Heritable components of the human fecal microbiome are associated with visceral fat.

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PubMed ID: 27666579

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Beaumont M, Goodrich JK, Jackson MA, Yet I, Davenport ER, Vieira-Silva S, Debelius J, Pallister T, Mangino M, Raes J, Knight R, Clark AG, Ley RE, Spector TD, Bell JT

Genome Biol. Sep 2016

COMMENT:  The relationship between Microbiome and Obesity is now well stablished. However, the mechanisms or causal relationships are not well known. 

Twins have more similar microbiomes than unrelated individuals and even than marital partners. This could be due to genetic factors as specific maternal transmission among other possibilities. Thus, the concept of heritability of the human fecal microbiota has been proposed. 

The authors investigate the association between the human fecal microbiome and abdominal fat in twins as this is one of the most important risk factors for cardiovascular disease.

The authors conclude that:

Heritable components of the human fecal microbiome are significantly associated with visceral fat, confirming the key role of the microbiome in cardio-metabolic disease risk. 

And that there is a:

Link between fecal microbiome profiles, visceral fat and subcutaneous fat with genetic variants in obesity candidate genes, providing potential insights into mechanisms to relate the fecal microbiome to cardiometabolic disease risk


Eduardo Pareja