Gut Microbiomes and Their Impact on Human Health
The gut microbiome encompasses the large repertoire of microbes in the gastrointestinal system and their collective symbiotic functions for the host, viz., protection against opportunistic pathogens, body’s immune system, extraction of nutrients and energy from diet, fermentation of non-digestible carbohydrates, homeostasis, etc. Further, dysbiosis of the gut microbiome is associated with diverse human diseases including inflammatory bowel disease (IBD), cancer, type 2 diabetes (T2D), obesity, etc. Composition of the gut microbiome has been characterized through a combination of microbial culture techniques and metagenomic approach that helped in understanding the impact of gut microbiome on human health and disease. Moreover, divergences in dietary habits and varied geographical niches have a role in streamlining the diversity among gut microbiomes of different populations. Further, relative increase in Firmicutes and decrease in Bacteroidetes in the gut of people living in colder climates of higher latitudes are endowed with more storage of energy and fat from a given diet. In the case of neonates, the gut microbiota undergoes transformations and has a major role in nutrition and the development of immune system. Furthermore, the gut microbiota has been used as potential probiotics for improving the intestinal microbial balance.
KeywordsHuman gut microbiome Metagenome Symbiosis Dysbiosis Diet Geographical niche Probiotic Prebiotic Fecal transplantation
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