 Jul 2019
Cited by 74
Abstract
The gut microbiome plays an important role in human health and influences the development of chronic diseases ranging from metabolic disease to gastrointestinal disorders and colorectal cancer. Of increasing prevalence in Western societies, these conditions carry a high burden of care. Dietary patterns [...] Read more.
The gut microbiome plays an important role in human health and influences the development of chronic diseases ranging from metabolic disease to gastrointestinal disorders and colorectal cancer. Of increasing prevalence in Western societies, these conditions carry a high burden of care. Dietary patterns and environmental factors have a profound effect on shaping gut microbiota in real time. Diverse populations of intestinal bacteria mediate their beneficial effects through the fermentation of dietary fiber to produce short-chain fatty acids, endogenous signals with important roles in lipid homeostasis and reducing inflammation. Recent progress shows that an individual’s starting microbial profile is a key determinant in predicting their response to intervention with live probiotics. The gut microbiota is complex and challenging to characterize. Enterotypes have been proposed using metrics such as alpha species diversity, the ratio of Firmicutes to Bacteroidetes phyla, and the relative abundance of beneficial genera (e.g., Bifidobacterium, Akkermansia) versus facultative anaerobes (E. coli), pro-inflammatory Ruminococcus, or nonbacterial microbes. Microbiota composition and relative populations of bacterial species are linked to physiologic health along different axes. We review the role of diet quality, carbohydrate intake, fermentable FODMAPs, and prebiotic fiber in maintaining healthy gut flora. The implications are discussed for various conditions including obesity, diabetes, irritable bowel syndrome, inflammatory bowel disease, depression, and cardiovascular disease. Full article
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