Breakthrough discovery: Key genes revealed in probiotic B. longum, paving the way for targeted constipation relief


Gastrointestinal motility problems are related to intestinal microbial dysbiosis, characterized by a decrease in beneficial microorganisms, some of which are probiotics.
Image credit: Shutterstock

Texas: Researchers have identified specific genes within the probiotic Bifidobacterium longum that improve intestinal motility, potentially reducing constipation. The study, published in the journal Cell Host & Microbe, reveals that B. longum strains with the abfA gene cluster play a key role in promoting intestinal utilization of arabinan, a non-digestible fiber.

Qixiao Zhai, co-senior author of the paper and researcher at Jiangnan University, explains: “We established the causal link between a genetic variant (the abfA cluster) and the key functional difference of the probiotic B. longum in multiple model organisms, including mice and humans. , providing mechanistic and ecological insights into how a single gene cluster can affect host intestinal motility through Arabian metabolism.”

Gastrointestinal motility problems are related to intestinal microbial dysbiosis, characterized by a decrease in beneficial microorganisms, some of which are probiotics. Although probiotics are commonly used to relieve symptoms, their effectiveness varies between strains of the same species. The study aims to address the elusive mechanisms behind this variability.

Gastrointestinal motility

Jiachao Zhang, second lead co-author of the study from Hainan University, highlights the need for “proof-of-concept studies based on a human cohort in combination with evidence from animal studies” to guide translational research.

The researchers, including Shi Huang from the University of Hong Kong, identified and validated key genetic factors affecting gastrointestinal motility by isolating 185 B. longum strains from 354 Chinese subjects. They found that the abfA group regulates constipation relief in mice by enhancing arabinan utilization.

Gene knockout experiments further validated the role of the abfA cluster in improving gastrointestinal transit time in constipated mice. A clinical trial and human-to-mouse fecal microbiota transplantation experiments, combined with metagenomics and metabolomics, confirmed the functional roles of the abfA group in relieving constipation in humans.

Therapeutic target for constipation in humans.

Supplementation with B. longum carrying abfA clusters enriched residents using arabin, increased beneficial metabolites, and improved constipation symptoms in the clinical trial. The prevalence of the abfA cluster in residents of the intestine suggests it as a potential therapeutic target for constipation in humans and a biomarker of gastrointestinal diseases.

Shi Huang emphasizes the broader implications of the study, stating, “Our proof-of-concept study also established generalizable principles for the rational development of colonizable functional probiotics with persistent treatment efficacy in multiple model organisms.”


UAE News Today :

UAE News Today : Latest UAE News, Dubai, Abu Dhabi, Sharjah & Middle East News : Get the latest updates & breaking headlines news from across the UAE including Dubai and Abu Dhabi UAE. Get the latest update on UAE, business, life style, UAE jobs, gold rate, Exchange rate, UAE holidays, Dubai police, RTA and prayer times from UAE's largest news.

Related Articles

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Back to top button