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World Microbiome Day 2022: Celebrating the microbial world


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June 27 is World Microbiome Day and this year’s theme is “Celebration of the microbial world”, which aims to spread awareness about the value of microbiomes on every aspect of humanity.

Microbiomes have many essential functions in the environment — from the trillions of microorganisms that live in our bodies to those living in the soil, microbiomes actively contribute to cleaning the environment, sustaining food systems, mitigating climate change and keeping the body healthy.

World microbiome day

In the human body specifically, the microbiome helps to fight off infection and digest food as well as produce vitamins and hormones. According to APC Microbiome Ireland, 95% of our microbiota is in the gastrointestinal tract, and nearly 90% of disease can in some way be linked back to the gut and health of the microbiome.

In celebration of World Microbiome Day, Healio presents the following roundup of recent stories on the microbiome.

VIDEO: Microbiome wipe aims to simplify, encourage at-home gut health testing

In this Healio video exclusive, Nathan Price, PhD, chief scientific officer at Thorne HealthTech, discusses the development of a new microbiome wipe that could change the landscape of at-home gut health testing.

According to Price, an existing barrier for at-home testing has been the stool collection process, which involves transferring a fecal sample into a vile. Seeking an easier way to collect the sample, Price and his team developed a polymer-based wipe. Read more.

VIDEO: RBX2660 restores microbiome, bile acid composition in C. difficile infection

RBX2660, an investigational live biotherapeutic, restored microbiome and bile acid composition concurrent with clinical response in patients with Clostridioides difficile, according to research at Digestive Disease Week 2022.

“This poster is three different takes on how RBX2660 is aimed at restoring the microbiome and the data that we saw in three clinical trials,” Ken Blount, PhD, chief scientific officer at Rebiotix, a Ferring company, and vice president of microbiome research at Ferring Pharmaceuticals, said in a Healio video exclusive. “This is the largest analysis of its kind — we’ve combined three different clinical trials including two large, randomized, double-blinded, placebo-controlled trials. We’re very proud to report that this is a poster of distinction.” Read more.

Gut microbiome may influence cardiometabolic health disparities for women

Researchers identified differences in gut microbiome that may influence cardiometabolic health disparities between Black and white women with insulin resistance, according to a pilot cross-sectional study data published in PLOS ONE.

“The majority of microbiome studies in Black women have focused on the vaginal microbiome in relation to fertility and reproductive health,” Candace A. Price, PhD, assistant adjunct professor of molecular biosciences at the University of California, Davis, School of Veterinary Medicine, and colleagues wrote. “To our knowledge, only three studies have examined gut bacteria from fecal samples of Black women. Of these, only one compared bacteria profiles between overweight, pre- and postmenopausal Black and white women.” Read more.

Duodenal microbiome differences may raise CVD risk in postmenopausal women not on hormone therapy

Postmenopausal women taking hormone therapy have a duodenal microbiome similar to younger women and a lower abundance of taxa associated with cardiovascular disease risk compared with those not taking HT, researchers reported.

In an analysis of data from participants in the Revealing the Entire Intestinal Microbiota and its Associations with the Genetic, Immunologic, and Neuroendocrine Ecosystem (REIMAGINE) study, postmenopausal women not taking HT had decreased duodenal microbial diversity compared with postmenopausal women taking HT and reproductive-age women not taking exogenous hormones. The decreased microbial diversity was associated with lower total testosterone and higher fasting glucose in women not taking HT. Read more.

Q&A: Gut microbiome may support patient response to immune checkpoint inhibitor treatment

Research suggests the gut microbiome plays a role in response to cancer immunotherapy, according to a study published in Nature Medicine.

The composition of the gut microbiome previously has been associated with clinical response to immune checkpoint inhibitor (ICI) treatment, but there is limited consensus on the specific link between the microbiome and clinical benefits. Read more.

Drug that targets gut metabolites safe, effective for adolescents with autism

An oral medication that targets metabolites in the gut is both safe and well-tolerated for adolescents with autism spectrum disorder, according to results of a clinical trial published in Nature Medicine.

“As we continue to advance AB-2004 through clinical development, we are excited to share these results which continue to support our previously published scientific research and preclinical data on the role of the gut-brain axis and its impact on neurological conditions,” A. Stewart Campbell, PhD, chief executive officer and head of research and development of Axial Therapeutics, said in a press release related to the study. “We strongly believe that AB-2004 can improve the quality of life of many children with autism.” Read more.

Microbiome status unrelated to current celiac disease activity, severity

Pre-existing fecal microbiome diversity was unaffected by gluten challenge in patients with celiac disease and nonceliac gluten sensitivity, according to data published in Clinical and Translational Gastroenterology.

“Investigations of celiac disease have posited a role of the gut microbiome in multiple aspects of disease development and progression,” Yael R. Nobel, MD, a gastroenterology and hepatology fellow at Columbia University Irving Medical Center in New York City, and colleagues wrote. “Certain taxa, including Bifidobacterium and Clostridial species such as Faecalibacterium prausnitzii, have decreased abundance in patients with active CD or treated CD compared with controls.” Read more.

VIDEO: Microbiome Health Index predicts post-antibiotic dysbiosis

The Microbiome Health Index for post-antibiotic dysbiosis was a promising biomarker for predicting antibiotic dysbiosis and subsequent microbiome restoration, according to research published in Frontiers of Microbiology.

“It’s very important that we maintain a healthy microbiome, but there are things that can disrupt or perturb a healthy microbiome to a less healthy state, which we term dysbiosis,” Ken Blount, PhD, chief scientific officer at Rebiotix, a Ferring company, and vice president of microbiome research at Ferring Pharmaceuticals, said in a Healio video exclusive. “We know that antibiotics are an important part of health care practice, but recently, we’re also recognizing that broad-spectrum antibiotics can have collateral impact by inhibiting some of the good bacteria that make up our gut microbiome.” Read more.

VIDEO: Changes in duodenal microbiome linked to aging

In a Healio video exclusive, Ruchi Mathur, MD, of the Medically Associated Science and Technology Program at Cedars-Sinai in Los Angeles, discussed how the aging process is associated with changes to the small intestinal microbiome.

Mathur and colleagues studied duodenal aspirates in 251 patients, aged 18 to 80 years, and observed decreased microbial diversity in older patients, driven by increased relative abundance of phylum Proteobacteria. Further, along with chronologic age, changes in taxa also correlated with certain medications and diseases. Read more.

Reference:

The theme for World Microbiome Day 2022 is “Celebration of the microbial world.” World Microbiome Day. Available at: https://worldmicrobiomeday.com/. Accessed: June 27, 2022.



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