Microbiome Bites October 23rd
1. Migraines could be caused by gut bacteria
Researchers in a study published in the journal mSystems this week, sampled oral and gut microbiomes of volunteers and found that migraine sufferers had higher levels of bacteria involved in processing nitrates. Nitrates are and could explain why some foods appear to act as migraine triggers. Read the Guardian article here and the original research article here.
2. Probiotics may help spinal cord injury recovery
Beside the obvious effects of traumatic spinal cord injuries, lesser-known secondary effects occur. These secondary effects can include the loss of bowel control, which may cause dysbiosis of the gut microbiome. In a study published in The Journal of Experimental Medicine researchers found that mice that were treated with antibiotics to alter their gut microbiomes before spinal cord injury showed higher levels of spinal inflammation. These mice also recovered poorly from their injuries. Conversely, injured mice that were given a daily probiotic had less spinal damage and regained more movement. The probiotic (VSL#3) fed to the mice contained large numbers of lactic acid producing bacteria, which activated a gut-associated immune cell that can inhibit inflammation. You can read the original research article here.
3. How gut microbiota determine risk for celiac disease
40% of people carry the genetic susceptibility to celiac disease; yet only 2-4% develop the disease. Little is known about what other factors increase risk, but dysbiosis of the gut microbiome has been shown in patients. Namely, increased Proteobacteria and decreased Lactobacillus. In a study published in the journal Gastroenterology researchers researchers propose that pathogens such as Pseudomonas aeruginosa in the small intestine may contribute to development of celiac disease through their pattern of metabolism of gluten. Read the overview here and the original research article here.