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      Akkermansia muciniphila as a Model Case for the Development of an Improved Quantitative RPA Microbiome Assay


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          Changes in the population levels of specific bacterial species within the gut microbiome have been linked to a variety of illnesses. Most assays that determine the relative abundance of specific taxa are based on amplification and sequencing of stable phylogenetic gene regions. Such lab-based analysis requires pre-analytical sample preservation and storage that have been shown to introduce biases in the characterization of microbial profiles. Recombinase polymerase amplification (RPA) is an isothermal nucleic acid amplification method that employs commercially available, easy-to-use freeze-dried enzyme pellets that can be used to analyze specimens rapidly in the field or clinic, using a portable fluorometer. Immediate analysis of diverse bacterial communities can lead to a more accurate quantification of relative bacterial abundance. In this study, we discovered that universal bacterial 16S ribosomal DNA primers give false-positive signals in RPA analysis because manufacturing host Escherichia coli DNA is present in the RPA reagents. The manufacturer of RPA reagents advises against developing an RPA assay that detects the presence of E. coli due to the presence of contaminating E. coli DNA in the reaction buffer ( www.twistdx.co.uk/). We, therefore, explored four strategies to deplete or fragment extraneous DNA in RPA reagents while preserving enzyme activity: metal-chelate affinity chromatography, sonication, DNA cleavage using methylation-dependent restriction endonucleases, and DNA depletion using anti-DNA antibodies. Removing DNA with anti-DNA antibodies enabled the development of a quantitative RPA microbiome assay capable of determining the relative abundance of the physiologically-important bacterium Akkermansia muciniphila in human feces.

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          Most cited references43

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          The gut microbiome in health and in disease

          Recent technological advancements and expanded efforts have led to a tremendous growth in the collective knowledge of the human microbiome. This review will highlight some of the important recent findings in this area of research.
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            Responses of Gut Microbiota and Glucose and Lipid Metabolism to Prebiotics in Genetic Obese and Diet-Induced Leptin-Resistant Mice

            OBJECTIVE To investigate deep and comprehensive analysis of gut microbial communities and biological parameters after prebiotic administration in obese and diabetic mice. RESEARCH DESIGN AND METHODS Genetic (ob/ob) or diet-induced obese and diabetic mice were chronically fed with prebiotic-enriched diet or with a control diet. Extensive gut microbiota analyses, including quantitative PCR, pyrosequencing of the 16S rRNA, and phylogenetic microarrays, were performed in ob/ob mice. The impact of gut microbiota modulation on leptin sensitivity was investigated in diet-induced leptin-resistant mice. Metabolic parameters, gene expression, glucose homeostasis, and enteroendocrine-related L-cell function were documented in both models. RESULTS In ob/ob mice, prebiotic feeding decreased Firmicutes and increased Bacteroidetes phyla, but also changed 102 distinct taxa, 16 of which displayed a >10-fold change in abundance. In addition, prebiotics improved glucose tolerance, increased L-cell number and associated parameters (intestinal proglucagon mRNA expression and plasma glucagon-like peptide-1 levels), and reduced fat-mass development, oxidative stress, and low-grade inflammation. In high fat–fed mice, prebiotic treatment improved leptin sensitivity as well as metabolic parameters. CONCLUSIONS We conclude that specific gut microbiota modulation improves glucose homeostasis, leptin sensitivity, and target enteroendocrine cell activity in obese and diabetic mice. By profiling the gut microbiota, we identified a catalog of putative bacterial targets that may affect host metabolism in obesity and diabetes.
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              Akkermansia muciniphila inversely correlates with the onset of inflammation, altered adipose tissue metabolism and metabolic disorders during obesity in mice

              Recent evidence indicates that the gut microbiota plays a key role in the pathophysiology of obesity. Indeed, diet-induced obesity (DIO) has been associated to substantial changes in gut microbiota composition in rodent models. In the context of obesity, enhanced adiposity is accompanied by low-grade inflammation of this tissue but the exact link with gut microbial community remains unknown. In this report, we studied the consequences of high-fat diet (HFD) administration on metabolic parameters and gut microbiota composition over different periods of time. We found that Akkermansia muciniphila abundance was strongly and negatively affected by age and HFD feeding and to a lower extend Bilophila wadsworthia was the only taxa following an opposite trend. Different approaches, including multifactorial analysis, showed that these changes in Akkermansia muciniphila were robustly correlated with the expression of lipid metabolism and inflammation markers in adipose tissue, as well as several circulating parameters (i.e., glucose, insulin, triglycerides, leptin) from DIO mice. Thus, our data shows the existence of a link between gut Akkermansia muciniphila abundance and adipose tissue homeostasis on the onset of obesity, thus reinforcing the beneficial role of this bacterium on metabolism.

                Author and article information

                Front Cell Infect Microbiol
                Front Cell Infect Microbiol
                Front. Cell. Infect. Microbiol.
                Frontiers in Cellular and Infection Microbiology
                Frontiers Media S.A.
                12 July 2018
                : 8
                [1] 1Department of Biology and Biochemistry, University of Houston , Houston, TX, United States
                [2] 2Department of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering, University of Houston , Houston, TX, United States
                [3] 3Tecnológico de Monterrey-ITESM Campus Monterrey , Monterrey, Mexico
                Author notes

                Edited by: Pascale Alard, University of Louisville, United States

                Reviewed by: Elisabeth Margaretha Bik, uBiome, United States; James E. Graham, University of Louisville, United States

                *Correspondence: Richard C. Willson willson@ 123456uh.edu
                Copyright © 2018 Goux, Chavan, Crum, Kourentzi and Willson.

                This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY). The use, distribution or reproduction in other forums is permitted, provided the original author(s) and the copyright owner(s) are credited and that the original publication in this journal is cited, in accordance with accepted academic practice. No use, distribution or reproduction is permitted which does not comply with these terms.

                Page count
                Figures: 4, Tables: 1, Equations: 0, References: 75, Pages: 12, Words: 9467
                Funded by: National Science Foundation 10.13039/100000001
                Award ID: CBET-1511789
                Cellular and Infection Microbiology
                Original Research

                Infectious disease & Microbiology
                rpa,gut microbiome,akkermansia muciniphila,bacterial quantification,point-of-need


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