Akkermansia muciniphila is a spell? No, behind the cryptic name of a bacterium is in the intestine for the formation of the mucous membrane responsible hides. Scientists suspect already for a Long time, that it has a positive effect on the intestinal immune system. Now, Belgian researchers have found out that A. muciniphila is likely to also affect our weight.
The intestinal flora, also the Microbiome refers to the totality of all the bacteria that live in the gut. The human specific metabolic disorders, bowel diseases or Obesity, the Microbiome. In the case of obesity – and Diabetes-patients with the amount of A. muciniphila bacteria in the intestine is reduced, according to experts, in the process. The intestine shrinks mucosa, the intestinal wall is less and the risk of inflammation increases.
Bacterium against obesity and Diabetes
The Belgian team of researchers from the Catholic University in Leuven now has examined how the bacterium affects, among other things, on the metabolism of fat and the weight. Their results are published in the journal “Nature Medicine”. It is the first study of so-called “new” probiotics. “Old” probiotics are available to buy for quite some time, for example, as a dietary Supplement. “Thus, the study in this area is a milestone study,” says Till Strowig, researchers at the Helmholtz centre for infection research, was not involved in the investigation.
In the pilot study 40 obese to obese patients with a so-called insulin resistance. The Insulin no longer has the desired effect, causing the cells to not enough sugar from the blood can absorb. In addition, the test persons have high blood pressure, fat metabolism disorders and obesity suffered.
For the study, the subjects were divided into three groups: The first group-administered, the researchers killed A. muciniphila, the second living A. municiphila and the last control group received a Placebo. Neither participants nor researchers knew who received which preparation. During the investigation, the participants should continue their previous eating and exercise habits. The treatment lasted for three months.
Milestone in the field of Microbiome research
Indeed, the participants improved with the bacterium, the metabolism and the body weight without any additional diet. Thus, the current pilot study confirmed previous experiments in mice, in which A. muciniphila prevented the development of obesity and type 2 Diabetes.
First and foremost, those patients, where dead bacteria were administered benefited. According to the study, some test subjects lost weight slightly more than two pounds of your body, the fat mass was decreased compared to baseline by slightly more than a Kilo. In addition, improvement in liver values. Side effects were not able to observe the researchers.
Due to the low number of participants, large-scale clinical studies must follow. In order to check whether the treatment is actually as promising as it appears. Moreover, it is questionable whether the results of the pilot could study outside Europe.
A. muciniphila in the supermarket
“The influences on the Microbiome are many and varied,” said Strowig. Not only genetics and nutrition are involved in the diversity in the intestine. Investigations, among others, by US-American researchers show that the Microbiome differs between cultures. In the journal “Cell Host & Microbe” reports, researchers at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology “Eastern” and “Western” mikrobi omen.
Treatment with A. muciniphila would be developed, would have to be clarified whether this also helps overweight Americans or Asians. The study in other countries and with subjects with varying degrees of intestinal microbiome needs to be repeated, says expert Strowig. In Germany, it could go quite a bit faster.
Even if further clinical Tests need to be carried out before the bacterium as a drug comes on the market: According to the Strowig, it is likely that the bacteria prior to their introduction as a medication as a food Supplement in the super market shelves.