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2021 ◽  
Raphael Eisenhofer ◽  
Erin D’Agnese ◽  
David Taggart ◽  
Scott Carver ◽  
Beth Penrose

Abstract Most herbivorous mammals have symbiotic microbes living in their gastrointestinal tracts that help with harvesting energy from recalcitrant plant fibre. The bulk of research into these microorganisms has focused on samples collected from faeces, representing the distal region of the gastrointestinal (GI) tract. However, the GI tract in herbivorous mammals is typically long and complex, containing different regions with distinct physico-chemical properties that can structure resident microbial communities. In this study, we characterised the microbial biogeography of the GI tracts in individuals of two species of wombats.Using 16S rRNA gene sequencing, our results show that GI microbial communities of wombats are structured by GI region. For both the bare-nosed wombat (Vombatus ursinus) and the southern hairy-nosed wombat (Lasiorhinus latifrons), we observed a trend of increasing microbial diversity from stomach to distal colon. The microbial composition in the first proximal colon region was more similar between wombat species than the corresponding distal colon region in the same species. We found several microbial genera that were differentially abundant between the first proximal colon and distal colon regions. Surprisingly, only 99 (10.6%) and 204 (18.7%) amplicon sequence variants (ASVs) were shared between the first proximal colon region and the distal colon region for the bare-nosed and southern hairy-nosed wombat, respectively.These results suggest that microbial communities in the first proximal colon region—the putative site of primary plant fermentation in wombats—are distinct from the distal colon, and that faecal samples may have limitations in capturing the diversity of these communities. While faeces are still a valuable and effective means of characterising the distal colon microbiota, future work seeking to better understand how GI microbiota impact the energy economy of wombats (and potentially other hindgut-fermenting mammals) may need to take gut biogeography into account.

2021 ◽  
Vol 12 ◽  
Yulin Lu ◽  
Jingjing Huang ◽  
Yao Zhang ◽  
Zitong Huang ◽  
Weiming Yan ◽  

The etiology of diarrhea-predominant irritable bowel syndrome (IBS-D) is complicated and closely related to neurotransmission in the gastrointestinal (GI) tract. Developing new strategies for treating this disease is a major challenge for IBS-D research. Berberine hydrochloride (BBH), the derivative of berberine, is a herbal constituent used to treat IBS. Previous studies have shown that BBH has potential anti-inflammatory, antibacterial, analgesic, and antidiarrheal effects and a wide range of biological activities, especially in regulating the release of some neurotransmitters. A modified IBS-D rat model induced by chronic restraint stress was used in all experiments to study the effects of BBH on the GI tract. This study measured the abdominal withdrawal reflex (AWR) response to graded colorectal distention (CRD; 20, 40, 60, and 80 mmHg) and observed the fecal areas of stress-induced IBS-D model. Experiments were conducted using organ bath techniques, which were performed in vitro using strips of colonic longitudinal smooth muscle. Inhibitory and excitatory neurotransmitter agents were added to each organ bath to observe contractile responses on the strips and the treatment effect exerted by BBH. The IBS-D rat model was successfully induced by chronic restraint stress, which resulted in an increased defecation frequency and visceral hypersensitivity similar to that of humans. BBH could reduce 4-h fecal areas and AWR response to CRD in IBS-D. The stress-induced IBS-D model showed upregulated colonic mRNA expression levels of 5-hydroxytryptamine-3A receptor and downregulated expression levels of neuronal nitric oxide synthase. Meanwhile, BBH could reverse this outcome. The responses of substances that regulate the contraction induced by related neurotransmission in the longitudinal smooth muscle of IBS-D colon (including the agonist of acetylcholine, carbachol; NOS inhibitor, L-NAME; and P2Y1 receptor antagonist, MRS2500) can be inhibited by BBH. In summary, BBH promotes defecation frequency and visceral hypersensitivity in IBS-D and exerts inhibitory effects on contractile responses in colonic longitudinal smooth muscle. Thus, BBH may represent a new therapeutic approach for treating IBS-D.

2021 ◽  
Vol 2021 ◽  
pp. 1-8
Muhammad Nabeel Ghayur ◽  
Saeed Ahmad ◽  
Anwarul Hassan Gilani

Background. Grewia asiatica Linn, or phalsa, is a commonly consumed fruit in Pakistan. The fruit is employed in the traditional medicine practice of Pakistan as a smooth muscle relaxant in different gastrointestinal (GI) and cardiovascular diseases. In this investigation, we show the antispasmodic and vasorelaxant actions of Grewia asiatica fruit extract. Methods. A 70% methanolic crude extract of the plant material was prepared (Ga.Cr). Different isolated GI tissue preparations and endothelium-intact aortas from rats were utilized to observe the pharmacological actions of the extract. Results. Ga.Cr, in increasing concentrations, inhibited the spontaneously contracting rabbit jejunum. In an effort to determine the mechanism of this relaxant action, contractions were induced in jejunum and ileum tissues with K+ (80 mM). Ga.Cr was able to only partially inhibit these induced contractions indicating that the mechanism might not be completely through a blockade of Ca2+ channels (CCB). When tested on low K+-(25 mM) sustained contractions, Ga.Cr cumulatively suppressed these contractions (0.1–10 mg/ml), indicating an opening of K+ channels (KCO) as the mechanism. Cromakalim, a standard KCO, was also more specific in blocking low K+-induced contractions. For the effect in aorta tissues, Ga.Cr suppressed the agonist-induced contractions from 0.3 mg/ml to 10 mg/ml. Upon challenge with L-NAME, a nitric oxide (NO) blocker, the extract response curve shifted right, indicating vasodilation was mediated via endothelial NO. Conclusion. This study shows that GI antispasmodic and vasodilator activities of Ga.Cr may be mediated via a KCO mechanism in the GI tract and through the release of NO from vascular endothelium.

Pharmaceutics ◽  
2021 ◽  
Vol 13 (9) ◽  
pp. 1460
Hyeonmin Lee ◽  
Jun-Bae Bang ◽  
Young-Guk Na ◽  
Jae-Young Lee ◽  
Cheong-Weon Cho ◽  

Curcumin (CUR) has been used in the treatment of various diseases such as cough, fever, skin disease, and infection because of various biological benefits such as anti-inflammatory, antiviral, antibacterial, and antitumor activity. However, CUR is a BCS class 4 group and has a limitation of low bioavailability due to low solubility and permeability. Therefore, the purpose of this study is to prepare a nanosuspension (NSP) loaded with CUR (CUR-NSP) using a statistical design approach to improve the oral bioavailability of CUR, and then to develop CUR-NSP coated with tannic acid to increase the mucoadhesion in the GI tract. Firstly, the optimized CUR-NSP, composed of sodium dodecyl sulfate (SDS) and polyvinylpyrrolidone/vinyl acetate (PVP/VA), was modified with tannic acid (TA). The particle size and polydispersity index of the formulation measured by laser scattering analyzer were 127.7 ± 1.3 nm and 0.227 ± 0.010, respectively. In addition, the precipitation in distilled water (DW) was 1.52 ± 0.58%. Using a differential scanning calorimeter and X-ray diffraction analysis, the stable amorphous form of CUR was confirmed in the formulation, and it was confirmed that CUR-NSP formulation was coated with TA through a Fourier transform-infrared spectroscopy. In the mucoadhesion assay using the turbidity, it was confirmed that TA-CUR-NSP had higher affinity for mucus than CUR-NSP under all pH conditions. This means that the absorption of CUR can be improved by increasing the retention time in the GI tract of the formulation. In addition, the drug release profile showed more than 80% release, and in the cellular uptake study, the absorption of the formulation (TA-CUR-NSP) containing TA acting as an inhibitor of P-gp was increased by 1.6-fold. In the evaluation of antioxidant activity, the SOD activity of TA-CUR-NSP was remarkably high due to TA, which improves cellular uptake and has antioxidant activity. In the pharmacokinetic evaluation, the maximum drug plasma concentration of the TA-coated NSP formulation was 7.2-fold higher than that of the pure drug. In all experiments, it was confirmed that the TA-CUR-NSP is a promising approach to overcome the low oral bioavailability of CUR.

2021 ◽  
pp. 1-46
Mostafa H. Baky ◽  
Mostafa S. Elshahed ◽  
Ludger A. Wessjohann ◽  
Mohamed A. Farag

Abstract Flavonoids are natural polyphenol secondary metabolites that are widely produced in planta. Flavonoids are ubiquities in human dietary intake and exhibit a myriad of health benefits. Flavonoids-induced biological activities are strongly influenced by their in-situ availability in the human GI tract, as well as the levels of which are modulated by interaction with the gut bacteria. As such, assessing flavonoids-microbiome interactions is considered a key to understand their physiological activities. Here, we review the interaction between the various classes of dietary flavonoids (flavonols, flavones, flavanones, isoflavones, flavan-3-ols, and anthocyanins) and gut microbiota. We aim to provide a holistic overview of the nature and identity of flavonoids on diet, and highlight how flavonoids chemical structure, metabolism, and impact on humans and their microbiomes are interconnected. Emphasis is placed on how flavonoids and their biotransformation products affect gut microbiota population, influence gut homeostasis, and induce measurable physiological changes and biological benefits.

Antonella Bianco ◽  
Isabella Franco ◽  
Alberto Osella ◽  
Gianluigi Giannelli ◽  
Giuseppe Riezzo ◽  

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, in December 2020, the Italian government established a second home confinement during the Christmas holidays. These restrictions offered the opportunity to utilize a well-defined model for observing the consequences of lifestyle changes of healthy individuals. This study aimed at estimating in healthy subjects from Southern Italy the physical activity (PA), the presence and the severity of gastrointestinal (GI) symptoms, and the association between the possible worsening of GI health status and the PA levels. An adapted version of the International PA Questionnaire-short form (IPAQ-SF) and the Gastrointestinal Symptom Rating Scale (GSRS) were proposed through Google’s online survey platform in three different periods via WhatsAppTM to 499 healthy subjects (62% females) from Apulia (25%), Calabria (37%), and Campania (38%). Our results showed statistically significant changes during the home confinement: reduced energy expenditure (EE) among overweight subjects (−239.82, 95%CI −405.74; −73.89) or those who had high GSRS total score (−1079.54, 95%CI −2027.43; −131.66). An increase in GSRS total score was observed in overweight subjects, reaching statistical significance in those from Campania. Our study supports the importance of PA to reduce health risks, including those related to the possible onset of GI tract diseases.

2021 ◽  
Vol 11 (1) ◽  
K. Lithgow ◽  
H. Venkataraman ◽  
S. Hughes ◽  
H. Shah ◽  
J. Kemp-Blake ◽  

AbstractNeuroendocrine neoplasms are known to have heterogeneous biological behavior. G3 neuroendocrine tumours (NET G3) are characterized by well-differentiated morphology and Ki67 > 20%. The prognosis of this disease is understood to be intermediate between NET G2 and neuroendocrine carcinoma (NEC). Clinical management of NET G3 is challenging due to limited data to inform treatment strategies. We describe clinical characteristics, treatment, and outcomes in a large single centre cohort of patients with gastroenteropancreatic NET G3. Data was reviewed from 26 cases managed at Queen Elizabeth Hospital, Birmingham, UK, from 2012 to 2019. Most commonly the site of the primary tumour was unknown and majority of cases with identifiable primaries originated in the GI tract. Majority of cases demonstrated somatostatin receptor avidity. Median Ki67 was 30%, and most cases had stage IV disease at diagnosis. Treatment options included surgery, somatostatin analogs (SSA), and chemotherapy with either platinum-based or temozolomide-based regimens. Estimated progression free survival was 4 months following initiation of SSA and 3 months following initiation of chemotherapy. Disease control was observed following treatment in 5/11 patients treated with chemotherapy. Estimated median survival was 19 months; estimated 1 year survival was 60% and estimated 2 year survival was 13%. NET G3 is a heterogeneous group of tumours and patients which commonly have advanced disease at presentation. Prognosis is typically poor, though select cases may respond to treatment with SSA and/or chemotherapy. Further study is needed to compare efficacy of different treatment strategies for this disease.

Gut ◽  
2021 ◽  
pp. gutjnl-2021-325210
Jonathon Snook ◽  
Neeraj Bhala ◽  
Ian L P Beales ◽  
David Cannings ◽  
Chris Kightley ◽  

Iron deficiency anaemia (IDA) is a major cause of morbidity and burden of disease worldwide. It can generally be diagnosed by blood testing and remedied by iron replacement therapy (IRT) using the oral or intravenous route. The many causes of iron deficiency include poor dietary intake and malabsorption of dietary iron, as well as a number of significant gastrointestinal (GI) pathologies. Because blood is iron-rich it can result from chronic blood loss, and this is a common mechanism underlying the development of IDA—for example, as a consequence of menstrual or GI blood loss.Approximately a third of men and postmenopausal women presenting with IDA have an underlying pathological abnormality, most commonly in the GI tract. Therefore optimal management of IDA requires IRT in combination with appropriate investigation to establish the underlying cause. Unexplained IDA in all at-risk individuals is an accepted indication for fast-track secondary care referral in the UK because GI malignancies can present in this way, often in the absence of specific symptoms. Bidirectional GI endoscopy is the standard diagnostic approach to examination of the upper and lower GI tract, though radiological scanning is an alternative in some situations for assessing the large bowel. In recurrent or refractory IDA, wireless capsule endoscopy plays an important role in assessment of the small bowel.IDA may present in primary care or across a range of specialties in secondary care, and because of this and the insidious nature of the condition it has not always been optimally managed despite the considerable burden of disease— with investigation sometimes being inappropriate, incorrectly timed or incomplete, and the role of IRT for symptom relief neglected. It is therefore important that contemporary guidelines for the management of IDA are available to all clinicians. This document is a revision of previous British Society of Gastroenterology guidelines, updated in the light of subsequent evidence and developments.

David Smith ◽  
Daniel R. G. Price ◽  
Alison Burrells ◽  
Marc N. Faber ◽  
Katie A. Hildersley ◽  

Gastrointestinal (GI) infections in sheep have significant implications for animal health, welfare and productivity, as well as being a source of zoonotic pathogens. Interactions between pathogens and epithelial cells at the mucosal surface play a key role in determining the outcome of GI infections; however, the inaccessibility of the GI tract in vivo significantly limits the ability to study such interactions in detail. We therefore developed ovine epithelial organoids representing physiologically important gastric and intestinal sites of infection, specifically the abomasum (analogous to the stomach in monogastrics) and ileum. We show that both abomasal and ileal organoids form self-organising three-dimensional structures with a single epithelial layer and a central lumen that are stable in culture over serial passage. We performed RNA-seq analysis on abomasal and ileal tissue from multiple animals and on organoids across multiple passages and show the transcript profile of both abomasal and ileal organoids cultured under identical conditions are reflective of the tissue from which they were derived and that the transcript profile in organoids is stable over at least five serial passages. In addition, we demonstrate that the organoids can be successfully cryopreserved and resuscitated, allowing long-term storage of organoid lines, thereby reducing the number of animals required as a source of tissue. We also report the first published observations of a helminth infecting gastric and intestinal organoids by challenge with the sheep parasitic nematode Teladorsagia circumcincta, demonstrating the utility of these organoids for pathogen co-culture experiments. Finally, the polarity in the abomasal and ileal organoids can be inverted to make the apical surface directly accessible to pathogens or their products, here shown by infection of apical-out organoids with the zoonotic enteric bacterial pathogen Salmonella enterica serovar Typhimurium. In summary, we report a simple and reliable in vitro culture system for generation and maintenance of small ruminant intestinal and gastric organoids. In line with 3Rs principals, use of such organoids will reduce and replace animals in host-pathogen research.

2021 ◽  
Meng Li ◽  
Chun-Yan Weng ◽  
Cheng Ye ◽  
Yi-Hong Fan ◽  
Bin Lu ◽  

Abstract Indolent T-cell lymphoproliferative disorder of the gastrointestinal tract (ITLPD-GI), a primary tumor forming in the GI tract, represents a rarely diagnosed clonal T-cell disease with a protracted clinical course. This report presents a 45-year-old male patient with a 6-year history of anal fistula and a more than 10-year history of recurrent diarrhea, who was not rightly diagnosed until the occurrence of complications such as intestinal perforation. Postsurgical histopathological analysis confirmed the diagnosis of CD8+ ITLPD-GI, with a combination of hematoxylin-eosin staining (H&E) staining, immunohistochemistry (IHC) and TCRβ/γ clonal gene rearrangement. Individuals with this scarce lymphoma frequently show non-specific symptoms, which are hardly recognized. So far, indolent CD8+ ITLPD-GI has not been comprehensively examined. The current mini-review focused on available reports evaluating indolent CD8+ ITLPD-GI cases, discussing future directions for improved differential diagnosis, genetic and epigenetic alterations, and therapeutic target identification.

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