Microbiome and Germ-Free INSIGHTS


Webinar Q&A — Cyclical Bias

In a recent webinar, Dr. Alex Rodriguez-Palacios of Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine discussed a confounding influence on many common microbiome study endpoints uncovered in studies using the NesTiso system. The NesTiso system has been described in a previous publication1 and examined in an on-demand webinar. Due to time constraints, some of the questions you submitted to our Q&A session went unanswered. We present here...

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Humanizing the gut microbiota of mice: Opportunities and challenges

On August 8, 2018, Randi Lundberg, DVM, PhD published a review paper titled, Humanizing the gut microbiota of mice: Opportunities and challenges in the journal, Laboratory Animals. The author acknowledges the need for in vivo models to study the human microbiome's interaction with a biologically relevant host. Mice are one of the most popular animal models used in biomedical research and have been adopted as one of...

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Webinar Q&A — Nested Isolation

In a recent webinar, Dr. Alex Rodriguez-Palacios of Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine discussed the use of a new, low-cost caging system for conducting microbiome research in rodents. The speaker shared their experience with the NesTiso system and discussed: How NesTiso makes gnotobiotic research simple and practical How to inexpensively verify the germ-free status of your models How the portability of NesTiso systems accelerate gnotobiotic...

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Book Review: Animal Models for Microbiome Research

This book is the outcome of Workshop on Animal Models for Microbiome Research: Advancing Basic Science and Translational Research, hosted by the Institute for Laboratory Animal Research (ILAR). Microbiome and germ-free researchers James Fox, Joseph Newsome, Wendy Garrett, Jeffrey Gordon and Vincent Young organized the workshop, with the following goals: Improve the depth and breadth of analysis of microbial communities using various model organisms Address the challenges...

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4 Gut-Brain Axis Publications You May Have Missed

You may have missed these publications in the recent rush of microbiome and germ-free research news, but researchers are making interesting connections between the gut microbiome and neurological functioning. Four studies examined relationships between the gut microbiome and mood, behavior, disease risk, and development. Prenatal Stress, the Microbiome, and Development Prenatal stress disrupts social behavior, cortical neurobiology and commensal microbes in adult male offspring. Scientists at Ohio...

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New Research on Maintaining Complex Gut Microbiota in Mouse Models

Figure 1: Experimental design used to generate CD1 mice with four different gut microbiota (GM) profiles. Schematic diagram showing embryo transfer scheme used to rederive CD1 mice to C57BL/6J GMJAX, C67BL/6NTacGMTAC, Crl:CD1GMCRL, and HSD:ICRGMHSD surrogate dams. At maturity, offspring were mated using an outbred mating scheme within each GM profile and maintained as four separate breeding colonies for nine generations. An increased interest in studies involving the...

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Introduction to Translational Microbiome Research Infographic

Download Taconic Biosciences' new infographic, Translational Microbiome at a Glance, for valuable insights into the translational aspects of microbiome research. Intended for those just beginning their work, Translational Microbiome at a Glance covers critical introductory subjects such as: The six factors that shape the mouse microbiome — and study endpoints Disease associations that can impact experimental performance Investment and intellectual property status Applications of germ-free mice in...

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Limitations of Feces as Proxy for Gut Microbiota

A myriad of factors can influence the gut microbiota composition of laboratory rats and mice: diet, stress, circadian rhythm, vendor source, how they are housed, and more. Since different gut microbiota compositions can elicit different phenotypes under otherwise similar experimental conditions, understanding what shapes the rodent microbiome is becoming increasingly important for researchers. Husbandry-Induced Microbiome Effects The husbandry of laboratory animals is highly variable between facilities. Different...

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Feed Your Gut Microbiota for Improved Health

Humanized microbiota Swiss Webster mice infected with C. difficile efficiently clear the pathogen when maintained on a diet with microbiota-accessible carbohydrates (MAC+), but remain persistently infected when on a MAC-deficient diet (MD1, MD2). Switching from a MAC-deficient diet promotes rapid pathogen clearance. Figure from Hryckowian et al.1 Clostridium difficile is a significant source of infectious disease death in the United States, and C. difficile infection can be...

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Diets High in Salt May Increase Sensitivity to Autoimmune Disease through Microbiome Alteration

High salt diets have previously been shown to increase severity of certain types of induced autoimmune disease in mouse models via a signaling pathway, but the impact of these diets on the gut microbiome and intestinal inflammation have not been studied. Researchers at McMaster University recently investigated this question in a paper titled "High salt diet exacerbates colitis in mice by decreasing Lactobacillus levels and butyrate production"...

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