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CREATING HEALTHY GUT ECOSYSTEMS Investigating how to promote healthier gut ecosystems through environmental, genetic and other means.

Researcher Institution

Dr. Elaine Petrof Queen’s University

Project Dr. Petrof is investigating whether Lactobacillus Investment $119,445

plantarum, a common gut bacterium which is also a (Year 3 of 3) probiotic, has anti-inflammatory benefits that may block the development of colitis. Research into this area may lead to safer IBD treatments that would reduce the negative inflammatory response, while maintaining the body’s critical host defenses.

Co-Investigator(s): Dr. Nathan Magarvey

Dr. Deanna Gibson

Keywords: probiotics; host-microbe interactions; colitis; host defenses; Lactobacillus plantarum.

University of Minnesota University of Dr. Gibson is investigating the impact of dietary fat British Columbia intake on the intestinal microflora and is examining

how this change affects intestinal immunity and susceptibility to IBD. The goal of the research is to identify dietary fats that promote beneficial microbes and protect the body against IBD.

Keywords: intestinal immunity; nutrition; enteric bacteria; polyunsaturated fatty acid supplementation; dietary fat.

Dr. Michael Surette

McMaster University

Dr. Surette is using a highly novel treatment where $112,546

patients with active ulcerative colitis are given fecal (Year 2 of 3) enemas to try and replace their stool containing bacteria that may be driving their disease with that from a healthy donor. This study may provide more specific targeted therapies in the future.

Keywords: fecal biotherapy; microbiome; randomized control trial; ulcerative colitis.

Co-Investigator(s): McMaster Dr. Paul Moayyedi University Dr. Christine Lee St. Joseph’s Healthcare

Dr. John Marshall McMaster University

Dr. Elena Verdu McMaster University

Dr. Verdu is studying how a specific probiotic, Bifidobacterium breve, can prevent flares in colitis

mice. Her studies have shown that adding this probiotic to germ free mice can efficiently increase the production of an antibiotic-like molecule. The efficiency with which this probiotic stimulates the production of this “host antimicrobial” is higher than other normal bacteria living in our gut. Dr. Verdu’s work can help identify a new treatment option for IBD that increases the antimicrobial capabilities and protects against gut inflammation in humans.

Co-Investigator(s): Dr. Emma


University of Guelph

Keywords: probiotics; experimental colitis models;

commensal bacteria; dysbiosis and IBD; gut homeostasis.

$107,500 (Year 1 of 3) $119,445 (Year 2 of 3)

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