Toward the comprehensive understanding of the gut ecosystem via metabolomics-based integrated omics approach

Abstract

Recent advances in DNA sequencing and mass spectrometry technologies have allowed us to collect more data on microbiome and metabolome to assess the influence of the gut microbiota on human health at a whole-systems level. Major advances in metagenomics and metabolomics technologies have shown that the gut microbiota contributes to host overall health status to a large extent. As such, the gut microbiota is often likened to a measurable and functional organ consisting of prokaryotic cells, which creates the unique gut ecosystem together with the host eukaryotic cells. In this review, we discuss in detail the relationship between gut microbiota and its metabolites like choline, bile acids, phenols, and short-chain fatty acids in the host health and etiopathogenesis of various pathological states such as multiple sclerosis, autism, obesity, diabetes, and chronic kidney disease. By integrating metagenomic and metabolomic information on a systems biology-wide approach, we would be better able to understand this interplay between gut microbiome and host metabolism. Integration of the microbiome, metatranscriptome, and metabolome information will pave the way toward an improved holistic understanding of the complex mammalian superorganism. Through the modeling of metabolic interactions between lifestyle, diet, and microbiota, integrated omics-based understanding of the gut ecosystem is the new avenue, providing exciting novel therapeutic approaches for optimal host health.

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Correspondence to Shinji Fukuda.

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Wanping Aw and Shinji Fukuda contributed equally to this work.

This article is a contribution to the Special Issue on Microbiome, Immunity and Inflammation - Guest Editor: Hiroshi Ohno

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Aw, W., Fukuda, S. Toward the comprehensive understanding of the gut ecosystem via metabolomics-based integrated omics approach. Semin Immunopathol 37, 5–16 (2015). https://doi.org/10.1007/s00281-014-0456-2

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Keywords

  • Gut ecosystem
  • Metabolomics
  • Choline
  • Bile acid
  • Phenol
  • Short-chain fatty acid