Our team’s reading recommendation for this month goes to “Microbiome: Effects of Ageing and Diet” by Salazar& al[i], an excellent review and study on our current knowledge of the gut microbiome and how it is influenced by ageing and diet.

The influence of the microbial community (microbiota) inhabiting our intestine on our global health has been studied for several decades. Starting from the classical microbiology techniques, evolving with the introduction of anaerobic culture and then, with DNA-based molecular techniques, the study of the microbiota has been completely revolutionized.

The emergence of fast, cost affordable next-generation sequencing (NGS) techniques allowed to expand the focus from the microbes to the ensemble of their genomes: the microbiome.

The microbiome can now be studied extensively and its evolution during aging can be documented and monitored. In particular, the way it takes part in the senescence process, its association with impaired gastrointestinal physiology, and essential immunological functions is currently the object of many studies. And the results, which show that it is possible to restore a balanced microbiome through diet and lifestyle, are exciting and extremely promising.

As this month paper concludes that “It is (…) urgent that nutritional strategies are developed that can positively modulate the composition and functionality of the intestinal microbiota to promote healthy aging that allows to dignify life in the elderly and to manage the health-care costs.” we, at 4bases, recognize that there is a fast-growing need for intestinal microbiome NGS analyses and we are committed to supporting the scientific and medical communities with our products and know-how.

[i] Salazar N, González S, Nogacka AM, Rios-Covián D, Arboleya S, Gueimonde M, Reyes-Gavilán CGL. Microbiome: Effects of Ageing and Diet. Curr Issues Mol Biol. 2020;36:33-62. doi: 10.21775/cimb.036.033. Epub 2019 Sep 27. PMID: 31558686.

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