The realization that the human organism is influenced by trillions of bacteria from the environment and that dietary modifications from a plant-based diet to a Western dietary pattern and obesity modify bacterial populations and impact the efficiency of absorption of nutrients from the diet, has changed our understanding of human nutrition and its impact on age-related chronic diseases including type 2 diabetes, heart disease, dementia and common forms of cancer. The human intestine is more densely populated with microorganisms than any other human organ and is a major site where the microflora may have pronounced impacts on human physiological function including immune function and inflammation. Microbial communities share their nutrients and their genes within an environment influenced by human genetics and metabolism. They are highly stable in a single individual but vary widely among individuals within populations affecting aspects of physiology such as the rise in glucose in response to specific foods with differing glycemic properties. Postbiotics include a variety of substances that locally nourish the intestinal epithelium, affect epithelial function, and circulate in the body to affect cellular and organ function. The bacterial metabolism of phytonutrients, B-vitamins, vitamin K and numerous amino acids results in the production of postbiotics. Examples of some well-studied postbiotics include equol from soy isoflavones, short-chain fatty acids from microbiome accessible carbohydrates, urolithins from ellagitannins, and indole-propionic acid from tryptophan. Individuals vary in their production of postbiotics and have been assigned to metabotypes associated in some cases with the risks of age-related chronic diseases.
This symposium will focus on the emerging nutrition science on the Microbiome with a focus on the roles of postbiotics in human health from a group of recognized experts in the field. More research is needed to better understand the links between the Microbiome and the Diet in terms of impacts on immune health, diabetes, vascular health, and brain health.
Breakfast will be available for sponsored satellite program attendees on a first-come, first-serve basis.