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In vitro characterization of the impact of different substrates on metabolite production, energy extraction and composition of gut microbiota from lean and obese subjects

Author: Aguirre, M. · Jonkers, D.M.A.E. · Troost, F.J. · Roeselers, G. · Venema, K.
Type:article
Date:2014
Source:PLoS ONE, 11, 9
Identifier: 520741
doi: doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0113864
Article number: e113864
Keywords: Biology · Ammonia · Galactose oligosaccharide · Lactic acid · Lactulose · Pectin · Short chain fatty acid · Apple · Bacteroidetes · Case report · Energy yield · Fermentation · Fiber · Firmicutes · Human · In vitro study · Intestine flora · Lean body weight · Metabolite · Microbial community · Nonhuman · Obesity · Phylogeny · Biomedical Innovation · Healthy Living · Life · MSB - Microbiology and Systems Biology · ELSS - Earth, Life and Social Sciences

Abstract

The aim of this study was to investigate the effect of galacto-oligosaccharides, lactulose, apple fiber and sugar beet pectin on the composition and activity of human colonic microbiota of lean and obese healthy subjects using an in vitro model of the proximal colon: TIM-2. Substrate fermentation was assessed by measuring the production of short-chain and branched-chain fatty acids, lactate and ammonia and by studying the composition of the bacterial communities over time. The results suggest that energy harvest (in terms of metabolites) of lean and obese microbiotas is different and may depend on the fermentable substrate. For galactooligosaccharides and lactulose, the cumulative amount of short-chain fatty acids plus lactate produced in TIM-2 was lower in the fermentation experiments with the lean microbiota (123 and 155 mmol, respectively) compared to the obese (162 and 173 mmol, respectively). This was reversed for the pectin and the fiber. The absolute amount produced of short-chain fatty acids including lactate was higher after 72 h in the fermentation experiments with apple fiber-L (108 mmol) than with apple fiber-O (92 mmol). Sugar beet-L was also higher (130 mmol) compared to sugar beet-O (103 mmol). Galacto-oligosaccharides and lactulose boosted the balance of health-promoting over toxic metabolites produced by the microbiota from obese subjects. Firmicutes were more predominant in the inoculum prepared from feces of obese subjects compared to lean subjects. The average abundance at time zero was 92% and 74%, respectively. On the other hand, Bacteroidetes were more dominant in the microbiota prepared with homogenates from lean subjects with an average abundance of 22% compared with the microbiota prepared with homogenates from obese subjects (3.6%). This study brings evidence that different fermentable carbohydrates are fermented differently by lean and obese microbiotas, which contributes to the understanding of the role of diet and the microbiota in tackling obesity. Copyright: