According to a pre-clinical study from the University of Sydney, A high-protein diet
can alter the microbiota in the gut, causing an immunological response. The study,
according to researchers, advances our knowledge of how nutrition affects gut health
and immunity. High luminal succinate concentrations cause intestinal bacteria to
experience cellular stress and release reactive oxygen species (ROS), which
encourages vesicle formation and boosts the generation of extracellular vesicles
derived from bacteria.
According to Associate Professor Laurence Macia of the University's Charles Perkins
Centre and Faculty of Medicine and Health, "the focus of our work is on how the gut
microbiota—the billions of bacteria that populate the gut—affects the immune
"Our ultimate goal is to comprehend how to manipulate bacteria to optimize health,
and we are aware that changing one's food is one of the simplest ways to change
However, scientists have historically concentrated on dietary fiber's function in
preserving a healthy gut.
The Charles Perkins Centre team utilized advanced modeling in this groundbreaking
study, which was published in Nature Communications, to examine the effects of 10
meals with various ratios of mice's macronutrients — protein, lipids, and
carbohydrates — on their health.
They found that consuming a lot of protein altered the makeup and activity of the gut
Bacterial extracellular vesicles, complex cargo holding bacterial information such as
DNA and protein, are produced more frequently in mice fed a high-protein diet. The
body then saw this activity as a danger and set off a chain of events that led to
immune cells penetrating the gut wall.
Here, we are uncovering the links between diet, gut health & immunity that protein
had a significant impact on the gut microbiota; however, the type of activity, rather
than the type of bacteria present, was more important. In essence, we found a new
protein-mediated channel of communication between the host and gut microbes,"
said Associate Professor Macia.
Although this research might apply to people, the researchers note immune system
stimulation can have either positive or negative effects.
According to the lead author and post-doctoral researcher Jian Tan, "by increasing
antibodies in the gut, you may see strong protection against potential pathogens, for
example, salmonella, an activated immune system could indicate that you are at high
risk of colitis, an inflammatory bowel disease, or autoimmune conditions like
With the effects of contemporary diets on the population, Western nations are
experiencing reduced incidence of gastrointestinal infections but increasing rates of
The interdisciplinary collaboration for which the Charles Perkins Centre has become
renowned allowed for this progress in knowledge.
The study used the ecologically-based geometric framework for nutrition created by
Professors Stephen Simpson and David Raubenheimer.
According to Professor Simpson, Academic Director of the Charles Perkins Centre,
"the 'nutritional geometry' framework allows us to plot foods, meals, diets, and
dietary patterns together based on their nutrient composition. So, it helps
researchers to observe otherwise overlooked patterns in the links between certain
diets, health, and disease."
"The Charles Perkins Centre is the only place where this concept could have been
executed for the first time in immunology. The possibilities for the future thrill us,
according to Associate Professor Macia.