Long-Term Diet Tied to Gut Microbe Enterotype Clustering

Protein, animal fat tied to Bacteroids, carbohydrates to Prevotella

MONDAY, Sept. 12 (HealthDay News) -- Long-term diet is strongly associated with specific enterotypes of gut microbiome, in particular protein and animal fat with Bacteroids, and carbohydrates with Prevotella, according to a study published online Sept. 1 in Science.

Gary D. Wu, M.D., from the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia, and colleagues investigated the association of dietary and environmental variables with gut microbiota. In the first phase, diet information was collected from 98 healthy volunteers using questionnaires that queried recent diet and habitual long-term diet. Stool samples were collected and DNA samples of 16S rDNA gene segments were analyzed by 454/Roche pyrosequencing. In the second phase, high-fat/low-fiber and low-fat/high-fiber diets were compared in 10 individuals in a short-term controlled-feeding study. Rectal biopsy samples were collected and analyzed for microbiome composition on days one and 10.

The investigators found that fecal communities clustered into enterotypes, which were mainly characterized by levels of Bacteroids and Prevotella. A strong association was observed between enterotypes and long-term diets, specifically protein and animal fat (Bacteroids) compared to carbohydrates (Prevotella). A noticeable change was observed in the gut microbiome composition of the 10 subjects in short-term controlled-feeding experiment within 24 hours of initiating a high-fat/low-fiber diet. This change was found to remain stable during the 10-day study.

"Comparison of long-term and short-term dietary data showed that only the long-term diet was correlated with enterotype clustering in the cross-sectional study," the authors write.

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