Is eating behavior manipulated by the gastrointestinal microbiota? Evolutionary pressures and potential mechanisms.
Bioessays. 2014 Aug 8. doi: 10.1002/bies.201400071. [Epub ahead of print]
Joe Alcock 1, Carlo C. Maley 2,3,4, cmaley at alum.mit.edu and C. Athena Aktipis 2,3,4,5
1 Department of Emergency Medicine, University of New Mexico, Albuquerque, NM, USA
2 Center for Evolution and Cancer, Helen Diller Family Comprehensive Cancer Center, San Francisco, CA, USA
3 Department of Surgery, University of California San Francisco, San Francisco, CA, USA
4 Wissenschaftskolleg zu Berlin, (Institute for Advanced Study Berlin), Berlin, Germany
5 Department of Psychology, Arizona State University, Tempe, AZ, USA
Microbes in the gastrointestinal tract are under selective pressure to manipulate host eating behavior to increase their fitness, sometimes at the expense of host fitness. Microbes may do this through two potential strategies:
- (i) generating cravings for foods that they specialize on or foods that suppress their competitors, or
- (ii) inducing dysphoria until we eat foods that enhance their fitness.
We review several potential mechanisms for microbial control over eating behavior including
- microbial influence on reward and satiety pathways,
- production of toxins that alter mood,
- changes to receptors including taste receptors, and
- hijacking of the vagus nerve, the neural axis between the gut and the brain.
We also review the evidence for alternative explanations for cravings and unhealthy eating behavior.
Because microbiota are easily manipulatable by
- fecal transplants, and
- dietary changes,
altering our microbiota offers a tractable approach to otherwise intractable problems of obesity and unhealthy eating.
© 2014 WILEY Periodicals, Inc.
Note: dysphoria =a state of unease, dissatisfaction, anxiety, restlessness, . . .
All items in categories Genes AND Obesity
- Obesity associated with poor Vitamin D genes (VDR in this study) – Jan 2018
- Gut genes related to important disease changed in Obese with 2,000 IU for 12 weeks – May 2019
- Obesity cut semi-activation of Vitamin D in half (mice) – Jan 2019
- Obesity might be related to Vitamin D genes – July 2018
- Vitamin D restricted in getting to cells by genes, obesity, etc – Jan 2017
- Multiple Sclerosis and obesity share some gene problems (as well as low vitamin D) – June 2016
- Vitamin D may block the obesity gene (FTO) – Jan 2014
- Vitamin D roles in obesity: genetics and cell signaling – June 2013
- Obese have 50 percent less of two enzymes in fatty tissue to process vitamin D – May 2013
- No apparent genetic association between vitamin D and obesity – Feb 2013
- Genes indicate that Obesity causes vitamin D deficiency – Feb 2013
All items in categories Antibiotics AND Obesity
- Omega-3 in infancy reduces Obesity following antibiotic (confirmed in rats, suspected in humans) – Feb 2016
- Antibiotic usage US map is very similar to obesity US map - June 2015
- Obesity causes half a million cancer deaths annually – mainly in developed countries – Jan 2015
- 1.8X increased risk of Obesity if antibiotics were used during pregnancy – Nov 2014
- What you eat is a function of what your gut flora wants – Aug 2014
- Low-level antibiotics causes weight gain in mice (and most mammals) – Aug 2014
- Antibiotics and Vitamin D are associated with many of the same diseases
- Reasons for low response to vitamin D
- Microbiome: A complicated relationship status Nature April 2014
Nice study - full-text online
Sidebar: “Microbial genes are a much better readout of whether you're likely to be obese or not than human genes are.”
- Do gut bacteria control your mind? Kurzweilai Aug 2014