Differential gene expression in iPSC-derived human intestinal epithelial cell layers following exposure to two concentrations of butyrate, propionate and acetate

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Abstract

Intestinal epithelial cells and the intestinal microbiota are in a mutualistic relationship that is dependent on communication. This communication is multifaceted, but one aspect is communication through compounds produced by the microbiota such as the short-chain fatty acids (SCFAs) butyrate, propionate and acetate. Studying the effects of SCFAs and especially butyrate in intestinal epithelial cell lines like Caco-2 cells has been proven problematic. In contrast to the in vivo intestinal epithelium, Caco-2 cells do not use butyrate as an energy source, leading to a build-up of butyrate. Therefore, we used human induced pluripotent stem cell derived intestinal epithelial cells, grown as a cell layer, to study the effects of butyrate, propionate and acetate on whole genome gene expression in the cells. For this, cells were exposed to concentrations of 1 and 10 mM of the individual short-chain fatty acids for 24 h. Unique gene expression profiles were observed for each of the SCFAs in a concentration-dependent manner. Evaluation on both an individual gene level and pathway level showed that butyrate induced the biggest effects followed by propionate and then acetate. Several known effects of SCFAs on intestinal cells were confirmed, such as effects on metabolism and immune responses. The changes in metabolic pathways in the intestinal epithelial cell layers in this study demonstrate that there is a switch in energy homeostasis, this is likely associated with the use of SCFAs as an energy source by the induced pluripotent stem cell derived intestinal epithelial cells similar to in vivo intestinal tissues where butyrate is an important energy source.

Original languageEnglish
Article number13988
JournalScientific Reports
Volume12
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2022

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