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      Gut microbiota–derived short-chain fatty acids and kidney diseases

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          Abstract

          Gut microbiota and its metabolites play pivotal roles in host physiology and pathology. Short-chain fatty acids (SCFAs), as a group of metabolites, exert positive regulatory effects on energy metabolism, hormone secretion, immune inflammation, hypertension, and cancer. The functions of SCFAs are related to their activation of transmembrane G protein-coupled receptors and their inhibition of histone acetylation. Though controversial, growing evidence suggests that SCFAs, which regulate inflammation, oxidative stress, and fibrosis, have been involved in kidney disease through the activation of the gut–kidney axis; however, the molecular relationship among gut microbiota–derived metabolites, signaling pathways, and kidney disease remains to be elucidated. This review will provide an overview of the physiology and functions of SCFAs in kidney disease.

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          Most cited references 74

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          Short-chain fatty acids and human colonic function: roles of resistant starch and nonstarch polysaccharides.

          Resistant starch (RS) is starch and products of its small intestinal digestion that enter the large bowel. It occurs for various reasons including chemical structure, cooking of food, chemical modification, and food mastication. Human colonic bacteria ferment RS and nonstarch polysaccharides (NSP; major components of dietary fiber) to short-chain fatty acids (SCFA), mainly acetate, propionate, and butyrate. SCFA stimulate colonic blood flow and fluid and electrolyte uptake. Butyrate is a preferred substrate for colonocytes and appears to promote a normal phenotype in these cells. Fermentation of some RS types favors butyrate production. Measurement of colonic fermentation in humans is difficult, and indirect measures (e.g., fecal samples) or animal models have been used. Of the latter, rodents appear to be of limited value, and pigs or dogs are preferable. RS is less effective than NSP in stool bulking, but epidemiological data suggest that it is more protective against colorectal cancer, possibly via butyrate. RS is a prebiotic, but knowledge of its other interactions with the microflora is limited. The contribution of RS to fermentation and colonic physiology seems to be greater than that of NSP. However, the lack of a generally accepted analytical procedure that accommodates the major influences on RS means this is yet to be established.
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            Functional characterization of human receptors for short chain fatty acids and their role in polymorphonuclear cell activation.

            Short chain fatty acids (SCFAs), including acetate, propionate, and butyrate, are produced at high concentration by bacteria in the gut and subsequently released in the bloodstream. Basal acetate concentrations in the blood (about 100 microm) can further increase to millimolar concentrations following alcohol intake. It was known previously that SCFAs can activate leukocytes, particularly neutrophils. In the present work, we have identified two previously orphan G protein-coupled receptors, GPR41 and GPR43, as receptors for SCFAs. Propionate was the most potent agonist for both GPR41 and GPR43. Acetate was more selective for GPR43, whereas butyrate and isobutyrate were more active on GPR41. The two receptors were coupled to inositol 1,4,5-trisphosphate formation, intracellular Ca2+ release, ERK1/2 activation, and inhibition of cAMP accumulation. They exhibited, however, a differential coupling to G proteins; GPR41 coupled exclusively though the Pertussis toxin-sensitive Gi/o family, whereas GPR43 displayed a dual coupling through Gi/o and Pertussis toxin-insensitive Gq protein families. The broad expression profile of GPR41 in a number of tissues does not allow us to infer clear hypotheses regarding its biological functions. In contrast, the highly selective expression of GPR43 in leukocytes, particularly polymorphonuclear cells, suggests a role in the recruitment of these cell populations toward sites of bacterial infection. The pharmacology of GPR43 matches indeed the effects of SCFAs on neutrophils, in terms of intracellular Ca2+ release and chemotaxis. Such a neutrophil-specific SCFA receptor is potentially involved in the development of a variety of diseases characterized by either excessive or inefficient neutrophil recruitment and activation, such as inflammatory bowel diseases or alcoholism-associated immune depression. GPR43 might therefore constitute a target allowing us to modulate immune responses in these pathological situations.
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              Anti-inflammatory properties of the short-chain fatty acids acetate and propionate: a study with relevance to inflammatory bowel disease.

              To compare the anti-inflammatory properties of butyrate with two other SCFAs, namely acetate and propionate, which have less well-documented effects on inflammation. The effect of SCFAs on cytokine release from human neutrophils was studied with ELISA. SCFA-dependent modulation of NF-kappaB reporter activity was assessed in the human colon adenocarcinoma cell line, Colo320DM. Finally, the effect of SCFAs on gene expression and cytokine release, measured with RT-PCR and ELISA, respectively, was studied in mouse colon organ cultures established from colitic mice. Acetate, propionate and butyrate at 30 mmol/L decreased LPS-stimulated TNFalpha release from neutrophils, without affecting IL-8 protein release. All SCFAs dose dependently inhibited NF-kappaB reporter activity in Colo320DM cells. Propionate dose-dependently suppressed IL-6 mRNA and protein release from colon organ cultures and comparative studies revealed that propionate and butyrate at 30 mmol/L caused a strong inhibition of immune-related gene expression, whereas acetate was less effective. A similar inhibition was achieved with the proteasome inhibitor MG-132, but not the p38 MAPK inhibitor SB203580. All SCFAs decreased IL-6 protein release from organ cultures. In the present study propionate and butyrate were equipotent, whereas acetate was less effective, at suppressing NF-kappaB reporter activity, immune-related gene expression and cytokine release in vitro. Our findings suggest that propionate and acetate, in addition to butyrate, could be useful in the treatment of inflammatory disorders, including IBD.
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                Author and article information

                Journal
                Drug Des Devel Ther
                Drug Des Devel Ther
                Drug Design, Development and Therapy
                Drug Design, Development and Therapy
                Dove Medical Press
                1177-8881
                2017
                11 December 2017
                : 11
                : 3531-3542
                Affiliations
                Kidney Research Institute, Department of Nephrology, West China Hospital of Sichuan University, Chengdu 610041, China
                Author notes
                Correspondence: Liang Ma; Ping Fu, Kidney Research Institute, Department of Nephrology, West China Hospital of Sichuan University, No. 37 Guoxue Alley, Wuhou District, Chengdu 610041, China, Tel +86 28 8516 4167; +86 28 8542 1085, Email liang_m@ 123456scu.edu.cn ; fupinghx@ 123456163.com
                Article
                dddt-11-3531
                10.2147/DDDT.S150825
                5729884
                © 2017 Li et al. This work is published and licensed by Dove Medical Press Limited

                The full terms of this license are available at https://www.dovepress.com/terms.php and incorporate the Creative Commons Attribution – Non Commercial (unported, v3.0) License ( http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/3.0/). By accessing the work you hereby accept the Terms. Non-commercial uses of the work are permitted without any further permission from Dove Medical Press Limited, provided the work is properly attributed.

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