BRUSSELS, April 20, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- Every person's intestinal system falls into one of three clearly distinguishabletypes of gut microbiota, comparable to blood types. These types are not related to race, native country or diet, according to a new metagenomics study by an international consortium of scientists including Jeroen Raes,
"The three gut types can explain why the uptake of medicines and nutrients varies from person to person," says bioinformatician Jeroen Raes of the VIB and Vrije Universiteit Brussel, one of the two lead researchers in the study. "This knowledge could form the basis of personalized therapies. Treatments and doses could be determined on the basis of the gut type of the patient."
Improved knowledge of the gut types could also lead to other medical applications, such as the early diagnosis of intestinal cancer, Crohn's disease and the adverse effects of obesity.
Three types of gut microbiota
The types of gut microbiota (called enterotypes) can be classified into three large, clearly distinguishable groups: Bacteroides, Prevotella and Ruminococcus. They are named for the bacteria that dominate the intestines of the respective groups. It is still unclear whether people can change from one group to another during their lives.
This research was conducted by Jeroen Raes of the VIB Department of Molecular and Cellular Interactions, Vrije Universiteit Brussel VIB and Manimozhiyan Arumugam of the European Molecular Biology Laboratory, under the direction of Dusko Ehrlich and Peer Bork of the MetaHIT consortium.
Read more on http://www.vib.be/Jeroen-Raes Notes to the editor Source:
VIB is a non-profit research institute in the life sciences in Flanders, Belgium, with 1200 scientists conducting strategic basic research on the molecular mechanisms that are responsible for the functioning of the human body, plants, and micro-organisms. The Vrije Universiteit Brussel (VUB) is a university in the heart of Belgium and Europe http://www.vub.ac.be/
SOURCE VIB and Vrije Universiteit Brussel
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