Modulations in the offspring gut microbiome are refractory to postnatal synbiotic supplementation among juvenile primates

Ryan M. Pace, Amanda L. Prince, Jun Ma, Benjamin D.W. Belfort, Alexia S. Harvey, Min Hu, Karalee Baquero, Peter Blundell, Diana Takahashi, Tyler Dean, Paul Kievit, Elinor L. Sullivan, Jacob E. Friedman, Kevin Grove, Kjersti M. Aagaard

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18 Scopus citations


Background: We and others have previously shown that alterations in the mammalian gut microbiome are associated with diet, notably early life exposure to a maternal high fat diet (HFD). Here, we aimed to further these studies by examining alterations in the gut microbiome of juvenile Japanese macaques (Macaca fuscata) that were exposed to a maternal HFD, weaned onto a control diet, and later supplemented with a synbiotic comprised of psyllium seed and Enterococcus and Lactobacillus species. Results: Eighteen month old offspring (n = 7) of 36% HFD fed dams were fed a control (14% fat) diet post weaning, then were synbiotic supplemented for 75 days and longitudinal stool and serum samples were obtained. All stool samples were subjected to 16S rRNA metagenomic sequencing, and microbiome profiles and serum lipids and triglycerides were compared to untreated, healthy age matched and diet matched controls (n = 7). Overall, 16S-based metagenomic analysis revealed that supplementation exerted minimal alterations to the gut microbiome including transient increased abundance of Lactobacillus species and decreased abundance of few bacterial genera, including Faecalibacterium and Anaerovibrio. However, serum lipid analysis revealed significant decreases in triglycerides, cholesterol, and LDL (p < 0.05). Nevertheless, supplemented juveniles challenged 4 months later were not protected from HFD-induced gut dysbiosis. Conclusions: Synbiotic supplementation is temporally associated with alterations in the gut microbiome and host lipid profiles of juvenile Japanese macaques that were previously exposed to a maternal HFD. Despite these presumptive temporal benefits, a protective effect against later HFD-challenge gut dysbiosis was not observed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number28
JournalBMC Microbiology
Issue number1
StatePublished - Apr 5 2018


  • Dysbiosis
  • Microbiome
  • Non-human primate
  • Probiotic, synbiotic

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Microbiology
  • Microbiology (medical)


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