Fewer calories, healthier gut, longer life

Genetic Engineering & Biotechnology News: Emerging research continues to show that the microbes inhabiting the gut play pivotal roles in health and disease throughout life. Two recent studies highlight how gut microbiota affect their hosts over the long term.

The first, published today in Nature Communications, charts changes to microbial composition based on life-long caloric restriction. In it, Shanghai Jiao Tong University’s Liping Zhao, Ph.D., and his colleagues show that mice that were calorie-restricted on both high-fat or low-fat diets throughout their lives showed gut microbiota phylotypes that correlated positively with lifespan, such as Lactobacillus, as compared with their non-calorie-restricted counterparts.

“These calorie restriction-induced changes in the gut microbiota are concomitant with signifcantly reduced serum levels of lipopolysaccharide-binding protein, suggesting that animals under calorie restriction can establish a structurally balanced architecture of gut microbiota that may exert a health benefit to the host via reduction of antigen load from the gut,” Dr. Zhao et al. write. [Continue reading…]

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