Gut Microbiota vs Genetic Ancestry in Explaining Variance in Cardiometabolic Risk

Posted on 22 October 2019

New research suggests that a person’s gut microbiome composition explains more variance in cardiometabolic risk than genetic ancestry.

A cross-sectional study, with a cohort of 441 Colombian mestizos (mixed race), investigated the effects of genetic ancestry and gut microbiota composition on human cardiometabolic health.

In terms of the influence of genetic background, multivariable-adjusted generalised linear models suggest that individuals with higher Native American and African ancestries had higher fasting insulin levels, body mass index, and cardiometabolic syndrome (CMS) risk.

Although both genetic ancestry and gut microbiota composition contribute to shaping the risk of cardiometabolic disease, gut microbiome composition significantly explained more variance in CMS risk scale. It also informed about abnormal body fat distribution, elevated blood pressure, and coronary heart disease risk.

This study has verified that some microbes are more abundant in the guts of patients with certain diseases. For instance, Clostridiaceae SMB53 are more abundant type 2 diabetics and obese individuals. Equally, certain microbes, such as Akkermansia muciniphila, Oscillospira, Methanobrevibacter, and Christensenellaceae appears to be associated with healthy cardiometabolic states.

The findings of this study suggests that with a better understanding of how gut microbes influences cardiometabolic risk, we may be able to develop ways to reduce CMS risk through modulating individual gut microbiota composition.

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