Friday, May 26, 2017

Some Things to Know About Your Gut Microbiota

If you read my previous post on tyhpoid fever's ability to inhibit the mammalian anorexic response, which as a facet of the innate immune system attempts to starve out bacterial invaders, then you'll notice that there is a bit of a gut microbes theme here.

Regardless, below are some neat facts about the microbes in your gut, gathered from this review paper from Cell:
  • Certain bacteria, like Christensenellaceae, proliferate in hosts with low body mass indices, and when cultivated in mouse models, cause a reduction in weight gain. This could signal a some epigenetic and phenotypic bacteria-host relations, as well as some element of heredity because Christensenellaceae is, according to the authors, one of the most heritable gut bacteria.
  • Your original microbiota is inherited from your parents, but becomes fixed during your early childhood. That means that the diversity of bacteria within your gut doesn't undergo any significant development past childhood, and that if for some reason (perhaps because of intense antibiotics) some of the bacteria is wiped out, it is possible that it will not ever return to its pervious state. 
  • The microbiota of mice models were observed after some mice were fed a "Western" diet, that was high in fats and simple carbohydrates and others were fed a "Traditional" diet. Those that were fed a "Traditional" diet had higher microbiota diversity.
To learn more specifics about how these results were determined and to learn more about host-associated microbial communities, read the article linked above.

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