Individualized responses of gut microbiota to dietary intervention modeled in humanized mice

Samuel A. Smits, Angela Marcobal, Steven Higginbottom, Justin L. Sonnenburg, Purna C. Kashyap

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

26 Scopus citations


Diet plays an important role in shaping the structure and function of the gut microbiota. The microbes and microbial products in turn can influence various aspects of host physiology. One promising route to affect host function and restore health is by altering the gut microbiome using dietary intervention. The individuality of the microbiome may pose a significant challenge, so we sought to determine how different microbiotas respond to the same dietary intervention in a controlled setting. We modeled gut microbiotas from three healthy donors in germfree mice and defined compositional and functional alteration following a change in dietary microbiota-accessible carbohydrates (MACs). The three gut communities exhibited responses that differed markedly in magnitude and in the composition of microbiota-derived metabolites. Adjustments in community membership did not correspond to the magnitude of changes in the microbial metabolites, highlighting potential challenges in predicting functional responses from compositional data and the need to assess multiple microbiota parameters following dietary interventions.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numbere00098
Issue number5
StatePublished - Sep 1 2016


  • Function
  • Gastrointestinal
  • Metabolite
  • Obesity
  • Prebiotic
  • Precision

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Microbiology
  • Physiology
  • Biochemistry
  • Ecology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics
  • Modeling and Simulation
  • Molecular Biology
  • Genetics
  • Computer Science Applications


Dive into the research topics of 'Individualized responses of gut microbiota to dietary intervention modeled in humanized mice'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this