Publications by authors named "Priscilla Day-Walsh"

3 Publications

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Microbiomes in physiology: insights into 21st-century global medical challenges.

Exp Physiol 2022 04 14;107(4):257-264. Epub 2022 Feb 14.

Quadram Institute Bioscience, Food Innovation and Health & Gut Microbes in Health and Disease Programmes, Quadram Institute Bioscience, Norwich, UK.

New Findings: What is the topic of this review? The role of the gut microbiome in physiology and how it can be targeted as an effective strategy against two of the most important global medical challenges of our time, namely, metabolic diseases and antibacterial resistance. What advances does it highlight? The critical roles of the microbiome in regulating host physiology and how microbiome analysis is useful for disease stratification to enable informed clinical decisions and develop interventions such as faecal microbiota transplantation, prebiotics and probiotics. Also, the limitations of microbiome modulation, including the potential for probiotics to enhance antimicrobial resistance gene reservoirs, and that currently a 'healthy microbiome' that can be used as a biobank for transplantation is yet to be defined.

Abstract: The human gut microbiome is a key factor in the development of metabolic diseases and antimicrobial resistance, which are among the greatest global medical challenges of the 21st century. A recent symposium aimed to highlight state-of-the-art evidence for the role of the gut microbiome in physiology, from childhood to adulthood, and the impact this has on global disease outcomes, ageing and antimicrobial resistance. Although the gut microbiome is established early in life, over time the microbiome and its components including metabolites can become perturbed due to changes such as dietary habits, use of antibiotics and age. As gut microbial metabolites, including short-chain fatty acids, secondary bile acids and trimethylamine-N-oxide, can interact with host receptors including G protein-coupled receptors and can alter host metabolic fluxes, they can significantly affect physiological homoeostasis leading to metabolic diseases. These metabolites can be used to stratify disease phenotypes such as irritable bowel syndrome and adverse events after heart failure and allow informed decisions on clinical management and treatment. While strategies such as use of probiotics, prebiotics and faecal microbiota transplantation have been proposed as interventions to treat and prevent metabolic diseases and antimicrobial resistance, caution must be exercised, first due to the potential of probiotics to enhance antimicrobial resistance gene reservoirs, and second, a 'healthy gut microbiome' that can be used as a biobank for transplantation is yet to be defined. We highlight that sampling other parts of the gastrointestinal tract may produce more representative data than the faecal microbiome alone.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1113/EP090226DOI Listing
April 2022

Development and Validation of a LC-MS/MS Technique for the Analysis of Short Chain Fatty Acids in Tissues and Biological Fluids without Derivatisation Using Isotope Labelled Internal Standards.

Molecules 2021 Oct 26;26(21). Epub 2021 Oct 26.

Quadram Institute Bioscience, Norwich Research Park, Norwich NR4 7UQ, UK.

The gut microbiota is critical to the maintenance of physiological homeostasis and as such is implicated in a range of diseases such as colon cancer, ulcerative colitis, diabetes, cardiovascular diseases, and neurodegenerative diseases. Short chain fatty acids (SCFAs) are key metabolites produced by the gut microbiota from the fermentation of dietary fibre. Here we present a novel, sensitive, and direct LC-MS/MS technique using isotopically labelled internal standards without derivatisation for the analysis of SCFAs in different biological matrices. The technique has significant advantages over the current widely used techniques based on sample derivatization and GC-MS analysis, including fast and simple sample preparation and short LC runtime (10 min). The technique is specific and sensitive for the quantification of acetate, butyrate, isobutyrate, isovalerate, lactate, propionate and valerate. The limits of detection were all 0.001 mM except for acetate which was 0.003 mM. The calibration curves for all the analytes were linear with correlation coefficients r > 0.998. The intra- and inter-day precisions in three levels of known concentrations were <12% and <20%, respectively. The quantification accuracy ranged from 92% to 120%. The technique reported here offers a valuable analytical tool for use in studies of SCFA production in the gut and their distribution to host tissues.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/molecules26216444DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8587764PMC
October 2021

The use of an in-vitro batch fermentation (human colon) model for investigating mechanisms of TMA production from choline, L-carnitine and related precursors by the human gut microbiota.

Eur J Nutr 2021 Oct 2;60(7):3987-3999. Epub 2021 May 2.

Quadram Institute Bioscience, Norwich Research Park, Norwich, NR4 7UQ, UK.

Purpose: Plasma trimethylamine-N-oxide (TMAO) levels have been shown to correlate with increased risk of metabolic diseases including cardiovascular diseases. TMAO exposure predominantly occurs as a consequence of gut microbiota-dependent trimethylamine (TMA) production from dietary substrates including choline, carnitine and betaine, which is then converted to TMAO in the liver. Reducing microbial TMA production is likely to be the most effective and sustainable approach to overcoming TMAO burden in humans. Current models for studying microbial TMA production have numerous weaknesses including the cost and length of human studies, differences in TMA(O) metabolism in animal models and the risk of failing to replicate multi-enzyme/multi-strain pathways when using isolated bacterial strains. The purpose of this research was to investigate TMA production from dietary precursors in an in-vitro model of the human colon.

Methods: TMA production from choline, L-carnitine, betaine and γ-butyrobetaine was studied over 24-48 h using an in-vitro human colon model with metabolite quantification performed using LC-MS.

Results: Choline was metabolised via the direct choline TMA-lyase route but not the indirect choline-betaine-TMA route, conversion of L-carnitine to TMA was slower than that of choline and involves the formation of the intermediate γ-BB, whereas the Rieske-type monooxygenase/reductase pathway for L-carnitine metabolism to TMA was negligible. The rate of TMA production from precursors was choline > carnitine > betaine > γ-BB. 3,3-Dimethyl-1-butanol (DMB) had no effect on the conversion of choline to TMA.

Conclusion: The metabolic routes for microbial TMA production in the colon model are consistent with observations from human studies. Thus, this model is suitable for studying gut microbiota metabolism of TMA and for screening potential therapeutic targets that aim to attenuate TMA production by the gut microbiota.

Trial Registration Number: NCT02653001 ( http://www.clinicaltrials.gov ), registered 12 Jan 2016.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s00394-021-02572-6DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8437865PMC
October 2021
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