How Gut Microbial Ecology Affects Health
BY: IFT Staff
Tuesday, July 14; 1:15–2:45 p.m.
The field of probiotics and prebiotics has advanced significantly in recent years, driven by worldwide progress in understanding the role of the human microbiota in health and disease and the demand to outline efficient strategies to form a healthier microbiota. There are well-controlled intervention trials, systematic reviews and meta analyses that offer substantial evidence of the benefits of probiotics, including probiotics with important public health implications, especially for people living in developed and developing countries.
It is well documented that the intestinal microbiota plays an important role in gastrointestinal development and function while regulating host inflammatory responses and immune homeostasis. Evidence shows the intestinal microbiota functions as a metabolically active organ, with the capability of interacting with several host systems other than the gastrointestinal tract (the brain, respiratory tract, and urogenital tract). Research suggests that the gut microbiota is capable of affecting fat storage and metabolism, which is substantial information in the fight against the obesity epidemic.
However, much remains to be explored on how to translate all this information to probiotic and prebiotic interventions that may modify the microbiome and promote human health. In this symposium, a group of leading experts will share recent advances in research on probiotics and prebiotics in promoting human health. The symposium will facilitate continued advances in probiotic and prebiotic research and will ensure probiotic benefits are properly communicated to food industry and consumers.
Presented by: James Steele, Univ. of Wisconsin-Madison; Robert Hutkins, Univ. of Nebraska-Lincoln; David Sela, Univ. of Massachusetts