Study: Gut bacteria nearly recovers after antibiotics regimen

Gut bacteria, which helps stave off
chronic diseases, nearly recovered six months after a cocktail of three
injected antibiotics, according to a study in Denmark.

The findings, which were published Tuesday in the journal Nature
Microbiology, refute speculation that repetitive use of antibiotics
deprives people of gut microbiota and leads to adverse health effects,
including obesity, diabetes, asthma and inflammatory intestinal

The gut is part of the digestive system that breaks down foods and
absorbs nutrients that support our body's functions. The mouth,
esophagus, stomach and intestines are part of the gastrointestinal

"We show that the gut bacterial community of healthy adults are
resilient and able to recover after short-term simultaneous exposure to
three different antibiotics," study leader Dr. Oluf Pedersen, a
professor in basic metabolic research at the University of Copenhagen,
said in a press release. "However, our findings also suggest that
exposure to broad-spectrum antibiotics may dilute the diversity of the
intestinal bacterial ecosystem."

With this in mind, Pedersen urges caution in using antibiotics.

"Antibiotics can be a blessing for preserving human health but should
only be used based upon clear evidence for a bacterial cause of
infection," Pedersen said.

Pedersen and his colleagues from the University of Copenhagen as well as
the Steno Diabetes Center Copenhagen studied three antibiotics given to
12 young healthy men for four days. Administering of these so-called
"last-resort" antibiotics -- meropenem, gentamicin and vancomycin -- was
designed to mimic actual treatments in intensive care units.

The cocktail initially caused an almost complete eradication of gut
bacteria. But there was gradual recovery of most bacterial species over
six months.

Still missing were nine of the common beneficial bacteria. In addition,
some new potentially non-desirable bacteria had developed in the gut.

The gut contains trillions of bacteria, including hundreds of different
bacterial species with antibiotic-resistant genes. The genes led to the
replenishment of bacteria in the gut.

"In this case, it is good that we can regenerate our gut microbiota
which is important for our general health," Pedersen said. "The concern,
however, relates to the potentially permanent loss of beneficial
bacteria after multiple exposures to antibiotics during our lifetime."

He noted that Western populations have a considerably lower diversity of
their gut microbiota than people living in certain parts of Africa and

"One possible explanation for this may be the widespread use of antibiotics in treatment of infectious diseases," Pedersen said.

Geezgo for free. Use Geezgo's end-to-end encrypted Chat with your
Closenets (friends, relatives, colleague etc) in personalized ways.

Post a Comment

Previous Post Next Post