Indigenous bacteria from the gut microbiota regulate host serotonin biosynthesis.
ABSTRACT: The gastrointestinal (GI) tract contains much of the body's serotonin (5-hydroxytryptamine, 5-HT), but mechanisms controlling the metabolism of gut-derived 5-HT remain unclear. Here, we demonstrate that the microbiota plays a critical role in regulating host 5-HT. Indigenous spore-forming bacteria (Sp) from the mouse and human microbiota promote 5-HT biosynthesis from colonic enterochromaffin cells (ECs), which supply 5-HT to the mucosa, lumen, and circulating platelets. Importantly, microbiota-dependent effects on gut 5-HT significantly impact host physiology, modulating GI motility and platelet function. We identify select fecal metabolites that are increased by Sp and that elevate 5-HT in chromaffin cell cultures, suggesting direct metabolic signaling of gut microbes to ECs. Furthermore, elevating luminal concentrations of particular microbial metabolites increases colonic and blood 5-HT in germ-free mice. Altogether, these findings demonstrate that Sp are important modulators of host 5-HT and further highlight a key role for host-microbiota interactions in regulating fundamental 5-HT-related biological processes.
Project description:Gut microbiota alterations have been described in several diseases with altered gastrointestinal (GI) motility, and awareness is increasing regarding the role of the gut microbiome in modulating GI function. Serotonin [5-hydroxytryptamine (5-HT)] is a key regulator of GI motility and secretion. To determine the relationship among gut microbes, colonic contractility, and host serotonergic gene expression, we evaluated mice that were germ-free (GF) or humanized (HM; ex-GF colonized with human gut microbiota). 5-HT reduced contractile duration in both GF and HM colons. Microbiota from HM and conventionally raised (CR) mice significantly increased colonic mRNAs Tph1 [(tryptophan hydroxylase) 1, rate limiting for mucosal 5-HT synthesis; P < 0.01] and chromogranin A (neuroendocrine secretion; P < 0.01), with no effect on monoamine oxidase A (serotonin catabolism), serotonin receptor 5-HT4, or mouse serotonin transporter. HM and CR mice also had increased colonic Tph1 protein (P < 0.05) and 5-HT concentrations (GF, 17 ± 3 ng/mg; HM, 25 ± 2 ng/mg; and CR, 35 ± 3 ng/mg; P < 0.05). Enterochromaffin (EC) cell numbers (cells producing 5-HT) were unchanged. Short-chain fatty acids (SCFAs) promoted TPH1 transcription in BON cells (human EC cell model). Thus, gut microbiota acting through SCFAs are important determinants of enteric 5-HT production and homeostasis.
Project description:Peripheral serotonin (5-hydroxytryptamine: 5-HT) synthesized in the intestine by enterochromaffin cells (ECs), plays an important role in the regulation of peristaltic of the gut, epithelial secretion and promotes the development and maintenance of the enteric neurons. Recent studies showed that the indigenous gut microbiota modulates 5-HT signalling and that ECs use sensory receptors to detect dietary and microbiota-derived signals from the lumen to subsequently transduce the information to the nervous system. We hypothesized that Clostridium ramosum by increasing gut 5-HT availability consequently contributes to high-fat diet-induced obesity. Using germ-free mice and mice monoassociated with C. ramosum, intestinal cell lines and mouse organoids, we demonstrated that bacterial cell components stimulate host 5-HT secretion and program the differentiation of colonic intestinal stem progenitors toward the secretory 5-HT-producing lineage. An elevated 5-HT level regulates the expression of major proteins involved in intestinal fatty acid absorption in vitro, suggesting that the presence of C. ramosum in the gut promotes 5-HT secretion and thereby could facilitates intestinal lipid absorption and the development of obesity.
Project description:5-HT storing enterochromaffin (EC) cells are believed to respond to nutrient and gut microbial components, and 5-HT receptor-expressing afferent vagal neurons have been described to be the major sensors of nutrients in the GI-tract. However, the molecular mechanism through which EC cells sense nutrients and gut microbiota is still unclear.TPH1, the 5-HT generating enzyme, and chromogranin A, an acidic protein responsible for secretory granule storage of 5-HT, were highly enriched in FACS-purified EC cells from both small intestine and colon using a 5-HT antibody-based method. Surprisingly, EC cells from the small intestine did not express GPCR sensors for lipid and protein metabolites, such as FFAR1, GPR119, GPBAR1 (TGR5), CaSR, and GPR142, in contrast to the neighboring GLP-1 storing enteroendocrine cell. However, the GLP-1 receptor was particularly highly expressed and enriched in EC cells as judged both by qPCR and by immunohistochemistry using a receptor antibody. GLP-1 receptor agonists robustly stimulated 5-HT secretion from intestinal preparations using both HPLC and a specific amperometric method. Colonic EC cells expressed many different types of known and potential GPCR sensors of microbial metabolites including three receptors for SCFAs, i.e. FFAR2, OLF78, and OLF558 and receptors for aromatic acids, GPR35; secondary bile acids GPBAR1; and acyl-amides and lactate, GPR132.Nutrient metabolites apparently do not stimulate EC cells of the small intestine directly but through a paracrine mechanism involving GLP-1 secreted from neighboring enteroendocrine cells. In contrast, colonic EC cells are able to sense a multitude of different metabolites generated by the gut microbiota as well as gut hormones, including GLP-1.
Project description:Hypobaric hypoxia and dietary protein and fat intakes have been independently associated with an altered gastrointestinal (GI) environment and gut microbiota, but little is known regarding host-gut microbiota interactions at high altitude (HA) and the impact of diet macronutrient composition. This study aimed to determine the effect of dietary protein:fat ratio manipulation on the gut microbiota and GI barrier function during weight loss at high altitude (HA) and to identify associations between the gut microbiota and host responses to HA. Following sea-level (SL) testing, 17 healthy males were transported to HA (4,300 m) and randomly assigned to consume provided standard protein (SP; 1.1 g·kg-1·day-1, 39% fat) or higher protein (HP; 2.1 g·kg-1·day-1, 23% fat) carbohydrate-matched hypocaloric diets for 22 days. Fecal microbiota composition and metabolites, GI barrier function, GI symptoms, and acute mountain sickness (AMS) severity were measured. Macronutrient intake did not impact fecal microbiota composition, had only transient effects on microbiota metabolites, and had no effect on increases in small intestinal permeability, GI symptoms, and inflammation observed at HA. AMS severity was also unaffected by diet but in exploratory analyses was associated with higher SL-relative abundance of Prevotella, a known driver of interindividual variability in human gut microbiota composition, and greater microbiota diversity after AMS onset. Findings suggest that the gut microbiota may contribute to variability in host responses to HA independent of the dietary protein:fat ratio but should be considered preliminary and hypothesis generating due to the small sample size and exploratory nature of analyses associating the fecal microbiota and host responses to HA. NEW & NOTEWORTHY This study is the first to examine interactions among diet, the gut microbiota, and host responses to weight loss at high altitude (HA). Observed associations among the gut microbiota, weight loss at HA, and acute mountain sickness provide evidence that the microbiota may contribute to variability in host responses to HA. In contrast, dietary protein:fat ratio had only minimal, transient effects on gut microbiota composition and bacterial metabolites which were likely not of clinical consequence.
Project description:Lumenal glucose initiates changes in gastrointestinal (GI) function, including inhibition of gastric emptying, stimulation of pancreatic exocrine and endocrine secretion, and intestinal fluid secretion. Glucose stimulates the release of GI hormones and 5-hydroxytryptamine (5-HT), and activates intrinsic and extrinsic neuronal pathways to initiate changes in GI function. The precise mechanisms involved in luminal glucose-sensing are not clear; studying gut endocrine cells is difficult due to their sparse and irregular localization within the epithelium.Here we show a technique to determine activation of gut epithelial cells and the gut-brain pathway in vivo in rats using immunohistochemical detection of the activated, phosphorylated, form of calcium-calmodulin kinase II (pCaMKII).Perfusion of the gut with glucose (60?mg) increased pCaMKII immunoreactivity in 5-HT-expressing enterochromaffin (EC) cells, cytokeratin-18 immunopositive brush cells, but not in enterocytes or cholecystokinin-expressing cells. Lumenal glucose increased pCaMKII in neurons in the myenteric plexus and nodose ganglion, nucleus of the solitary tract, dorsal motor nucleus of the vagus and the arcuate nucleus. pCaMKII expression in neurons, but not in EC cells, was significantly attenuated by pretreatment with the 5-HT(3) R antagonist ondansetron. Deoxynojirimycin, a selective agonist for the putative glucose sensor, sodium-glucose cotransporter-3 (SGLT-3), mimicked the effects of glucose with increased pCaMKII in ECs and neurons; galactose had no effect.The data suggest that native EC cells in situ respond to glucose, possibly via SGLT-3, to activate intrinsic and extrinsic neurons and thereby regulate GI function.
Project description:The production and handling of serotonin (5-HT) is an important determinant of colonic motility and has been reported to be altered in gastrointestinal (GI) disorders such as irritable bowel syndrome (IBS). Recent studies suggest that the intestinal microbiota and sex of the host can influence expression of genes involved in 5-HT biosynthesis and signaling. While expression of genes in serotonergic pathways has been shown to be variable, it remains unclear whether genes within this pathway are coregulated. As a first step in that direction, we investigated potential correlations in relative mRNA expression of serotonergic genes, in the proximal colon isolated from male and female mice in different states of microbial association: germ-free (GF), humanized (ex-germ-free colonized with human gut microbiota, HM), and conventionally raised (CR) mice. Among the 10 pairwise comparisons conducted between five serotonergic transcripts, Tph1, Chga, Maoa, Slc6a4, and Htr4, we found a strong, positive correlation between colonic expression of Slc6a4 and Htr4 across different colonization states and sexes. We also identified a positive correlation between the expression of Tph1 and Chga; however, there were no correlations observed between any other tested pair of 5-HT-related transcripts. These data suggest that correlated expression of Slc6a4 and Htr4 likely involves coregulation of genes located on different chromosomes which modulate serotonergic activity in the gut. Further work will need to be done to understand the pathways and cell types responsible for this correlated expression, given the important role of 5-HT in gastrointestinal physiology.
Project description:BACKGROUND:The gut microbiota is closely associated with gastrointestinal (GI) motility disorder, but the mechanism(s) by which bacteria interact with and affect host GI motility remains unclear. In this study, through using metabolomic and metagenomic analyses, an animal model of neonatal maternal separation (NMS) characterized by accelerated colonic motility and gut dysbiosis was used to investigate the mechanism underlying microbiota-driven motility dysfunction. RESULTS:An excess of intracolonic saturated long-chain fatty acids (SLCFAs) was associated with enhanced bowel motility in NMS rats. Heptadecanoic acid (C17:0) and stearic acid (C18:0), as the most abundant odd- and even-numbered carbon SLCFAs in the colon lumen, can promote rat colonic muscle contraction and increase stool frequency. Increase of SLCFAs was positively correlated with elevated abundances of Prevotella, Lactobacillus, and Alistipes. Functional annotation found that the level of bacterial LCFA biosynthesis was highly enriched in NMS group. Essential synthetic genes Fabs were largely identified from the genera Prevotella, Lactobacillus, and Alistipes. Pseudo germ-free (GF) rats receiving fecal microbiota from NMS donors exhibited increased defecation frequency and upregulated bacterial production of intracolonic SLCFAs. Modulation of gut dysbiosis by neomycin effectively attenuated GI motility and reduced bacterial SLCFA generation in the colon lumen of NMS rats. CONCLUSIONS:These findings reveal a previously unknown relationship between gut bacteria, intracolonic SLCFAs, and host GI motility, suggesting the importance of SLCFA-producing bacteria in GI motility disorders. Further exploration of this relationship could lead to a precise medication targeting the gut microbiota for treating GI motility disorders.
Project description:The gut microbiota is able to modulate host physiology through the production of bioactive metabolites. Our recent studies suggest that changes in gut microbiota composition upon prebiotics supplementation alter tissue levels of PUFA-derived metabolites in mice. However, in vivo evidence that gut microbes produces PUFA-derived metabolites is lacking. This study aimed to decipher the contribution of gut microbes versus that of the host in PUFA-derived metabolite production.To achieve this goal, we compared the proportion of PUFA-derived metabolites and the expression of fatty acid desaturases in germ-free (GF) and conventionalized (CONV) mice fed either a low fat or Western diet. Higher concentrations of PUFA-derived metabolites were found in the colonic contents of conventionalized mice (CONV) mice compared to GF mice. The abundance of these metabolites in host tissues was modulated by dietary treatments but not by microbial status. Although microbial status did significantly influence desaturase expression, no correlations between host enzymes and tissue PUFA-derived metabolite levels were observed.Together, these results highlight the ability of the gut microbiota to produce PUFA-derived metabolites from dietary PUFA. However, microbial production of these metabolites in colonic contents is not necessarily associated with modifications of their concentration in host tissues.
Project description:Tong-Xie-Yao-Fang (TXYF) has been widely used for the treatment of diarrhea-predominant irritable bowel syndrome (IBS-D) in traditional Chinese medicine. However, its mechanism of action in the treatment of IBS-D remains to be fully understood. Recent reports have shown that Clostridium species in the gut can induce 5-HT production in the colon, which then contributes to IBS-D. Due to the wide use of TXYF in the clinical treatment of IBS-D and the close relationship between gut microbiota and IBS-D, we hypothesize that TXYF treats IBS-D by modulating gut microbiota and regulating colonic 5-HT levels. In this study, variation analysis of 16S rRNA was conducted to evaluate changes in the distribution of gut microbiota in IBS-D model rats after TXYF treatment. Moreover, we investigated whether TXYF could affect colonic 5-HT levels in IBS-D model rats. We then performed fecal transplantation experiments to confirm the effects of TXYF on gut microbiota and 5-HT levels. We found that TXYF treatment can ameliorate IBS-D and regulate 5-HT levels in colon tissue homogenates. TXYF treatment also affected the diversity of gut microbiota and altered the relative abundance of Akkermansia and Clostridium sensu stricto 1 in gut flora populations. Finally, we showed that fecal transplantation from TXYF-treated rats could relieve IBS-D and regulate 5-HT levels in colon tissue homogenates. In conclusion, the present study demonstrates that TXYF treatment diminishes colonic 5-HT levels and alleviates the symptoms of IBS-D by favorably affecting microbiota levels in gut flora communities.
Project description:Enterochromaffin cell-derived serotonin (5-HT) promotes intestinal inflammation. We tested hypotheses that peripheral tryptophan hydroxylase (TPH) inhibitors, administered orally, block 5-HT biosynthesis and deplete 5-HT from enterochromaffin cells sufficiently to ameliorate intestinal inflammation; moreover, peripheral TPH inhibitors fail to enter the murine enteric nervous system (ENS) or central nervous systems and thus do not affect constitutive gastrointestinal motility.Two peripheral TPH inhibitors, LP-920540 and telotristat etiprate (LX1032; LX1606) were given orally to mice. Effects were measured on 5-HT levels in the gut, blood and brain, 5-HT immunoreactivity in the ENS, gastrointestinal motility and severity of trinitrobenzene sulfonic acid (TNBS)-induced colitis. Quantitation of clinical scores, histological damage and intestinal expression of inflammation-associated cytokines and chemokines with focused microarrays and real-time reverse transcriptase PCR were employed to evaluate the severity of intestinal inflammation.LP-920540 and LX1032 reduced 5-HT significantly in the gut and blood but not in the brain. Neither LP-920540 nor LX1032 decreased 5-HT immunoreactive neurons or fibres in the myenteric plexus and neither altered total gastrointestinal transit time, colonic motility or gastric emptying in mice. In contrast, oral LP-920540 and LX1032 reduced the severity of TNBS-induced colitis; the expression of 24% of 84 genes encoding inflammation-related cytokines and chemokines was lowered at least fourfold and the reduced expression of 17% was statistically significant.Observations suggest that that peripheral TPH inhibitors uncouple the positive linkage of enterochromaffin cell-derived 5-HT to intestinal inflammation. Because peripheral TPH inhibitors evidently do not enter the murine ENS, they lack deleterious effects on constitutive intestinal motility in mice.