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GUT MICROBIOTA IN 2019

Big data and tiny proteins: shining a light on the dark corners of the gut microbiome

In 2019, there have been substantial advances in our understanding of the gut microbiome. Key developments include an improved gut-on-a-chip system, a search for small proteins produced by the commensal gut microbiome and the publication of one of the most comprehensive multi-omic datasets for interrogating host–microorganism interactions in inflammatory bowel disease.

Key advances

  • Researchers successfully developed an improved gut-on-a-chip system that enabled sustained co-culture of gut epithelium with a complex anerobic microbial community that was recoverable and stable after 5 days3.

  • A metagenome-mining effort to discover small proteins produced by the commensal gut microbiome identified 4,539 protein families that have never before been described in the commensal gut microbiome4.

  • One of the most comprehensive multi-omic datasets for interrogating host–microorganism interactions in IBD identified a characteristic dysbiotic composition in patients with IBD that deviated from that of non-IBD controls, as well as large inter-individual differences7.

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References

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Correspondence to Suzanne Devkota.

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Devkota, S. Big data and tiny proteins: shining a light on the dark corners of the gut microbiome. Nat Rev Gastroenterol Hepatol 17, 68–69 (2020). https://doi.org/10.1038/s41575-019-0243-6

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  • DOI: https://doi.org/10.1038/s41575-019-0243-6

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