A structured weight loss program increases gut microbiota phylogenetic diversity and reduces levels of Collinsella in obese type 2 diabetics: A pilot study.

Fabian Frost, Lena J Storck, Tim Kacprowski, Simone Gärtner, Malte Rühlemann, Corinna Bang, Andre Franke, Uwe Völker, Ali A Aghdassi, Antje Steveling, Julia Mayerle, Frank U Weiss, Georg Homuth, Markus M Lerch
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PloS one
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The global obesity epidemic constitutes a major cause of morbidity and mortality challenging public health care systems worldwide. Thus, a better understanding of its pathophysiology and the development of novel therapeutic options are urgently needed. Recently, alterations of the intestinal microbiome in the obese have been discussed as a promoting factor in the pathophysiology of obesity and as a contributing factor to related diseases such as type 2 diabetes and metabolic syndrome. The present pilot study investigated the effect of a structured weight loss program on fecal microbiota in obese type 2 diabetics. Twelve study subjects received a low-calorie formula diet for six weeks, followed by a nine week food reintroduction and stabilization period. Fecal microbiota were determined by 16S rRNA gene sequencing of stool samples at baseline, after six weeks and at the end of the study after fifteen weeks. All study subjects lost weight continuously throughout the program. Changes in fecal microbiota were most pronounced after six weeks of low-calorie formula diet, but reverted partially until the end of the study. However, the gut microbiota phylogenetic diversity increased persistently. The abundance of Collinsella, which has previously been associated with atherosclerosis, decreased significantly during the weight loss program. This study underlines the impact of dietary changes on the intestinal microbiome and further demonstrates the beneficial effects of weight loss on gut microbiota. Trial registration: ClinicalTrials.gov NCT02970838.