Real time in vivo methods are needed to better understand the interplay between diet and the gastrointestinal microbiota. Therefore, a rodent indirect calorimetry system was equipped with hydrogen (H2) and methane (CH4) sensors. H2 production was readily detected in C57BL/6J mice and followed a circadian rhythm. H2 production was increased within 12 hours after first exposure to a lowly-digestible starch diet (LDD) compared to a highly-digestible starch diet (HDD). Marked differences were observed in the faecal microbiota of animals fed the LDD and HDD diets. H2 was identified as a key variable explaining the variation in microbial communities, with specific taxa (including Bacteroides and Parasutterella) correlating with H2 production upon LDD-feeding. CH4 production was undetectable which was in line with absence of CH4 producers in the gut. We conclude that real-time in vivo monitoring of gases provides a non-invasive time-resolved system to explore the interplay between nutrition and gut microbes in a mouse model, and demonstrates potential for translation to other animal models and human studies.
Non-invasive continuous real-time in vivo analysis of microbial hydrogen production shows adaptation to fermentable carbohydrates in mice
Fernández Calleja, J. M. S. (Creator), Konstanti, P. (Creator), Swarts, J. J. M. (Creator), Bouwman, L. (Creator), Garcia-Campayo, V. (Creator), Billecke, N. (Creator), Oosting, A. (Creator), Smidt, H. (Creator), Keijer, J. (Creator) & van Schothorst, E. (Creator), Wageningen University, 5 Mar 2018