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Impact of Certain Gut Microbes on Body Composition and Metabolism

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In this study, the authors sought to examine the impact of certain gut microbes on body composition and metabolism. It has been previously reported that the microbial community composition is more similar between related individuals. Thus, the authors of this study used both monozygotic and dizygotic twin pairs that were “discordant” for obesity in that one of them was classified as obese while the other one was not, as a model for studying the correlation between gut microbiota and obesity and associated disorders. To do this, human fecal`microbes from each member of one of four discordant twin pairs was transplanted into mice that were germ-free. The authors also investigated which microbial taxa were more invasive, as well as the relationship between the phenotype of the host and invasiveness. They also examined how a human diet can impact on invasion and microbial niche. In order to examine this, mice that were coprophagic, meaning they consume fecal matter, were housed together. Using Unweighted Uni-Frac analysis of 16S ribosomal RNA (rRNA) they found that the transplant recipient mice acquired the microbial species (microbiota) of the human donor efficiently. Furthermore, comparing enzyme commission numbers (ECs) of the genes using a shotgun sequencing-based approach, it was found that the collection of microbrial genes (microbiome) of the human donor was also efficiently acquired by the recipient. These results were able to be reproduced. A data set using the 16S
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