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Fiber-deficient diet inhibits colitis through the regulation of the niche and metabolism of a gut pathobiont


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Fiber-deficient diet inhibits colitis through the regulation of the niche and metabolism of a gut pathobiont

14 November 2023

Department of Microbiology and Immunology, University of Michigan
Department of Public Health and Preventive Medicine, Yamaguchi University, Japan

Peter Kuffa, Joseph M. Pickard, Misa Yamashita, Sadie R Shaus, Eric C Martens, Austin Campbell, Naohiro Inohara, Gabriel Nu´ n˜ ez, Roberta Carus

Exclusive enteral nutrition (EEN) with fiber-free diets is an effective steroid-sparing treatment to induce clinical remission in children with Crohn’s disease (CD). However, the mechanism underlying the beneficial effects of EEN remains obscure. Using a model of microbiota-dependent colitis with the hallmarks of CD, we find that the administration of a fiber-free diet prevents the development of colitis and inhibits intestinal inflammation in colitic animals. Remarkably, fiber-free diet alters the intestinal localization of Mucispirillum schaedleri, a mucus-dwelling pathobiont, which is required for triggering disease. Mechanistically, the absence of dietary fiber reduces nutrient availability and impairs the dissimilatory nitrate reduction to ammonia (DNRA) metabolic pathway of Mucispirillum, leading to its exclusion from the mucus layer and disease remission. Thus, appropriate localization of the specific pathobiont in the mucus layer is critical for disease development, which is disrupted by fiber exclusion. These results suggest strategies to treat CD by targeting the intestinal niche and metabolism of disease-causing microbes.


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Nutrient deprivation of mucus colonizing bacteria by restricting fiber should be possible by simply altering diets towards low residue diets with higher bioavailability that are proximally as bioavailable as possible. I understand adherence to EN is not possible for everyone.
I find this fascinating because adding a lot more fiber reduced by symptoms by 90% at least. I guess this goes to that crohns may be a catch all for several diseases with different pathologies.