Publications by authors named "Ilario Ferrocino"

70 Publications

Specific metagenomic asset drives the spontaneous fermentation of Italian sausages.

Food Res Int 2021 Jun 29;144:110379. Epub 2021 Apr 29.

Department of Agricultural, Forest, and Food Sciences, University of Turin, Largo Paolo Braccini 2, 10095, Grugliasco, Torino, Italy. Electronic address:

Metagenomics is a powerful tool to study and understand the microbial dynamics that occur during food fermentation and allows to close the link between microbial diversity and final sensory characteristics. Each food matrix can be colonized by different microbes, but also by different strains of the same species. In this study, using an innovative integrated approach combining culture-dependent method with a shotgun sequencing, we were able to show how strain-level biodiversity could influence the quality characteristics of the final product. The attention was placed on a model food fermentation process: Salame Piemonte, a Protected Geographical Indication (PGI) Italian fermented sausage. Three independent batches produced in February, March and May 2018 were analysed. The sausages were manufactured, following the production specification, in a local meat factory in the area of Turin (Italy) without the use of starter cultures. A pangenomic approach was applied in order to identify and evaluate the lactic acid bacteria (LAB) population driving the fermentation process. It was observed that all batches were characterized by the presence of few LAB species, namely Pediococcus pentosaceus, Latilactobacillus curvatus and Latilactobacillus sakei. Sausages from the different batches were different when the volatilome was taken into consideration, and a strong association between quality attributes and strains present was determined. In particular, different strains of L. sakei, showing heterogeneity at genomic level, colonized the meat at the beginning of each production and deeply influenced the fermentation process by distinctive metabolic pathways that affected the fermentation process and the final sensory aspects.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.foodres.2021.110379DOI Listing
June 2021

Influence of taxonomic and functional content of microbial communities on the quality of fermented cocoa pulp-bean mass.

Appl Environ Microbiol 2021 May 14. Epub 2021 May 14.

Department of Agricultural, Forest, and Food Sciences, University of Turin, Largo Paolo Braccini 2, 10095, Grugliasco, Turin, Italy

The microbial metabolism drives the changes in the physico-chemical properties and consequently the sensory characteristics of fermented cocoa beans. In this context, information regarding the structure, function and metabolic potential of microbial communities' present during cocoa pulp-bean mass fermentation is limited, especially concerning the formation of aromatic compounds. To bridge the gap, the metagenome of fermented cocoa pulp-bean mass ( and ) has been investigated using shotgun metagenomics coupled with physico-chemical, microbiological, quality and sensory analysis to explore the impact of microbial communities on the quality of fermented cocoa pulp-bean mass on one farm in one season and in one region under the same environmental conditions. Our findings showed that the metagenomic diversity in cocoa, fermentation length, and the diversity and function of metagenome-assembled genomes (MAGs) greatly influence the resulting distinctive flavours. From the metabolic perspective, multiple indicators suggest that the heterolactic metabolism was more dominant in fermentations. KEGG genes were linked with the biosynthesis of acetic acid, ethanol, lactic acid, acetoin and phenylacetaldehyde during and fermentations. MAGs belonging to and were the most prevalent. The fermentation time and roasting are the most important determinants of cocoa quality while the difference between the two varieties are relatively minor. The assessment of microbiological and chemical analysis is an urgent need for developing fermentation protocols according to regions, countries and cocoa varieties to guarantee safety and desirable flavour development. Monitoring the composition, structure, functionalities and metabolic potential encoded at the level of DNA of fermented cocoa pulp-bean mass metagenome is of great importance for food safety and quality implications.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1128/AEM.00425-21DOI Listing
May 2021

Functional pangenome analysis reveals high virulence plasticity of Aliarcobacter butzleri and affinity to human mucus.

Genomics 2021 May 4;113(4):2065-2076. Epub 2021 May 4.

Department of Agricultural, Forest and Food Sciences (DISAFA), University of Turin, Italy. Electronic address:

Aliarcobacter butzleri is an emerging pathogen that may cause enteritis in humans, however, the incidence of disease caused by this member of the Campylobacteriaceae family is still underestimated. Furthermore, little is known about the precise virulence mechanism and behavior during infection. Therefore, in the present study, through complementary use of comparative genomics and physiological tests on human gut models, we sought to elucidate the genetic background of a set of 32 A. butzleri strains of diverse origin and to explore the correlation with the ability to colonize and invade human intestinal cells in vitro. The simulated infection of human intestinal models showed a higher colonization rate in presence of mucus-producing cells. For some strains, human mucus significantly improved the resistance to physical removal from the in vitro mucosa, while short time-frame growth was even observed. Pangenome analysis highlighted a hypervariable accessory genome, not strictly correlated to the isolation source. Likewise, the strain phylogeny was unrelated to their shared origin, despite a certain degree of segregation was observed among strains isolated from different segments of the intestinal tract of pigs. The putative virulence genes detected in all strains were mostly encompassed in the accessory fraction of the pangenome. The LPS biosynthesis and in particular the chain glycosylation of the O-antigen is harbored in a region of high plasticity of the pangenome, which would indicate frequent horizontal gene transfer phenomena, as well as the involvement of this hypervariable structure in the adaptive behavior and sympatric evolution of A. butzleri. Results of the present study deepen the current knowledge on A. butzleri pangenome by extending the pool of genes regarded as virulence markers and provide bases to develop new diagnostic approaches for the detection of those strains with a higher virulence potential.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.ygeno.2021.05.001DOI Listing
May 2021

Unravelling the Molecular Mechanisms Underlying the Protective Effect of Lactate on the High-Pressure Resistance of .

Biomolecules 2021 Apr 30;11(5). Epub 2021 Apr 30.

Department of Agricultural, Forest, and Food Science, University of Turin, Grugliasco 10095, Turin, Italy.

Formulations with lactate as an antimicrobial and high-pressure processing (HPP) as a lethal treatment are combined strategies used to control in cooked meat products. Previous studies have shown that when HPP is applied in products with lactate, the inactivation of is lower than that without lactate. The purpose of the present work was to identify the molecular mechanisms underlying the piezo-protection effect of lactate. Two strains (CTC1034 and EGDe) were independently inoculated in a cooked ham model medium without and with 2.8% potassium lactate. Samples were pressurized at 400 MPa for 10 min at 10 °C. Samples were subjected to RNA extraction, and a shotgun transcriptome sequencing was performed. The short exposure of cells to lactate through its inoculation in a cooked ham model with lactate 1h before HPP promoted a shift in the pathogen's central metabolism, favoring the metabolism of propanediol and ethanolamine together with the synthesis of the B12 cofactor. Moreover, the results suggest an activated methyl cycle that would promote modifications in membrane properties resulting in an enhanced resistance of the pathogen to HPP. This study provides insights on the mechanisms developed by in response to lactate and/or HPP and sheds light on the understanding of the piezo-protective effect of lactate.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/biom11050677DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8147161PMC
April 2021

Non-Celiac Gluten/Wheat Sensitivity: Clinical Characteristics and Microbiota and Mycobiota Composition by Response to the Gluten Challenge Test.

Nutrients 2021 Apr 12;13(4). Epub 2021 Apr 12.

Department of Medical Sciences, University of Torino, 10126 Torino, Italy.

The aims of this observational "proof-of-concept" study were to analyze the clinical/psychological characteristics and gut microbiota/mycobiota composition of individuals with suspected non-celiac gluten/wheat sensitivity (NCGS/WS) according to responses to the double-blind-placebo-controlled (DBPC) crossover gluten challenge test. Fifty individuals with suspected NCGS/WS were subjected to the DBPC challenge test; anthropometric measurements, psychometric questionnaires, and fecal samples were collected. Twenty-seven (54%) participants were gluten responsive (NCGS), and 23 were placebo responsive, with an order effect. NCGS individuals displayed a significantly lower risk of eating disorders and a higher mental health score when compared to placebo-responsive participants, confirmed by multiple logistic regression analyses (OR = 0.87; 95% CI 0.76-0.98, = 0.021, and OR = 1.30; 95% CI 1.06-1.59, = 0.009, respectively). Principal coordinate analyses based on microbiota composition showed a separation by the DBPC response ( = 0.039). For ( = 0.05) and ( = 0.007), the frequency of amplicon sequence variants was lower, and that for ( = 0.009) and ( = 0.004) was higher in NCGS individuals at multiple regression analyses. No difference in the mycobiota composition was detected between the groups. In conclusion, almost half of the individuals with suspected gluten sensitivity reported symptoms with placebo; they showed lower mental health scores, increased risk for eating disorders, and a different gut microbiota composition.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/nu13041260DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8070191PMC
April 2021

Microbial dynamics in rearing trials of Hermetia illucens larvae fed coffee silverskin and microalgae.

Food Res Int 2021 02 18;140:110028. Epub 2020 Dec 18.

Dipartimento di Scienze Agrarie, Alimentari ed Ambientali, Università Politecnica delle Marche, via Brecce Bianche, 60131 Ancona, Italy.

In the present study, Hermetia illucens larvae were reared on a main rearing substrate composed of a coffee roasting byproduct (coffee silverskin, Cs) enriched with microalgae (Schizochytrium limacinum or Isochrysis galbana) at various substitution levels. The microbial diversity of the rearing substrates, larvae, and frass (excrement from the larvae mixed with the substrate residue) were studied by the combination of microbial culturing on various growth media and metataxonomic analysis (Illumina sequencing). High counts of total mesophilic aerobes, bacterial spores, presumptive lactic acid bacteria, coagulase-positive cocci, and eumycetes were detected. Enterobacteriaceae counts were low in the rearing diets, whereas higher counts of this microbial family were observed in the larvae and frass. The microbiota of the rearing substrates was characterized by the presence of lactic acid bacteria, including the genera Lactobacillus, Leuconostoc and Weissella. The microbiota of the H. illucens larvae fed Cs was characterized by the dominance of Paenibacillus. H. illucens fed diets containing I. galbana were characterized by the presence of Enterococcus, Lysinibacillus, Morganella, and Paenibacillus, depending on the algae inclusion level, while H. illucens fed diets containing S. limacinum were characterized by high relative abundances of Brevundimonas, Enterococcus, Paracoccus, and Paenibacillus, depending on the algae inclusion level. Brevundimonas and Alcaligenes dominated in the frass from larvae fed I. galbana; the predominance of Brevundimonas was also observed in the frass from larvae fed Schyzochitrium-enriched diets. Based on the results of the present study, an effect of algae nutrient bioactive substances (e.g. polysaccharides, high-unsaturated fatty acids, taurine, carotenoids) on the relative abundance of some of the bacterial taxa detected in larvae may be hypothesized, thus opening new intriguing perspectives for the control of the entomopathogenic species and foodborne human pathogens potentially occurring in edible insects. Further studies are needed to support this hypothesis. Finally, new information on the microbial diversity occurring in insect frass was also obtained.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.foodres.2020.110028DOI Listing
February 2021

Monitoring and Surveillance of Aerial Mycobiota of Rice Paddy through DNA Metabarcoding and qPCR.

J Fungi (Basel) 2020 Dec 17;6(4). Epub 2020 Dec 17.

School of Natural and Environmental Sciences, Newcastle University, Newcastle upon Tyne NE1 7RU, UK.

The airborne mycobiota has been understudied in comparison with the mycobiota present in other agricultural environments. Traditional, culture-based methods allow the study of a small fraction of the organisms present in the atmosphere, thus missing important information. In this study, the aerial mycobiota in a rice paddy has been examined during the cropping season (from June to September 2016) using qPCRs for two important rice pathogens ( and ) and by using DNA metabarcoding of the fungal ITS region. The metabarcoding results demonstrated a higher alpha diversity (Shannon-Wiener diversity index H' and total number of observed species) at the beginning of the trial (June), suggesting a higher level of community complexity, compared with the end of the season. The main taxa identified by HTS analysis showed a shift in their relative abundance that drove the cluster separation as a function of time and temperature. The most abundant OTUs corresponded to genera such as , , or . Changes in the mycobiota composition were clearly dependent on the average air temperature with a potential impact on disease development in rice. In parallel, oligotyping analysis was performed to obtain a sub-OTU identification which revealed the presence of several oligotypes of and with relative abundance changing during monitoring.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/jof6040372DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7766667PMC
December 2020

Study of kefir drinks produced by backslopping method using kefir grains from Bosnia and Herzegovina: Microbial dynamics and volatilome profile.

Food Res Int 2020 11 1;137:109369. Epub 2020 Jun 1.

Dipartimento di Scienze Agrarie, Alimentari ed Ambientali, Università Politecnica delle Marche, Via Brecce Bianche, 60131 Ancona, Italy.

Kefir is a well-known health-promoting beverage that can be produced by using kefir grains (traditional method) or by using natural starter cultures from kefir (backslopping method). The aim of this study was to elucidate the microbial dynamics and volatilome profile occurring during kefir production through traditional and backslopping methods by using five kefir grains that were collected in Bosnia and Herzegovina. The results from conventional pour plating techniques and amplicon-based sequencing were combined. The kefir drinks have also been characterized in terms of their physico-chemical and colorimetric parameters. A bacterial shift from Lactobacillus kefiranofaciens to Acetobacter syzygii, Lactococcus lactis and Leuconostoc pseudomesenteroides from kefir grains in traditional kefir to backslopped kefir was generally observed. Despite some differences within samples, the dominant mycobiota of backslopped kefir samples remained quite similar to that of the kefir grain samples. However, unlike the lactic acid and acetic acid bacteria, the yeast counts decreased progressively from the grains to the backslopped kefir. The backslopped kefir samples showed higher protein, lactose and ash content and lower ethanol content compared to traditional kefir samples, coupled with optimal pH values that contribute to a pleasant sensory profile. Concerning the volatilome, backslopped kefir samples were correlated with cheesy, buttery, floral and fermented odors, whereas the traditional kefir samples were correlated with alcoholic, fruity, fatty and acid odors. Overall, the data obtained in the present study provided evidence that different kefir production methods (traditional vs backslopping) affect the quality characteristics of the final product. Hence, the functional traits of backslopped kefir should be further investigated in order to verify the suitability of a potential scale-up methodology for backslopping.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.foodres.2020.109369DOI Listing
November 2020

The Microbial Diversity of Non-Korean Kimchi as Revealed by Viable Counting and Metataxonomic Sequencing.

Foods 2020 Oct 29;9(11). Epub 2020 Oct 29.

Dipartimento di Scienze Agrarie, Alimentari ed Ambientali, Università Politecnica delle Marche, via Brecce Bianche, 60131 Ancona, Italy.

Kimchi is recognized worldwide as the flagship food of Korea. To date, most of the currently available microbiological studies on kimchi deal with Korean manufactures. Moreover, there is a lack of knowledge on the occurrence of eumycetes in kimchi. Given these premises, the present study was aimed at investigating the bacterial and fungal dynamics occurring during the natural fermentation of an artisan non-Korean kimchi manufacture. Lactic acid bacteria were dominant, while Enterobacteriaceae, Pseudomonadaceae, and yeasts progressively decreased during fermentation. spp., , , and spp. were detected during the first 15 days of fermentation, whereas the last fermentation phase was dominated by , together with . For the mycobiota at the beginning of the fermentation process, and were the dominant Operational Taxonomic Units (OTUs) in batch 1, whereas in batch 2 prevailed. In the last stage of fermentation, , , and were the most abundant taxa in both analyzed batches. The knowledge gained in the present study represents a step forward in the description of the microbial dynamics of kimchi produced outside the region of origin using local ingredients. It will also serve as a starting point for further isolation of kimchi-adapted microorganisms to be assayed as potential starters for the manufacturing of novel vegetable preserves with high quality and functional traits.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/foods9111568DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7693646PMC
October 2020

Yellow Mealworm Inclusion in Diets for Heavy-Size Broiler Chickens: Implications for Intestinal Microbiota and Mucin Dynamics.

Animals (Basel) 2020 Oct 18;10(10). Epub 2020 Oct 18.

Department of Veterinary Sciences, University of Turin, Largo Paolo Braccini 2, 10095 Grugliasco (TO), Italy.

In the present trial, 160 heavy-size male broiler chickens were allocated to 4 dietary treatments (control feed [C] and 5, 10 and 15% TM meal inclusion, respectively, with 5 replicate pens/treatment and 8 birds/pen) to evaluate the influence of TM meal on intestinal microbiota and mucin composition. The broiler chickens fed TM-based diets showed higher beta diversity of their cecal microbiota in comparison with the C birds ( < 0.001). A significant decrease of the relative abundance of Firmicutes phylum and lower Firmicutes:Bacteroidetes ratios (False Discovery Rate [FDR] < 0.05) were also identified in TM15 broiler chickens when compared to the C group. Furthermore, the TM birds showed decreased relative abundance of L- genera (FDR < 0.05). In relation to the gut mucin composition, higher mucin staining intensity was detected in the intestinal crypts of TM5 birds in comparison with the other TM groups ( < 0.05). In conclusion, dietary TM meal inclusion negatively influenced the cecal microbiota of heavy-size broiler chickens in terms of partial alteration of the physiological microbial population and reduction of the potential beneficial bacteria (with slightly more pronounced effects when testing the 10-15% inclusion levels).
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/ani10101909DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7603283PMC
October 2020

Spatiotemporal Distribution of the Environmental Microbiota in Food Processing Plants as Impacted by Cleaning and Sanitizing Procedures: the Case of Slaughterhouses and Gaseous Ozone.

Appl Environ Microbiol 2020 11 10;86(23). Epub 2020 Nov 10.

Department of Agriculture, Forestry, and Food Sciences, University of Turin, Turin, Italy

Microbial complexity and contamination levels in food processing plants heavily impact the final product fate and are mainly controlled by proper environmental cleaning and sanitizing. Among the emerging disinfection technologies, ozonation is considered an effective strategy to improve the ordinary cleaning and sanitizing of slaughterhouses. However, its effects on contamination levels and environmental microbiota still need to be understood. For this purpose, we monitored the changes in microbiota composition in different slaughterhouse environments during the phases of cleaning/sanitizing and ozonation at 40, 20, or 4 ppm. Overall, the meat processing plant microbiota differed significantly between secondary processing rooms and deboning rooms, with a greater presence of psychrotrophic taxa in secondary processing rooms because of their lower temperatures. Cleaning/sanitizing procedures significantly reduced the contamination levels and in parallel increased the number of detectable operational taxonomic units (OTUs), by removing the masking effect of the most abundant human/animal-derived OTUs, which belonged to the phylum Subsequently, ozonation at 40 or 20 ppm effectively decreased the remaining viable bacterial populations. However, we could observe selective ozone-mediated inactivation of psychrotrophic bacteria only in the secondary processing rooms. There, the and abundances and their viable counts were significantly affected by 40 or 20 ppm of ozone, while more ubiquitous genera like showed a remarkable resistance to the same treatments. This study showed the effectiveness of highly concentrated gaseous ozone as an adjunct sanitizing method that can minimize cross-contamination and so extend the meat shelf life. Our survey demonstrates that RNA-based sequencing of 16S rRNA amplicons is a reliable approach to qualitatively probe, at high taxonomic resolution, the changes triggered by new and existing cleaning/sanitizing strategies in the environmental microbiota in human-built environments. This approach could soon represent a fast tool to clearly define which routine sanitizing interventions are more suitable for a specific food processing environment, thus limiting the costs of special cleaning interventions and potential product loss.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1128/AEM.01861-20DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7657643PMC
November 2020

Distribution of Antibiotic Resistance Genes in the Saliva of Healthy Omnivores, Ovo-Lacto-Vegetarians, and Vegans.

Genes (Basel) 2020 09 18;11(9). Epub 2020 Sep 18.

Department of Agricultural, Food and Environmental Sciences (D3A), Università Politecnica delle Marche, 60131 Ancona, Italy.

Food consumption allows the entrance of bacteria and their antibiotic resistance (AR) genes into the human oral cavity. To date, very few studies have examined the influence of diet on the composition of the salivary microbiota, and even fewer investigations have specifically aimed to assess the impact of different long-term diets on the salivary resistome. In this study, the saliva of 144 healthy omnivores, ovo-lacto-vegetarians, and vegans were screened by nested PCR for the occurrence of 12 genes conferring resistance to tetracyclines, macrolide-lincosamide-streptogramin B, vancomycin, and β-lactams. The (W), (M), and (B) genes occurred with the highest frequencies. Overall, no effect of diet on AR gene distribution was seen. Some differences emerged at the recruiting site level, such as the higher frequency of (C) in the saliva of the ovo-lacto-vegetarians and omnivores from Bologna and Turin, respectively, and the higher occurrence of (K) in the saliva of the omnivores from Bologna. A correlation of the intake of milk and cheese with the abundance of (K) and (C) genes was seen. Finally, when the occurrence of the 12 AR genes was evaluated along with geographical location, age, and sex as sources of variability, high similarity among the 144 volunteers was seen.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/genes11091088DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7564780PMC
September 2020

Short communication: High-throughput sequencing approach to investigate Italian artisanal cheese production.

J Dairy Sci 2020 Nov 18;103(11):10015-10021. Epub 2020 Sep 18.

Dipartimento di Scienze Veterinarie, Università di Torino, 10095 Grugliasco, Italy.

In this study, high-throughput sequencing (HTS) was used to investigate the microbiota of Robiola di Roccaverano production, an artisanal Protected Designation of Origin soft cheese made with raw goat milk by addition of a natural milk starter (NMS), from the Piedmont region of Italy. Different steps of production of Robiola di Roccaverano cheese at one artisanal dairy were monitored. Matched samples of milk, NMS, curd, and 5-d and 15-d matured cheeses were collected at different periods of the year. The DNA sequences obtained by HTS belonged to 5 phyla: Proteobacteria, Firmicutes, Bacteroidetes, Actinobacteria, and Tenericutes. In milk, Proteobacteria and Firmicutes were mainly found, and several operational taxonomic units (OTU) belonging to contaminant bacteria such as Pseudomonas, Serratia, and Staphylococcus were observed. However, in NMS, curd, and 5- and 15-d cheeses, Firmicutes were principally observed where OTU of Lactococcus lactis were predominant, followed by Leuconostoc mesenteroides OTU. The results of the analysis showed high bacterial diversity in milk samples compared with NMS, curd, and 5- and 15-d cheeses, suggesting strong action of NMS in driving the characteristics of the final products.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3168/jds.2020-18208DOI Listing
November 2020

Portuguese cacholeira blood sausage: A first taste of its microbiota and volatile organic compounds.

Food Res Int 2020 10 21;136:109567. Epub 2020 Jul 21.

Dipartimento di Scienze Agrarie, Alimentari ed Ambientali, Università Politecnica delle Marche, via Brecce Bianche, Ancona, Italy. Electronic address:

Among typical Portuguese sausages, the cacholeira blood sausage undoubtedly represents one of the most popular preparations. To the authors' knowledge, a lack of information on both the microbiota and the volatile organic compounds (VOCs) of this blood-containing sausage emerges from the available scientific literature. This study represents the first characterization of physico-chemical, microbiological and volatile traits of Portuguese cacholeira blood sausage. To this end, ready-to-eat cacholeira blood sausages were collected from two production batches manufactured in summer (batch 1) and autumn (batch 2). Viable counts showed active microbial communities mainly composed by lactic acid bacteria, coagulase negative cocci, enterococci and eumycetes. The metataxonomic approach showed a simple bacterial composition, which was dominated by Lactobacillus sakei in both the analyzed batches (1 and 2) considered. Carnobacterium, Enterococcus, Kluyvera, Lactococcus and Serratia were found as minor genera. The mycobiota varied according to the production season. Batch 1 was dominated by Starmerella apicola, Debaryomyces hansenii and Candida tropicalis, whereas batch 2 was dominated by D. hansenii. Moreover, Aspergillus spp., Kurtzmaniella zeylanoides, Saccharomyces cerevisiae, Kurtzmaniella santamariae, Brettanomyces bruxellensis and Pichia kluyveri were detected in both the batches as minority species. Seventy-two volatile compounds were identified, including esters, phenols, terpenoids, acids, alcohols, ketones, aldehydes, lactones, furans, sulphur and nitrogen compounds. Significant differences were seen in the amount of some compounds, as a feasible consequence of differences in the raw materials, artisan production and seasonality.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.foodres.2020.109567DOI Listing
October 2020

Antimicrobial Effects of Black Soldier Fly and Yellow Mealworm Fats and Their Impact on Gut Microbiota of Growing Rabbits.

Animals (Basel) 2020 Jul 28;10(8). Epub 2020 Jul 28.

Department of Agricultural, Forest and Food Sciences, University of Torino, Largo Paolo Braccini 2, 10095 Grugliasco, Italy.

This study aimed to evaluate the in vitro antimicrobial activities of two types of insect fats extracted from black soldier fly larvae (HI, L.) and yellow mealworm larvae (TM, L.) and their effects as dietary replacement of soybean oil (S) on cecal fermentation pattern, and fecal and cecal microbiota in rabbits. A total of 120 weaned rabbits were randomly allotted to three dietary treatments (40 rabbits/group) -a control diet (C diet) containing 1.5% of S and two experimental diets (HI diet (HID) and TM diet (TMD)), where S was totally substituted by HI or TM fats during the whole trial that lasted 41 days. Regarding the in vitro antimicrobial activities, HI and TM fats did not show any effects on growth. showed significantly lower growth when challenged with HI fats than the controls. The insect fat supplementation in rabbit diets increased the contents of the cecal volatile fatty acids when compared to the control group. A metataxonomic approach was adopted to investigate the shift in the microbial composition as a function of the dietary insect fat supplementation. The microbiota did not show a clear separation as a function of the inclusion, even if a specific microbial signature was observed. Indeed, HI and TM fat supplementation enriched the presence of that was found to be correlated with NH3-N concentration. An increase in , which can improve the immune response of the host, was also observed. This study confirms the potential of HI and TM fats as antibacterial feed ingredients with a positive influence on the rabbit cecal microbiota, thus supporting the possibility of including HI and TM fats in rabbit diets.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/ani10081292DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7460256PMC
July 2020

A Compost Treatment Acts as a Suppressive Agent in Pathosystem by Modifying the Rhizosphere Microbiota.

Front Plant Sci 2020 24;11:885. Epub 2020 Jun 24.

AGROINNOVA - Centre of Competence for the Innovation in the Agro-Environmental Sector, University of Turin, Turin, Italy.

Leonian (PHC) is a filamentous pathogen oomycete that causes root, fruit, foliar and crown rot over a wide host range, including the economically and nutritionally important summer squash ( var. L.) crop. PHC chemical control strategies are difficult to adopt, due to the limited number of registered chemicals that are permitted and the scalar harvest system. For these reasons, other strategies, such as the use of waste-based composts that can act as suppressive agents against several soilborne pathogens, have been studied intensively. It is well known that compost's microbiota plays an important role to confer its suppressive ability. In this study, four different composts were analyzed with both 16S rRNA gene and 18S rRNA gene real-time PCR amplification and with 26S gene amplicon-based sequencing; the total abundance of the bacterial and fungal communities was found to be higher compared to literature, thus confirming that the four composts were a good inoculum source for agricultural applications. The core mycobiota was mainly composed of 31 genera; nevertheless, it was possible to observe a clear predominance of the same few taxa in all the composts. The four composts were then tested, at different concentrations (1-10-20% v/v), to establish their ability to confer suppressiveness to the (PHC) - pathosystem in controlled greenhouse pot trials. A total of 12 compost mixtures were considered, and of these, one (-enriched compost at 10% v/v) was able to statistically reduce the disease incidence caused by PHC (by 50% compared to the untreated control). Hence, the microbiota composition of the most effective compost treatment was investigated and compared with untreated and chemical (metalaxyl) controls. Mycobiota sequencing showed genera differences between the three treatments, with relative abundances of several fungal genera that were significantly different among the samples. Moreover, PCA analyses clustered the compost treatment differently from the chemical and the untreated controls. These findings suggest that suppressive activity of a compost is strictly influenced by its microbiota and the applied dosage, but the ability to induce a shaping in the rhizosphere microbial composition is also required.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3389/fpls.2020.00885DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7327441PMC
June 2020

Effects of dietary meal inclusion on cecal microbiota and small intestinal mucin dynamics and infiltration with immune cells of weaned piglets.

J Anim Sci Biotechnol 2020 24;11:64. Epub 2020 Jun 24.

Department of Agricultural, Forest and Food Sciences, University of Turin, Largo Paolo Braccini 2, 10095 Grugliasco, TO Italy.

Background: The constant interaction between diet and intestinal barrier has a crucial role in determining gut health in pigs. (HI) meal (that represents a promising, alternative feed ingredient for production animals) has recently been demonstrated to influence colonic microbiota, bacterial metabolite profile and mucosal immune status of pigs, but no data about modulation of gut mucin dynamics are currently available. The present study evaluated the effects of dietary HI meal inclusion on the small intestinal mucin composition of piglets, as well as providing insights into the cecal microbiota and the mucosal infiltration with immune cells.

Results: A total of 48 weaned piglets were randomly allotted to 3 dietary treatments (control diet [C] and 5% or 10% HI meal inclusion [HI5 and HI10], with 4 replicate boxes/treatment and 4 animals/box) and slaughtered after 61 days of trial (3 animals/box, 12 piglets/diet). The cecal microbiota assessment by 16S rRNA amplicon based sequencing showed higher beta diversity in the piglets fed the HI-based diets than the C ( <  0.001). Furthermore, the HI-fed animals showed increased abundance of , , , , , , unclassified members of Ruminococcaceae, and when compared to the C group (FDR <  0.05). The gut of the piglets fed the HI-based diets showed greater neutral mucin percentage than the C ( <  0.05), with the intestinal neutral mucins of the HI-fed animals being also higher than the sialomucins and the sulfomucins found in the gut of the C group ( <  0.05). Furthermore, the piglets fed the HI-based diets displayed lower histological scores in the jejunum than the other gut segments (ileum [HI5] or ileum and duodenum [HI10],  <  0.05).

Conclusions: Dietary HI meal utilization positively influenced the cecal microbiota and the small intestinal mucin dynamics of the piglets in terms of selection of potentially beneficial bacteria and preservation of mature mucin secretory architecture, without determining the development of gut inflammation. These findings further confirm the suitability of including insect meal in swine diets.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/s40104-020-00466-xDOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7313100PMC
June 2020

Dried fruit pomace inclusion in poultry diet: growth performance, intestinal morphology and physiology.

J Anim Sci Biotechnol 2020 19;11:63. Epub 2020 Jun 19.

Polish Academy of Sciences, Institute of Animal Reproduction and Food Research, Olsztyn, Poland.

Background: Fruit pomaces are by-products rich in polyphenol compounds and dietary fiber. They seem to play an important role in regulating the gut microbiota, morphology and physiology. The aim of this study was to assess whether apple (A), blackurrant (B) or strawberry (S) pomaces could be suitable ingredients in broiler diets and their effect on gut health. A total of 480 male broilers were randomly allotted to 8 dietary treatments with lower (3%-L) or higher (6%-H) dietary fiber content: two control groups (CL/CH), two A diets (AL/AH), two B diets (BL/BH), two S diets (SL/SH). Diet and fruit pomaces were chemically analyzed to assess polyphenol concentration and fibre fraction content. After the evaluation of growth performance, 6 birds/group were slaughtered at 35 days of age. Morphometric and histopathological investigations were performed on duodenum, jejunum and ileum. Excreta were collected to perform microbiota evaluation by 16S DNA sequencing. Weight, viscosity, enzymatic activity, short chain fatty acid (SCFAs) and ammonia concentration were determined in ileum and/or ceca content.

Results: A pomace and A diets showed the lowest polyphenol content and the highest content of soluble fibre fraction. No significant differences were observed for growth performance, gut morphometry and histopathology ( > 0.05). Dietary fruit pomace inclusion increased the weight of ileum and ceca and the ileum digesta viscosity ( < 0.05). In the ileum, A and S groups showed lower bacterial α-glucosidase activity than C groups. Moreover, small intestine SCFAs concentration was higher in fruit pomaces diets ( < 0.05). In ceca, B and S groups showed lower ammonia concentration and higher SCFAs than C. Dietary treatments also influenced the activity of α-glucosidase, α-galactosidase, β-galactosidase β-glucuronidase and xylase. Regarding microbiota, at phylum level, Firmicutes were differentially abundant across treatment (maximum for C and minimum in S, FDR > 0.05). At genus level, an increase of in AH and in S/B diets, as well as a decrease of in all fruit pomace groups were recorded ( < 0.05).

Conclusions: Fruit pomaces could be suitable ingredients in poultry nutrition even if further studies are needed to better understand which doses is more recommended to avoid negative effects on gut microbiota.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/s40104-020-00464-zDOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7304194PMC
June 2020

Impact of Chemical and Alternative Fungicides Applied to Grapevine cv Nebbiolo on Microbial Ecology and Chemical-Physical Grape Characteristics at Harvest.

Front Plant Sci 2020 29;11:700. Epub 2020 May 29.

Department of Agricultural, Forest and Food Sciences, University of Turin, Grugliasco, Italy.

Viticulture is a cropping system in which treatment against fungal diseases (in particular powdery and downy mildews) can be extremely frequent. Accordingly, a reduction in antimicrobial treatments and the application of environmentally-friendly compounds are becoming increasingly important for a more sustainable viticulture. In addition to their effect against pathogens, the impact of these products on the quality of the grapes is very important for the oenological industries, but unfortunately at present few data are available. We evaluated the effect of the application of biocontrol products and resistance inducers in the vineyard on the mechanical properties, microbial ecology, technological and phenolic maturity of "Nebbiolo" grapes at harvest. The yield and vigor of vines were not influenced by the treatments, nor were the production of primary and secondary metabolites. However, the active ingredients influenced the mechanical properties of the skin (hardness and thickness). A significant hardening of the skin was detected when laminarin and chito-oligosaccharides were used, and sulfur induced a thickening of the skin with potential consequences for wine quality. Furthermore, the yeast community present on grape berries was influenced by the treatments. The abundance of , the dominant species on the grape berry, changed in response to the compounds used. In addition, sp. was reduced in some treatments with a potentially positive effect on the quality and the safety of the grapes. This study provides an overview of the effect of biocontrol products and resistance inducers on microbial ecology and "Nebbiolo" grape quality, contributing to the establishment of more sustainable and effective defense strategies in viticulture.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3389/fpls.2020.00700DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7272676PMC
May 2020

Discovering microbiota and volatile compounds of surströmming, the traditional Swedish sour herring.

Food Microbiol 2020 Oct 9;91:103503. Epub 2020 Apr 9.

Dipartimento di Scienze Agrarie, Alimentari ed Ambientali, Università Politecnica delle Marche, via Brecce Bianche, 60131, Ancona, Italy. Electronic address:

In this study, the microbiota of ready-to-eat surströmming from three Swedish producers were studied using a combined approach. The pH values of the samples ranged between 6.67 ± 0.01 and 6.98 ± 0.01, whereas their a values were between 0.911 ± 0.001 and 0.940 ± 0.001. The acetic acid concentration was between 0.289 ± 0.009 g/100 g and 0.556 ± 0.036 g/100 g. Very low concentrations of lactic acid were measured. Viable counting revealed the presence of mesophilic aerobes, mesophilic lactobacilli and lactococci as well as halophilic lactobacilli and lactococci, coagulase-negative staphylococci, halophilic aerobes and anaerobes. Negligible counts for Enterobacteriaceae, Pseudomonadaceae and total eumycetes were observed, whereas no sulfite-reducing anaerobes were detected. Listeria monocytogenes and Salmonella spp. were absent in all samples. Multiplex real-time PCR revealed the absence of the bont/A, bont/B, bont/E, bont/F, and 4gyrB (CP) genes, which encode botulinic toxins, in all the samples analyzed. Metagenomic sequencing revealed the presence of a core microbiota dominated by Halanaerobium praevalens, Alkalibacterium gilvum, Carnobacterium spp., Tetragenococcus halophilus, Clostridiisalibacter spp. and Porphyromonadaceae. Psychrobacter celer, Ruminococcaceae, Marinilactibacillus psychrotolerans, Streptococcus infantis and Salinivibrio costicola were detected as minor OTUs. GC-MS analysis of volatile components revealed the massive presence of trimethylamine and sulphur compounds. Moreover, 1,2,4-trithiolane, phenols, ketones, aldehydes, alcohols, esters and long chain aliphatic hydrocarbons were also detected. The data obtained allowed pro-technological bacteria, which are well-adapted to saline environments, to be discovered for the first time. Further analyses are needed to better clarify the extent of the contribution of either the microbiota or autolytic enzymes of the fish flesh in the aroma definition.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.fm.2020.103503DOI Listing
October 2020

Microbiota and volatilome profile of fresh and chill-stored deepwater rose shrimp (Parapenaeus longirostris).

Food Res Int 2020 06 1;132:109057. Epub 2020 Feb 1.

Lab. Marketing and Technology of Aquatic Products and Foods, Dept. of Ichthyology and Aquatic Environment, School of Agricultural Sciences, University of Thessaly, Fitokou street, 38446, N. Ionia, Volos, Greece.

Bacterial communities and Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs) profile of deepwater rose shrimp (Parapenaeus longirostris) stored at 0 °C (ice) and 4 °C were investigated using 16S amplicon based sequencing and Solid phase micro-extraction (SPME) - Gas chromatography/mass spectrometry (GC/MS), respectively. The shelf-life of shrimps determined by sensory assessment was 5 and 2 days at 0 °C and 4 °C, respectively. Based on 16S analysis (culture-independed), the initial microbiota of shrimps mainly consists of Photobacterium, Candidatus Hepatoplasma, Psychrobacter, Acinetobacter and Delftia. Psychrobacter and Carnobacterium dominated during storage at both temperatures. Psychrobacter was the most dominant taxon at the end of shelf-life of chill-stored shrimps. A minor microbial population composed by Brevundimonas, Stenotrophomonas, Staphylococcus, Legionella, Acinetobacter, Bacillus, Escherichia-Shigella, Enterococcus, Enterobacter, Klebsiella was also detected. Those taxa may be originated from the environment due to an inadequate hygienic practice during fishing, handling and icing. VOCs such as ethanol, 3-methyl-1-butanol, 2-ethyl-1-hexanol, 3-hydroxy-2-butanone, indole etc., were found to be associated with shrimps at 4 °C, while acetone and dimethyl sulfide with shrimps in ice. Some VOCs, from microbial or chemical origin, increased in shrimps either at 0 °C (i.e. 1-octen-3-ol, trans-2-octenal) or at 4 °C (i.e. 3-methyl-1-butanol, indole), while 2-methylbutanal and 3-methylbutanal increased in both temperatures. A positive correlation between Psychrobacter with 2-ethyl-1-hexanol and Carnobacterium with 3-methyl-1-butanol was also observed. Concluding, we suggest the reinforcement of Good Hygiene Practices on fishing boats during fishing/handling, the rapid onboard icing and keeping shrimps iced avoiding even small increase of storage temperature that affects quality parameters (e.g. microbial population level, synthesis of microbiota, VOCs profile) in order to provide a product of the highest quality and safety in the market.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.foodres.2020.109057DOI Listing
June 2020

Microbiological characterization of Gioddu, an Italian fermented milk.

Int J Food Microbiol 2020 Jun 20;323:108610. Epub 2020 Mar 20.

Dipartimento di Scienze Agrarie, Alimentari ed Ambientali, Università Politecnica delle Marche, via Brecce Bianche, 60131 Ancona, Italy.

Gioddu, also known as "Miciuratu", "Mezzoraddu" or "Latte ischidu" (literally meaning acidulous milk), is the sole variety of traditional Italian fermented milk. The aim of the present study was to elucidate the microbiota and the mycobiota occurring in artisan Gioddu sampled from three Sardinian producers by combining the results of viable counting on selective culture media and high-throughput sequencing. Physico-chemical parameters were also measured. The overall low pH values (3.80-4.22) recorded in the analyzed Gioddu samples attested the strong acidifying activity carried out by lactic acid bacteria during fermentation. Viable counts revealed the presence of presumptive lactococci, presumptive lactobacilli and non-Saccharomyces yeasts. A complex (kefir-like) microbiota of bacteria and yeasts was unveiled through sequencing. In more detail, Lactobacillus delbrueckii was found to dominate in Gioddu together with Streptococcus thermophilus, thus suggesting the establishment of a yogurt-like protocooperation. Unexpectedly, in all the three analyzed batches from two out of the three producers Lactobacillus kefiri was also detected, thus representing an absolute novelty, which suggests the presence of bioactive compounds (e.g. exopolysaccharides) similar to those characterizing milk kefir beverage. Mycobiota population, studied for the very first time in Gioddu, revealed a more complex composition, with Kluyveromyces marxianus, Galactomyces candidum and Geotrichum galactomyces constituting the core species. Further research is needed to disclose the eventual occurence in Gioddu of probiotic cultures and bioactive compounds (e.g. exopolysaccharides, angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitory peptides and antimicrobial compounds) with potential health-benefits for the consumers.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.ijfoodmicro.2020.108610DOI Listing
June 2020

Gut microbiota composition after diet and probiotics in overweight breast cancer survivors: a randomized open-label pilot intervention trial.

Nutrition 2020 06 29;74:110749. Epub 2020 Jan 29.

Department of Clinical Nutrition, Città della Salute e della Scienza, Turin, Italy. Electronic address:

Objectives: Breast cancer (BC) is the most diagnosed cancer in women. Increasing survival rates shift attention to preventive strategies. Obesity and intestinal microbiota composition may be associated with BC. A Mediterranean diet (MD) proved to be protective. The aim of this study was to assess the efficacy of probiotics in addition to an MD versus diet alone in influencing gut microbiota and metabolic profile in overweight BC survivors.

Methods: A total of 34 BC survivors were randomly assigned to an MD for 4 mo plus 1 sachet/d of probiotics (Bifidobacterium longum BB536, Lactobacillus rhamnosus HN001) for the first 2 mo (intervention group, n = 16) or an MD alone for 4 mo (control group, n = 18). Anthropometric and nutritional assessments, adherence to the MD, compliance with physical activity, and metabolic parameters dosage were performed at baseline (T0), at 2 mo (T2), and at 4 mo (T4). Intestinal microbiota analysis was performed at T0 and T2.

Results: After 2 mo of probiotic administration the number of bacterial species (P = 0.01) and the bacterial diversity assessed with the Chao1 index (P = 0.004) significantly increased; no significant variations were detected after diet alone. The Bacteroidetes-to-Firmicutes ratio significantly decreased in the intervention group and increased in controls (P = 0.004). Significant reductions of body weight, body mass index, fasting glucose, and homeostasis model assessment of insulin resistance were identified at T4 in both groups; in the intervention group waist circumference (P = 0.012), waist-to-hip ratio (P = 0.045), and fasting insulin (P = 0.017) also significantly decreased.

Conclusions: Probiotics in addition to an MD positively influence gut microbiota and improve metabolic and anthropometric parameters compared with an MD alone.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.nut.2020.110749DOI Listing
June 2020

Is there any still undisclosed biodiversity in Ciauscolo salami? A new glance into the microbiota of an artisan production as revealed by high-throughput sequencing.

Meat Sci 2020 Jul 20;165:108128. Epub 2020 Mar 20.

Dipartimento di Scienze Agrarie, Alimentari ed Ambientali, Università Politecnica delle Marche, via Brecce Bianche, Ancona, Italy. Electronic address:

Ciauscolo is a fermented sausage with the Protected Geographical Indication (PGI) status. To disclose the microbial ecology of a model Ciauscolo salami manufacture during its natural fermentation, viable counting, amplicon-based sequencing and real-time PCR were applied. The volatilome during fermentation was also characterized. The results allowed previously undetected species to be discovered. The core microbiota was composed by Lactobacillus algidus, Leuconostoc carnosum, Lactobacillus sakei, Debaryomyces hansenii, Glomus hyderabadensis, Tilletiopsis washingtonensis, and Kurtzmaniella zeylanoides. Salmonella spp. and Listeria monocytogenes were absent in all the samples; moreover, multiplex real-time PCR revealed the absence of the target genes bont/A, bont/B, bont/E, bont/F, and 4gyrB (CP), encoding botulinic toxins. Volatilome, deeply depending on microbiological metabolism, was characterized by spices-derived components. Limonene, sabinene, α- and β-pinene, 3-carene, and α-thujene were the most represented monoterpene hydrocarbons, whereas β- and α-copaene were the most represented sesquiterpene hydrocarbons. Allyl methyl sulphide and diallyl disulphide were the major aliphatic sulphur compounds, together with diallyl sulphide and allyl methyl disulphide.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.meatsci.2020.108128DOI Listing
July 2020

Diet influences the functions of the human intestinal microbiome.

Sci Rep 2020 03 6;10(1):4247. Epub 2020 Mar 6.

Department of Agricultural, Forest and Food Science, University of Turin, Grugliasco, Italy.

Gut microbes programme their metabolism to suit intestinal conditions and convert dietary components into a panel of small molecules that ultimately affect host physiology. To unveil what is behind the effects of key dietary components on microbial functions and the way they modulate host-microbe interaction, we used for the first time a multi-omic approach that goes behind the mere gut phylogenetic composition and provides an overall picture of the functional repertoire in 27 fecal samples from omnivorous, vegan and vegetarian volunteers. Based on our data, vegan and vegetarian diets were associated to the highest abundance of microbial genes/proteins responsible for cell motility, carbohydrate- and protein-hydrolyzing enzymes, transport systems and the synthesis of essential amino acids and vitamins. A positive correlation was observed when intake of fiber and the relative fecal abundance of flagellin were compared. Microbial cells and flagellin extracted from fecal samples of 61 healthy donors modulated the viability of the human (HT29) colon carcinoma cells and the host response through the stimulation of the expression of Toll-like receptor 5, lectin RegIIIα and three interleukins (IL-8, IL-22 and IL-23). Our findings concretize a further and relevant milestone on how the diet may prevent/mitigate disease risk.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/s41598-020-61192-yDOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7060259PMC
March 2020

Black soldier fly and gut health in broiler chickens: insights into the relationship between cecal microbiota and intestinal mucin composition.

J Anim Sci Biotechnol 2020 3;11:11. Epub 2020 Feb 3.

2Department of Veterinary Sciences, University of Turin, Largo Paolo Braccini 2, 10095 Grugliasco, TO Italy.

Background: The relationship between diet and intestinal microbiota and mucin composition appears to be fundamental for poultry gut health. The effects of insect meal (whose role as alternative feed ingredient is now well recognized) on gut microbiota and mucin composition have recently been reported in -fed free-range and broiler chickens, but no data are currently available for (HI)-fed broilers. The present study evaluated the effects of dietary HI meal inclusion on cecal microbiota and intestinal mucin composition of broiler chickens.

Results: A total of 256 male broiler chickens were allotted to 4 dietary treatments (control diet [C] and 5%, 10% and 15% HI meal inclusion, with 8 replicate pens/treatment and 8 birds/pen) and slaughtered at 35 d of age (2 animals/pen, 16 birds/diet). The cecal microbiota assessment by 16S rRNA amplicon based sequencing showed lower alpha diversity in HI15 chickens (Shannon,  < 0.05) and higher beta diversity (Adonis and ANOSIM,  < 0.001) in birds fed HI diets than C. Furthermore, HI15 birds displayed significant increase of the relative abundance of Proteobacteria phylum (False Discovery Rate [FDR] <  0.05) when compared to HI10. L- ( from Lachnospiraceae family), , and genera were found to be characteristic of HI5 cecal microbiota (FDR < 0.05), while broiler chickens fed HI10 and HI15 diets were characterized (FDR < 0.05) by and (HI10) and , and genera (HI15). Periodic-acid Schiff, Alcian Blue pH 2.5 and high iron diamine staining on small and large intestine also demonstrated lower mucin staining intensity in the intestinal villi of HI10 and HI15 birds than C ( < 0.05).

Conclusions: Dietary HI meal utilization at low inclusion levels (i.e., 5%) positively influenced either the cecal microbiota or the gut mucin dynamics in terms of selection of potentially beneficial bacteria and increase in villi mucins. However, high inclusion levels (in particular the 15%) may have a negative influence in terms of partial reduction of microbial complexity, reduction of potentially beneficial bacteria, selection of bacteria with mucolytic activity and decrease in villi mucins.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/s40104-019-0413-yDOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6996183PMC
February 2020

The microbiota composition of the offspring of patients with gestational diabetes mellitus (GDM).

PLoS One 2019 16;14(12):e0226545. Epub 2019 Dec 16.

Department of Medical Sciences, University of Turin, Turin, Italy.

The microbiota composition of the offspring of women with gestational diabetes mellitus (GDM), a common pregnancy complication, is still little known. We investigated whether the GDM offspring gut microbiota composition is associated with the maternal nutritional habits, metabolic variables or pregnancy outcomes. Furthermore, we compared the GDM offspring microbiota to the microbiota of normoglycemic-mother offspring. Fecal samples of 29 GDM infants were collected during the first week of life and assessed by 16S amplicon-based sequencing. The offspring's microbiota showed significantly lower α-diversity than the corresponding mothers. Earlier maternal nutritional habits were more strongly associated with the offspring microbiota (maternal oligosaccharide positively with infant Ruminococcus, maternal saturated fat intake inversely with infant Rikenellaceae and Ruminococcus) than last-trimester maternal habits. Principal coordinate analysis showed a separation of the infant microbiota according to the type of feeding (breastfeeding vs formula-feeding), displaying in breast-fed infants a higher abundance of Bifidobacterium. A few Bacteroides and Blautia oligotypes were shared by the GDM mothers and their offspring, suggesting a maternal microbial imprinting. Finally, GDM infants showed higher relative abundance of pro-inflammatory taxa than infants from healthy women. In conclusion, many maternal conditions impact on the microbiota composition of GDM offspring whose microbiota showed increased abundance of pro-inflammatory taxa.
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http://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0226545PLOS
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6913919PMC
April 2020

Analytical dataset on volatile compounds of cocoa bean shells from different cultivars and geographical origins.

Data Brief 2019 Aug 26;25:104268. Epub 2019 Jul 26.

Department of Agriculture, Forestry and Food Sciences (DISAFA), University of Turin, Grugliasco, Italy.

This data article describes the analysis of volatile organic compounds (VOCs) in 44 samples of cocoa bean shells (CBS) obtained from cocoa beans of diverse cultivars and collected in different geographical origins. The volatile compounds were extracted by headspace solid-phase microextraction (HS-SPME) method and then analyzed by gas chromatography coupled to a quadrupole mass spectrometry GC-qMS. The retention times, identification and semi-quantification of 101 VOCs are reported. Data collected on the volatile profile of CBS samples using E-nose analysis are also available. Additional data related to physicochemical characteristics and color analysis for CBS samples are reported. Further interpretation and discussion on these datasets can be found in the related article entitled "Assessment of volatile fingerprint by HS-SPME/GC-qMS and E-nose for the classification of cocoa bean shells using chemometrics" (Barbosa-Pereira et al., 2019).
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.dib.2019.104268DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6700496PMC
August 2019

Erythromycin-resistant lactic acid bacteria in the healthy gut of vegans, ovo-lacto vegetarians and omnivores.

PLoS One 2019 2;14(8):e0220549. Epub 2019 Aug 2.

Dipartimento di Scienze Agrarie, Alimentari ed Ambientali, Università Politecnica delle Marche, Ancona, Italy.

Diet can affect the diversity and composition of gut microbiota. Usage of antibiotics in food production and in human or veterinary medicine has resulted in the emergence of commensal antibiotic resistant bacteria in the human gut. The incidence of erythromycin-resistant lactic acid bacteria (LAB) in the feces of healthy vegans, ovo-lacto vegetarians and omnivores was analyzed. Overall, 155 LAB were isolated and characterized for their phenotypic and genotypic resistance to erythromycin. The isolates belonged to 11 different species within the Enterococcus and Streptococcus genera. Enterococcus faecium was the dominant species in isolates from all the dietary categories. Only 97 out of 155 isolates were resistant to erythromycin after Minimum Inhibitory Concentration (MIC) determination; among them, 19 isolates (7 from vegans, 4 from ovo-lacto vegetarians and 8 from omnivores) carried the erm(B) gene. The copresence of erm(B) and erm(A) genes was only observed in Enterococcus avium from omnivores. Moreover, the transferability of erythromycin resistance genes using multidrug-resistant (MDR) cultures selected from the three groups was assessed, and four out of six isolates were able to transfer the erm(B) gene. Overall, isolates obtained from the omnivore samples showed resistance to a greater number of antibiotics and carried more tested antibiotic resistance genes compared to the isolates from ovo-lacto vegetarians and vegans. In conclusion, our results show that diet does not significantly affect the occurrence of erythromycin-resistant bacteria and that commensal strains may act as a reservoir of antibiotic resistance (AR) genes and as a source of antibiotic resistance spreading.
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http://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0220549PLOS
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6677300PMC
March 2020

Assessment of volatile fingerprint by HS-SPME/GC-qMS and E-nose for the classification of cocoa bean shells using chemometrics.

Food Res Int 2019 09 31;123:684-696. Epub 2019 May 31.

Department of Agriculture, Forestry and Food Sciences (DISAFA), University of Turin, Grugliasco, Italy.

The cocoa bean shell (CBS) is a main by-product of cocoa processing, with great potential to be used as an ingredient for functional foods because of its nutritional and flavour properties. This study aimed to characterise and classify CBSs obtained from cocoa beans of diverse cultivars and collected in different geographical origins through their volatile profile assessed using headspace solid-phase microextraction gas chromatography-mass spectrometry (HS-SPME/GC-qMS) and E-nose combined with principal component analysis (PCA). The study provides, for the first time in a representative set of samples, a comprehensive fingerprint and semi-quantitative data for >100 volatile organic compounds (VOCs), such as aldehydes, ketones, pyrazines, alcohols, and acids. Through PCA, a clear separation of the Criollo cultivar from the other cultivars was achieved with both GC-qMS and E-nose analytical techniques because of the high content of key-aroma VOCs. Several biomarkers identified by GC-qMS, such as 2-hepanol, 2-methylpropanoic acid, and 2,3,5-trimethylpyrazine, recognized as key-aroma compounds for cocoa beans, were found suitable for the classification of CBSs according to their quality and origin. GC-qMS and E-nose appeared to be suitable analytical approaches to classify CBSs, with a high correlation between both analytical techniques. The volatile fingerprint and classification of CBSs could allow for the selection of samples with a specific flavour profile according to the food application and, therefore, constitute an interesting approach to valorise this by-product as a food ingredient.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.foodres.2019.05.041DOI Listing
September 2019