About this project
Butyrate-producing bacteria have recently gained attention as an important bacterial group within the human gut microbiota, as they are important for a healthy colon and if reduced, contribute to emerging diseases such as inflammatory bowel disease (IBD), irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) and type-2 diabetes. A decrease of butyrate-producing microbial species (e.g. certain Roseburia and Faecalibacterium genera) has been inversely associated with colonic disease; supporting the view that butyrate may be a critical determinant of disease resistance. Butyrate is produced from the microbial fermentation of dietary fibres and different types of fibres have been shown to modulate colonic fermentation activity differently. Thus, shifts in butyrate-producing bacteria caused by bioavailability of dietary substrate (fibre) can drastically change the production and amount of butyrate that is delivered to the colon. In this project, specific food fibres will be tested for their selective potential to modulate butyrate concentrations and butyrate-producing bacterial species in an artificial model of the large intestine.