Gut Bacteria in Infancy May Have Long Lasting Effects on Weight

Senior Principal Investigator - Systems Biology Singapore Institute for Clinical Sciences Brenner Centre for Molecular Medicine Singapore MedicalResearch.com Interview with:
Joanna Holbrook PhD
Senior Principal Investigator – Systems Biology
Singapore Institute for Clinical Sciences
Brenner Centre for Molecular Medicine
Singapore


Medical Research: What is the background for this study?

Dr. Holbrook: Bacteria in the human gut may influence many aspects of our health; however, it is not fully known what determines the composition of the gut microbiota. Rapid bacterial colonisation of the infant gut could be influenced by the environment of the baby before birth, and microbiota content has been associated with the development of obesity and insulin resistance.

Medical Research: What are the main findings?

Dr. Holbrook: The rate of bacterial colonisation of the gut is influenced by external factors such as the method of delivery and duration of gestation. Also, infants with a mature gut bacteria profile at an early age gained normal levels of body fat, while infants with less mature gut bacteria profiles displayed a tendency to gain lower levels of body fat at the age of 18 months, indicating that gut bacteria could be related to normal development and healthy weight gain.

Medical Research: What should clinicians and patients take away from your report?

Dr. Holbrook: Epidemiological data has linked what happens to us very early in life with our health later in life. The mechanisms for this are not yet known; how do our bodies remember our earliest experiences in a way that impacts health issues like our weight? This work suggests that one of the mechanisms for the transmission of early life experience to later life health is the seeding of our gut microbiota.

Medical Research: What recommendations do you have for future research as a result of this study?

Dr. Holbrook: This study is an important example of how influences before and after birth have a lasting effect on the growth and development of the child. The findings will help design future interventions aimed at optimising early development, with benefits for lifelong health.

Citation:

MBio. 2015 Feb 3;6(1). pii: e02419-14. doi: 10.1128/mBio.02419-14.

Dynamics of infant gut microbiota are influenced by delivery mode and gestational duration and are associated with subsequent adiposity.

Dogra S1, Sakwinska O2, Soh SE3, Ngom-Bru C2, Brück WM2, Berger B2, Brüssow H2, Lee YS, Yap F4, Chong YS, Godfrey KM5, Holbrook JD6.

 

MedicalResearch.com Interview with:, & Joanna Holbrook PhD (2015). Gut Bacteria in Infancy May Have Long Lasting Effects on Weight http://MedicalResearch.com