Assessment of Fecal Microbiota and Fecal Metabolome in Symptomatic Uncomplicated Diverticular Disease of the Colon

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Goal:The aim of this study was to assess fecal microbiota and metabolome in a population with symptomatic uncomplicated diverticular disease (SUDD).Background:Whether intestinal microbiota and metabolic profiling may be altered in patients with SUDD is unknown.Patients and Methods:Stool samples from 44 consecutive women [15 patients with SUDD, 13 with asymptomatic diverticulosis (AD), and 16 healthy controls (HCs)] were analyzed. Real-time polymerase chain reaction was used to quantify targeted microorganisms. High-resolution proton nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy associated with multivariate analysis with partial least-square discriminant analysis (PLS-DA) was applied on the metabolite data set.Results:The overall bacterial quantity did not differ among the 3 groups (P=0.449), with no difference in Bacteroides/Prevotella, Clostridium coccoides, Bifidobacterium, Lactobacillus, and Escherichia coli subgroups. The amount of Akkermansia muciniphila species was significantly different between HC, AD, and SUDD subjects (P=0.017). PLS-DA analysis of nuclear magnetic resonance -based metabolomics associated with microbiological data showed significant discrimination between HCs and AD patients (R2=0.733; Q2=0.383; P<0.05, LV=2). PLS analysis showed lower N-acetyl compound and isovalerate levels in AD, associated with higher levels of A. municiphila, as compared with the HC group. PLS-DA applied on AD and SUDD samples showed a good discrimination between these 2 groups (R2=0.69; Q2=0.35; LV=2). SUDD patients were characterized by low levels of valerate, butyrate, and choline and by high levels of N-acetyl derivatives and U1.Conclusions:SUDD and AD do not show colonic bacterial overgrowth, but a significant difference in the levels of fecal A. muciniphila was observed. Moreover, increasing expression of some metabolites as expression of different AD and SUDD metabolic activity was found.

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