The gut microbiota, health and dietary iron

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October 3, 2018 @ 7:30 pm – 9:00 pm
Smokin Billy's
61 St Mary's Butts
Reading RG1 2LG

Andrea Monteagudo, Arvind Salunkhe, Kang Ooi, Ishawu Iddrisu and Simon Andrews present The gut microbiota, health and dietary iron

The ~100 trillion bacteria that reside in our gut (the microbiota) deliver a range of health benefits, such as generation of vital vitamins, harvesting energy from the diet and protection against pathogens.  The composition of our microbiota is greatly influenced by environmental factors, in particular the diet.  Changes in the composition of the gut microbiota arise as a result of various stresses, such as antibiotics and  an unhealthy diet, and such changes are associated with a range of negative consequences, e.g. obesity, inflammatory bowel disease and diabetes.  We have initiated a new collaborative project between Food & Nutrition and Biological Sciences (University of Reading), and the Centre for Global Health Research (University of Cambridge) investigating the effect of essential micronutrients (iron, and also zinc) on our microbiota. Our aim is to determine how these factors affect our gut flora and whether changes in composition or activity driven by micronutrients might be beneficial or harmful.   The research team (led by Simon Andrews) will discuss the background to the project, topical issues related to health and the microbiota, and indicate the experimental approaches adopted in order to progress the goals of the project.

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