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Contrasting effects of Bifidobacterium breve NCIMB 702258 and Bifidobacterium breve DPC 6330 on the composition of murine brain fatty acids and gut microbiota.

  • 2012-05
  • The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition 95(5)
    • R. Wall
    • T. Marques
    • Ó. O’Sullivan
    • R. Ross
    • F. Shanahan
    • E. Quigley
    • T. Dinan
    • B. Kiely
    • G. Fitzgerald
    • P. Cotter
    • F. Fouhy
    • F. Fouhy
    • C. Stanton


Background: We previously showed that microbial metabolism in the gut influences the composition of bioactive fatty acids in host adipose tissue.

Objective: This study compared the effect of dietary supplementation for 8 wk with human-derived Bifidobacterium breve strains on fat distribution and composition and the composition of the gut microbiota in mice.

Methods: C57BL/6 mice (n = 8 per group) received B. breve DPC 6330 or B. breve NCIMB 702258 (10(9) microorganisms) daily for 8 wk or no supplement (controls). Tissue fatty acid composition was assessed by gas-liquid chromatography while 16S rRNA pyrosequencing was used to investigate microbiota composition.

Results: Visceral fat mass and brain stearic acid, arachidonic acid, and DHA were higher in mice supplemented with B. breve NCIMB 702258 than in mice in the other 2 groups (P < 0.05). In addition, both B. breve DPC 6330 and B. breve NCIMB 702258 supplementation resulted in higher propionate concentrations in the cecum than did no supplementation (P < 0.05). Compositional sequencing of the gut microbiota showed a tendency for greater proportions of Clostridiaceae (25%, 12%, and 18%; P = 0.08) and lower proportions of Eubacteriaceae (3%, 12%, and 13%; P = 0.06) in mice supplemented with B. breve DPC 6330 than in mice supplemented with B. breve NCIMB 702258 and unsupplemented controls, respectively.

Conclusion: The response of fatty acid metabolism to administration of bifidobacteria is strain-dependent, and strain-strain differences are important factors that influence modulation of the gut microbial community by ingested microorganisms.

Research Insights

SupplementHealth OutcomeEffect TypeEffect Size
Bifidobacterium breveAltered Brain Fatty Acid CompositionNeutral
Bifidobacterium breveAltered Gut Microbiota CompositionNeutral
Bifidobacterium breveIncreased Fecal Propionic Acid LevelsBeneficial
Bifidobacterium breveIncreased Visceral Fat MassHarmful
Bifidobacterium breve Bbr8Increased Cecum Propionate ConcentrationBeneficial

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