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Some Gut Bacteria Appear To Influence Liver Metabolism

March 1, 2011: 09:16 AM EST
A multinational team of researchers has found that some intestinal bacteria are not only important to food digestion, they also appear to exert some influence over the metabolic functions of other organs. For the study, researchers observed germ-free mice who had been exposed to mice with normal gut microbiota. Over five days the exposed mice gained weight, but the gut bacteria also triggered several processes in the liver in which sugars are converted into starch and fat for storage. The researchers said this was the first time that an association has been found between a family of bacteria (Coriobacteriaceae) and hepatic liver metabolism.
Sandrine P. Clausa, et al., "Colonization-Induced Host-Gut Microbial Metabolic Interaction", mBio, March 01, 2011, © The Authors
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