Gut Microbiome Heritability | The Scientist Magazine®

research suggested host genetic variation can influence microbial
phenotype, but an analysis of data from a large twin study published in Cell today
(November 6) solidifies the connection between human genotype and the
composition of the gut microbiome. Studying more than 1,000 fecal
samples from 416 monozygotic and dizygotic twin pairs, Cornell
University’s Ruth Ley and her colleagues have homed in on one bacterial taxon, the family Christensenellaceae, as the most highly heritable group of microbes in the human gut. The researchers also found that Christensenellaceae—which was first described
just two years ago—is central to a network of co-occurring heritable
microbes that is associated with lean body mass index (BMI). They
determined that introducing at least one member this bacterial family
was associated with reduced weight gain in mice.

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